While we practice social distancing, we could probably all admit to showering less often over the past couple of months than when we were in close proximity to others.
But we don’t have to let smell announce that we are keeping safer at home. Using resources found at home, try making DIY deodorant. In fact, if you have the time and ingredients on hand, try making a few different recipes, to see which works best for your needs.
An easy recipe to start with requires ingredients probably already in your kitchen.
EASY HOMEMADE DEODORANT
-6 tablespoons coconut oil
-4 tablespoons baking soda
-4 tablespoons cornstarch or arrowroot powder
-Essential oils (optional)
Heat coconut oil until just melted. Mix in baking soda and cornstarch or arrowroot powder. Use as is for fragrance free odor protection, or add a few drops of essential oil to add scent. Citrus (lime, grapefruit and lemon) add light and fresh aromas. Use floral essential oils for spring time scents, or clove and cinnamon for warming fragrances.
Apply the deodorant once it has re-solidified by rubbing a pea sized amount onto your armpits, or use a Q-Tip or other applicator.
Baking soda fights odor, coconut oil has antimicrobial properties as well as holding the mix together and balancing the harshness of baking soda and cornstarch or arrowroot power absorb moisture.
If you want a more traditional deodorant experience, add beeswax to the recipe, and pour into an empty deodorant dispenser. Vitamin E oil and shea butter are also good additions to deodorant.
DIY STICK DEODORANT
-1 heaping tablespoons beeswax
-1 1/2 tablespoon coconut oil
-1 tablespoon shea butter
-2 tablespoons arrowroot powder
-2 tablespoons baking soda
-Essential oils (optional)
In a double boiler, melt and mix beeswax, coconut oil and shea butter, mix in dry ingredients and essential oils if using, and pour into dispenser to cool.
These recipes can be adjusted for your needs — decrease baking soda for sensitive skin, increase solids to modify texture. Add other oils (olive oil, or castor can make deodorant silkier and more nourishing), and try different scent blends.
If you want a baking soda-free deodorant, consider a spray. Spray deodorants can be made with alcohol and a couple teaspoons of vinegar, or from just magnesium oil.
In addition to being an easy personal care item to make, making your own can be healthier for your body and for the environment. Commercial deodorants often contain parabens, triclosan, phthalate and aluminum, which are absorbed by the skin and transferred directly into the blood stream or stored in fat cells.
These ingredients have been linked through research to a variety of health issues. Antiperspirants (as opposed to deodorants) may also clog pores, potentially leading to other issues.
Even if commercial deodorants and antiperspirants agree with your physiology, try making your own — it can’t hurt to cut out a few extra ingredients. Making deodorant at home saves on single-use plastic dispensers, which end up in landfill.
Best of all, it is totally customizable and crosses one item off your shopping pick-up list.
Br Aldona Bird