Homemade deodorant, that lasts all day

I don’t know about you, but I live in the SOUTH, where it is hot and humid for most of the year. A good deodorant can become your best friend. And a natural antiperspirant? Even better. I’m not saying that this will keep you from sweating, but the arrowroot powder does help. The baking soda neutralizes any odor and lasts all day long. Best of all, it’s much more solid at room temp than other homemade deodorants. You don’t need to keep it in the fridge all the time. After many trials and errors, this is the best recipe I’ve come up with for a GOOD, SOLID deodorant that lasts all day.

  • Empty deodorant container (buy here)
  • 3 TBSP coconut oil (buy here)
  • 2 TBSP beeswax (buy here)
  • 2 TBSP baking soda (buy here)
  • 2 TBSP arrowroot (buy here)
  • 1/8 tsp tea tree essential oil (buy here)
  • 1/8 tsp lavender (buy here) or rosemary essential oil (buy here)
  • Melt beeswax and coconut oil in a pan or double boiler over low heat. Whisk in the baking soda and arrowroot powder. Remove pan from heat, and stir in essential oils. Add more if it isn’t fragrant enough for you. Pour into deodorant container. Leave uncapped for 24 hours or until cool. Then cap.

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    Comments

    1. Jen says

      You said you use 2 TBSP beeswax. The beeswax I have came in 1oz cubes. Is the 2tbsp supposed to be melted? Looking for a suggestion of how to measure that easily!
      Thanks!

    2. stephanie c.j. francis says

      did anyone have trouble with the holes in the device that pushes the deodorant up? I used an old ban solid deodorant container and my mix went straight to the bottom. Any suggestions on how to fix this?

      • christina says

        Yes! I used foil to cover the little plastic piece (make a small hole in the center so it can move up and down). Also, I waited until my mixture cooled and thickened a bit before filling the container.

    3. christina says

      I made this deodorant yesterday, so far I love it and am really pleased with your recipe! I made it with tea tree oil, lemon, and sweet orange. It smells awesome. Just wondering if this stains clothing due to the coconut oil? Thanks

      • says

        It does not stain clothing, but some people with fair skin have discovered that unbleached (yellow) beeswax can cause discoloration of the skin over prolonged use. This does not happen with everyone, but if it does happen, simply stop using or when you make it OMIT the beeswax. The beeswax keeps it solid, so if you remove it, it will be more of a cream deodorant.

    4. Andrea says

      Just wanted to tell you I’ve been using this since last November and it’s my favorite recipe so far (I’ve tried a few). It works, and stays much more solid than other recipes, which I appreciate! Thanks for sharing.

    5. says

      Hi Courtney,

      Thank you so much for the recipe! I was wondering if there’s a substitute for Baking Soda? My skin is sensitive under the arms and they don’t like baking soda.

      Thanks!

    6. Rebecca says

      Hey Sarah, thanks for the recipe! I made my version of this deodorant earlier, I didn’t have beeswax or tea tree oil so made it without! Plus I didn’t really know where to get beeswax here in Ireland. My Nivea deodorant ran out so had to make this with what I had!! It’s been tried and tested today, spent over an hour scrubbing my kitchen floor on my hands and knees and I’m still smelling fresh, so fresh that I’m a little in shock :-) So thanks again!

      Rebecca.

    7. Sarah says

      This is fantastic! I thought it was easier to measure the beeswax and the coconut oil in ounces, so I converted it over. The beeswax works out to be 1 oz, and the coconut oil 1.43 oz. I did a little bit of math to find out how much it costs, so this is my total amount (minus the essential oils):

      1 oz (28.3495 g) beeswax ($20 /kg) = $0.57
      1.43 oz (40.5398 g) of coconut oil ($13.02 /kg) = $0.53
      18 g tapioca starch ($3.30 /kg) = $0.06
      32 g baking soda ($2.40 /kg) = $0.08

      Total = $1.24

      That’s cheaper than “normal” deodorant. If you’re American (I’m Canadian), then it’s likely that your materials are even cheaper than mine (we have a high cost of living here)!

      • Sarah says

        I forgot to mention that I also used old deodorant containers; so I didn’t factor in the cost for new ones. :)

        • Sarah says

          Oh, and I’m sorry… I subbed the arrowroot for tapioca. Starch is starch. I figured it would work the same (and it does)! Arrowroot is RIDICULOUSLY expensive around here!

    8. says

      I just made this for the third time. I love this recipe and just wanted to tell you. I am a doula and I need to smell nice and not sweaty when helping women during birth, especially the long ones and I have never felt self conscious or that this deodorant was fading. Thanks for the great recipe!

    9. says

      I love the deodorant and am amazed at how well it works at keeping the odor away. I gave some to my son and husband to use and they requested a more “manly” scent than the lavender oil. I haven’t tried the tea tree and lavender combination yet, but wondered if you had success with any other essential oil scent blends? Love your website! Thanks.

      • says

        You can pretty much substitute the oils for whichever you want, but make sure that they are therapeutic grade and safe for pregnant women (if you’re pregnant).

    10. Lori says

      I keep a small bowl of plain, dry carb soda in my bathroom to use as deodorant, and applied with a scrunched nylon bath ball. No recipe to make up, no extra ingredients, and it does the job just fine.

    11. mary says

      I run out of my regular eco-deodorant and so I grabbed an empty spray bottle, filled it with about 50 mls water, 10 drops of organic lavender essential oil, 1/2 teaspoon of bicarb of soda and gave it a good shake. I have used that for three weeks, and it really works :)

    12. Lora says

      I made this yesterday and immediately after it cooled to a solid I used it. I’m in LOVE!!!! Not only was this easy to make with stuff I had on-hand, it was so quick! Took me around ten mins to gather ingredients, melt, mix and pour – and yes it’s that simple! As far as clean up, I melted my beeswax in a mason jar I use specifically for that purpose. So clean up is simply wiping out, washing and putting away. I don’t worry about it having residue because that’s all I use it for.
      As for how it turned out – well I followed the recipe exactly and it turned out just like the recipe said it would. yay! I’ve been working around the house, cleaning, doing laundry, vacuuming and sweeping. I’m sweaty but not stinky!!! :-)
      When I run out I’m def making this again.
      Thanks for the awesome recipe!

    13. RaabUSMC says

      Can I sub in some Palm Kernel Oil (102 degree melting point) in this DIY Deodorant to assist with the melting in room temperature concern? Also would a conditioning/silky emulsifying wax be subbed? Oh and one more addition, Pink Himalayan Salt, for increased absorption and anti-bacterial properties? If so, should it be completely dissolved in the liquids or finely ground in a spice grinder and mixed in shortly before the pour? Thanks

      • says

        I have no idea. I’ve never actually bought palm kernal oil. I’m also not sure what wax you’re referring to. I personally only use beeswax. The added salt shouldn’t be a problem. Let me know how your experiment turns out!

        • Mary Beth says

          I read a lot of the comments about the beeswax in the link and a lot of people said it smelled awful as well as it may not truly be organic. Is there another beeswax that you would recommend that is actually organic and also comes in smaller sizes? Maybe like 5 oz instead of 16 oz?

      • Marisol says

        I followed the recipe but substituted arrowroot with tapioca. I realized recently that my shirts are getting stained and my underarm is getting darker. I really like this deodorant but don’t want to ruin my shirts. Any thoughts?

        • Andrea says

          This is my favorite deodorant recipe so I shared a container with my friend. She said her underarms turned a dark reddish/brown underneath and it’s very noticeable and she’s upset about it. We can’t figure out why! I found this comment and hoped it was the answer. You think it is the beeswax? Any reason why? I have used 7 containers of this deodorant and love it but she just started and has that. She’s also worried it won’t go away and nervous. Any thoughts? Advice? Thank you!!!

          • says

            Some people react more to the beeswax. You can omit the beeswax from the recipe and just put it in a jar and dip your finger in to apply. The beeswax makes it solid. That’s its only purpose. Tell your friend it will go away eventually. Sorry!

    14. says

      Thanks for posting a recipe to a solid homemade deodorant. This is my 3rd recipe. The 1st was all coconut oil with arrowroot and baking soda, but no beeswax. It was too soft. 2nd one I tried was with less coconut oil and I added shea,cocoa butter, beeswax along with just arrowroot. That one ended up being too hard to twist. I didn’t quite follow your recipe exactly because I doubled it for 2 sticks and substituted 2 out of 6 T of cocoa butter. I’m also in the South and tend to keep my house around 78 degrees. I currently have all of the sticks in the fridge because I’m too afraid they will melt. We’ll see what happens with this particular recipe. I know you said follow exactly, but I just replaced a tiny part with cocoa butter.

    15. Natasha says

      We are making our second batch today of your recipe, which means it is a winner! We love this, and by we I mean my teenage son…he really says it works well. No stink! I love that he is open to making it with me and we add tea tree, cedar and sandalwood to make his manly ;) He uses 1 1/2 of the recipe to make 1 full and 1 travel size for gym at school.
      To mine I add tea tree, lavender, sweet lime and ylang ylang for a soft fresh girly smell.
      Thanks for a great and simple recipe that works so good.

    16. elaine says

      i don’t use the beeswax, i have very fair/freeckled skin so that would really clog me up – one of the reasons i don’t use commercial deoderant anymore. i don’t mind the regular homemade versions i put on with my fingers and they last more than a day.
      i am curious, why you wanted a solid?

    17. says

      I just made my homemade deodorant this afternoon! Mine is very similar to yours, but I do not use baking soda as it seems to be an irritant to many. Mine also calls for shea butter, plus a couple drops of castor oil for a smoother application. I always add 1 vitamin E capsule right at the end…just snip and squeeze it into the ingredients. Seems to help keep it fresh, I believe. I do use a combination of tea tree and lavender oils…
      I tested my recipe on some others and this seems to be the one everyone likes. The beeswax really does help keep it solid, especially in the summer.

    18. Bev says

      Thanks – we are both up way too late I see :)
      I just got 5 gallons of each coconut oil – so I might have a bit to try this out with. I have tried many recipes but they are always melty and my husband does not like them. I will try this one and see what he thinks. We just don’t have any more of those deodorant things anymore…

    19. Bev says

      Do you use expeller pressed coconut oil (that does not smell like coconut) or regular coconut oil (very coconutty)? I looked at the sight you recommended but it has both listed there on the same page…

    20. Michelle says

      I’m about to make a batch using coconut oil and shea butter, would it work just as well as beeswax, or do I really need the beeswax? I live in Texas. And what do you put them in again? I’m having a hard time figuring that one out except for maybe a toilet paper roll lined with parchment paper.

      • says

        I recommend following the recipe if you want the result. If you use substitutes, it will turn out differently. The beeswax keeps it solid in higher temperatures. I used an empty deodorant container.

    21. KK says

      Hi! I use almost the same recipe minus the beeswax! I have to keep mine in the fridge otherwise it gets soft and leaks…Ugh! Does the beeswax really help? We love the version we’ve been using!

    22. says

      Had to share this testimonial from one of my FB fans. Made me smile!

      Posted by Amiste Sanders: “I just made it this week! My first ever homemade deodorant and your recipe turned out perfect, so easy to follow (i made no subs or changes). My husband and i are both using it and so far it is working just as well for us as the bad stuff we used to use. Thanks so much for sharing this! I’m no longer intimidated by this diy product that i had been avoiding trying to make and use :)”

    23. says

      Another way to get away from BPA- line a cupcake pan or similar small receptacle with parchment paper and pour your deodorant in there! Wrap and apply your cute sticker after it dries then just peel it like an icecream sandwich as you use it!

      • Laurie says

        I just copied and pasted this from the blog article of the link you have posted. Lavender Essential Oils does NOT cause an estrogen imbalance. Read below.

        Have You Heard . . .

        That lavender and tea tree oil can cause little boys to grow breasts? Though I’ve definitely pulled out the lavender for my kids on many occasions and I use tea tree oil in my wipe solution, there have been times when I’ve held back over concerns about possible estrogenic effects, both for them and myself.

        Turns out, there was nothing to worry about.

        Thanks to a tip from Paula on a Facebook post last week, I dug up the often cited 2007 study which first claimed lavender and tea tree oil are hormone disruptors. Not only was it poorly constructed and vague, it has a sample pool of only three people!!

        The boys (ages four, seven and ten), apparently used **some kind of product** which contained these oils. The products weren’t analyzed for the presence of other potential hormone disruptors, and the oils weren’t checked for purity. After developing their hypothesis, the researchers decided to test lavender and tea tree oil with human cells in a petri dish. Though the results did show estrogenic activity, that’s probably because the solvent they used to dilute the oils – dimethyl sulfoxide – is a known estrogen mimicker! Furthermore:

        If you take a close look at the study, some issues are raised . . . The full list of ingredients in these products were not mentioned, nor the possible chemicals included in the packaging of the products. Parabens were likely included in the ingredients and phthalates in the packaging. In a recent study, diethyl phthalate was found in 103 out of 252 products, which included fragrances, hair care products, deodorants, nail polishes, lotions, skin cleansers and baby products.3 Both phthalates and parabens have been shown to have an estrogenicity presence.4&5

        Clearly, the results of this study are desperately lacking in meaningful analysis. So what do we know, really?

        What Studies REALLY Say About Lavender & Tea Tree

        According to three doctors representing Wake Forest, Yale and Harvard respectively, “Traditional use and clinical trials have not suggested estrogenic effects of tea tree or lavender oil, though estrogenic effects have been reported for other essential oils and plants.” (source)

        Even more helpful is this study, which measured ”the effect of a test substance on the uterus of immature or estrogen-deprived female rats over three days. Any estrogenic action causes a rapid and measurable increase in uterine weight. The assay has been in use since the 1930s, was adopted by the OECD in 2007, and is now regarded as the ‘benchmark animal assay for estrogenic effects.’” (source)

        The results? Even in concentrations 6,000 and 30,000 times greater than estimated exposure from multiple cosmetic products containing lavender oil, there was absolutely no effect on the uterus of the rats.

        Zip. Nada. Nothing.

        As far as I can tell, the 2007 study is the only one which implicates lavender and tea tree as estrogenic. Given how poorly constructed it was and the fact that the only “gold standard” study we have says lavender is not estrogenic, I am not inclined to trust the results on tea tree oil either. Thank you Paula for putting my mind at ease!

    24. says

      d@mn!t. i didn’t know about the estrogenic effect of tea tree oil before! I just made up my first batch using tea tree oil. i knew lavendar was very estrogenic so i swapped it for patchouli. i guess next batch i will skip the tea tree oil.

      • Laurie says

        I just copied and pasted this from the blog article of the link that was previously posted. Lavender Essential Oils does NOT cause an estrogen imbalance. Read below.

        Have You Heard . . .

        That lavender and tea tree oil can cause little boys to grow breasts? Though I’ve definitely pulled out the lavender for my kids on many occasions and I use tea tree oil in my wipe solution, there have been times when I’ve held back over concerns about possible estrogenic effects, both for them and myself.

        Turns out, there was nothing to worry about.

        Thanks to a tip from Paula on a Facebook post last week, I dug up the often cited 2007 study which first claimed lavender and tea tree oil are hormone disruptors. Not only was it poorly constructed and vague, it has a sample pool of only three people!!

        The boys (ages four, seven and ten), apparently used **some kind of product** which contained these oils. The products weren’t analyzed for the presence of other potential hormone disruptors, and the oils weren’t checked for purity. After developing their hypothesis, the researchers decided to test lavender and tea tree oil with human cells in a petri dish. Though the results did show estrogenic activity, that’s probably because the solvent they used to dilute the oils – dimethyl sulfoxide – is a known estrogen mimicker! Furthermore:

        If you take a close look at the study, some issues are raised . . . The full list of ingredients in these products were not mentioned, nor the possible chemicals included in the packaging of the products. Parabens were likely included in the ingredients and phthalates in the packaging. In a recent study, diethyl phthalate was found in 103 out of 252 products, which included fragrances, hair care products, deodorants, nail polishes, lotions, skin cleansers and baby products.3 Both phthalates and parabens have been shown to have an estrogenicity presence.4&5

        Clearly, the results of this study are desperately lacking in meaningful analysis. So what do we know, really?

        What Studies REALLY Say About Lavender & Tea Tree

        According to three doctors representing Wake Forest, Yale and Harvard respectively, “Traditional use and clinical trials have not suggested estrogenic effects of tea tree or lavender oil, though estrogenic effects have been reported for other essential oils and plants.” (source)

        Even more helpful is this study, which measured ”the effect of a test substance on the uterus of immature or estrogen-deprived female rats over three days. Any estrogenic action causes a rapid and measurable increase in uterine weight. The assay has been in use since the 1930s, was adopted by the OECD in 2007, and is now regarded as the ‘benchmark animal assay for estrogenic effects.’” (source)

        The results? Even in concentrations 6,000 and 30,000 times greater than estimated exposure from multiple cosmetic products containing lavender oil, there was absolutely no effect on the uterus of the rats.

        Zip. Nada. Nothing.

        As far as I can tell, the 2007 study is the only one which implicates lavender and tea tree as estrogenic. Given how poorly constructed it was and the fact that the only “gold standard” study we have says lavender is not estrogenic, I am not inclined to trust the results on tea tree oil either. Thank you Paula for putting my mind at ease!

    25. Leah Herbas says

      I have been making a deodorant myself which for the most part I have been very pleased with. It calls for 1.5 tbsp beeswax, 4 tbsp shea butter, 1 tbsp cocoa butter, 4 tsp bentonite clay or kaolin clay and essential oil. It’s a pretty solid recipe compared to store bought but I do notice towards the end of the day I get a little stinky. It;s not an overpowering smell of B.O., I can’t quite describe it. I’m wondering how this recipe holds up? I don’t feel I sweat a lot which is good but that funny smell as the day goes on isn’t pleasant if I’m in public or at the gym after a sweaty workout LOL. Thanks for your help :)

    26. Maria says

      Thank you for sharing. Just tried making this weekend and boy did I ruin some dishes trying to make this. Took me an hour just to clean up after this :( What do you make yours in?

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