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under arm Deodorant alternative

 
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Location: USDA Zone 7a
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If you want to natually reduce the odor from underarms just swipe an alcohol moistened cotton swab over your armpits once or twice a day, but not immediately after shaving (for ladies who shave underarms).  It reduces the numbers of bacteria in that moist warm environment.  Bacteria is what causes odors, not the sweat itself.  Not good to use anti-perspirant as the body needs to naturally purify and detox itself via sweating.  Also many deodorants contain chemicals that are unnecessary, or worse like aluminum which can be absorbed into the body.  
 
pollinator
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Location: Beavercreek, OR
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I got upset at all the plastic regardless of the content.  Many alternatives (Schmidt's paste for one) just gave me rashes.  I settled on a simple mixture of rubbing alcohol, some water and drops of essential oil.  Placed in a little pump spray bottle this works very well.  The bottle is totally reuseable, the mixture is cheap and every few months when I mix up another bottle I can alter the oils I use.

I think the bottle is 4 ozs, and I either use full alcohol or 80/20.  Then I add about twenty drops TOTAL of essential oil.  The alcohol does a good job of terminating unwanted bacteria and the essential oils have totally random (to me...) but probably beneficial effects.
 
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Location: Santa Cruz, CA
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I know I'm 8 years late to this thread, but I saw this in a recent dailyish and thought I'd add my recipe for home made deodorant sticks.

I've been tweaking and refining it for ~ 10 years, making lots for clients, friends and family, different temperature climes etc. Hopefully this helps someone make their own extendable sticks!

Ingredients
4 oz beeswax
16 TBSP Baking Soda
12 TBSP Coconut Oil
2 TBSP Bentonite Clay
~ 1-2 TSP H2O2
Essential Oils to preference (we also use Tahitian Monoi infused oils which are pretty awesome)

*makes ~ 7 sticks, similar to these: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B073XXFS39?tag=duckduckgo-d-20&linkCode=osi&th=1&psc=1

Steps
1. Melt coconut oil in excess of what is needed, then measure liquid fraction (16 TBSP or 1 Cup)
2. Shave 4 oz of beeswax into smaller-ish pieces, then melt those into the already melted coconut oil over lowest possible heat.
3. Mix in the baking soda and bentonite clay and combine well.
4. Add in your desired scents - remember a few drops of essential oil goes a long way! (OD'ed on adding peppermint oil once...and Minty Pits was born!)
5. Once oils are mixed in and scent is to your liking, add in 1-2 TSP of Hydrogen Peroxide while stirring. This will "fluff" the mixture as it reacts and is neutralized by the baking soda, making it easier to pack into the deodorant sticks and easier to apply due to the many small air pockets it creates.
6. Turn off heat and load your empty sticks (I've been re-using the same ones now for at least 7 years!) Usually a spoon is all that is needed to fill them up.



 
pollinator
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Location: Clemson, SC ("new" Zone 8a)
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Casey Pfeifer wrote:...add in 1-2 TSP of Hydrogen Peroxide while stirring. This will "fluff" the mixture as it reacts and is neutralized by the baking soda, making it easier to pack into the deodorant sticks and easier to apply due to the many small air pockets it creates.



Hey, that's a nice touch!  I'll have to try that.

And thanks for including photos.  Worth a thousand words.

I award an apple : )
 
pollinator
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Location: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada -- Zone 5a
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Just adding my thoughts, in case it gives anyone an idea that may work for them.

I've always used more natural products, but for some reason around 15 years ago, I started using antiperspirant again, against my better judgement. It did not go well. For a few years, I felt like I was constantly dealing with an odor problem. It seemed to make things worse, not better. And it seemed to soak into the armpit part of my t-shirts, and no amount of washing them helped much... they're be good fresh from the wash for only a few hours. So always consider that your clothes may be where some smell is coming from.

Where I'm at these days: Most days I don't use any kind of deodorant, and sniff tests tend to pass with flying colours! If there is ever a day where it's not great (maybe due to stress, tight fabric, hot sweaty day and need of a shower) I will use this concoction: Put one drop or less of tea tree essential oil (or perhaps rosemary, lemongrass, oregano, or other good choice) in my palm. Add a few spritzes/splashes of lavender water or rose water (hydrosols) and mix with my finger. Apply and rub in well. Wipe with old towel. Repeat. This makes a good, quick freshen-up when time is tight. (I do this fresh every time and don't mix up a "batch" in advance... the oil and hydrosol would separate in a bottle, and I feel the strength and integrity of the oil is better this way.)

I also occasionally will use my salt crystal stick, which I probably spent $5 on and have had for many years. I like it, but I don't need it daily.

Other key things:
- In the shower, I do a thorough scrub with soap (right now, a basic health food store sea salt soap)... you know how they say to sing "Happy Birthday" when you wash your hands and scrub? Well, I do that with my armpits. :0) Rinse and repeat. Remember that those little bacteria multiply throughout the day, so by killing as many as possible, they're starting with very low numbers and it will take them much longer to multiply.
- I wax my armpits. No hair there helps A LOT. I notice a difference when the hair is growing back.
- Carefully dry after bathing/showering. Sometimes this involves a few seconds with a hair dryer in our humid summers.
- I also noticed things were better after stopping the wheat/gluten 6 years ago. I had originally done that to help with terrible stomach aches--and it worked wonders! I suffer greatly if I try to eat it. But it also may have helped with this issue. I also eat a lot of greens and veggies and try to drink a lot of water.

Ok, that was a lot, but it's specifically what I've figured out for myself over the years, and it's working brilliantly for me. Hope it may help someone else.


 
Matthew Nistico
pollinator
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Location: Clemson, SC ("new" Zone 8a)
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Heidi Schmidt wrote:- I wax my armpits. No hair there helps A LOT. I notice a difference when the hair is growing back.



Very true.  I mentioned above that I trim mine every few weeks, and while not as complete a job as shaving, even that helps a lot.  I also find it more comfortable, once you're used to it at least.

One should consider why armpit hair exists in the first place.  Humans stand apart from other primates as "the naked ape," emphasis on "naked," though this of course varies in degree from race to race and individual to individual.  But even the most smooth-skinned Japanese still has three areas guaranteed to sport dense growth of hair: on top of their heads, under their armpits, and on their crotch.  Why should this be, evolutionarily speaking?

Well, hair on your head is easy to figure out: it protects your scalp and neck from the sun.  But what about the other two?  What useful purpose is there to pit hair and pubic hair, so much so that it overrode whatever positive attribute there was to shedding fur (and actually I couldn't guess what that was) which led natural selection to breed bare-skinned hominids in the first place?

It was the need to maintain pheromonal communication between individuals.  Pubic hair and armpit hair act as wicks to better disperse our personal scents, located conveniently adjacent to some of our major glands.  I suppose the fact that this hair also serves to harbor stink generating bacteria is immaterial to natural selection.  It certainly didn't bother our primitive ancestors enough to keep them from mating.

Unfortunately, this is inconsistent with the more delicate sensibilities of modern Western civilization.  Personally I'm all for pheromonal communication, but I'd really just as soon not stink, thank you very much.  So shave it all, I say!  Or keep it trimmed if shaving sounds too maintenance intensive and/or violates the aesthetic of your preferred gender identity.
 
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Location: Russia, ~250m altitude, zone 6a, Moscow oblast, in the greater Sergeiv Posad reigon.
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A few drops of frankincense essential oil in a spray bottle of water.
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