Homemade Homemaker: Deodorant
Since I’ve started going more natural and homemade in my house, many of my friends have been asking me how I make things and how much it all costs. Many of them were intimidated by buying supplies, finding the time, making the mess, learning on their own, etc. So today I had my first “homemade homemaker” class, where I invite a bunch of friends into my kitchen, provide all the materials, and let them make cleaners and personal care items in my kitchen.
The first item we made was deodorant. Here’s the recipe, it makes enough for one average-sized roll-up container. Items needed:
- 1/8 cup arrowroot powder
- 1/8 cup baking soda
- 2 ½ Tbsp coconut oil
- 1 heaped Tbsp beeswax pellets
- 8-10 drops tea tree oil
- 8-10 drops oil of choice (lavender works well for women, orange oil for men)
Add all the ingredients in a small pot and put it on medium heat on your stove. Stir every once in a while, until everything is melted (the beeswax takes the longest, but it’s still within a couple minutes), and then stir well to incorporate the powders into the mixture so that it is nice and smooth. It will be a slightly thick, cream colored liquid. Take an empty and clean deodorant container, twist it back down so that the bottom piece is as low as it will go, and pour the mixture into the container. Allow to cool for a few hours.
This can easily be doubled if you have more containers to fill. It should be good for about a year. It will get really soft in warm temps, so don’t leave it in a hot car! Also, this is softer than conventional deodorant. Don’t crank it up high when applying it. Just barely raise it. The coconut oil makes it apply smoothly and thinly, it doesn’t take much!
Here’s all the tips and cost saving info:
Here’s the breakdown on all the ingredients:
Arrowroot powder: $7 for a 20oz package at Whole foods (best price I found). I found it for the same price on amazon, but there you had to pay shipping. I could not find it at my regular grocery store, but my friend found it in the baking aisle at Dierbergs. Arrowroot powder is a starch that can be a corn starch substitute, but unlike cornstarch is not a sugary bacteria attractant. 1 oz is used in the recipe, so the cost is $0.35 per stick.
Baking soda: $0.67 at Aldi. Baking soda is a natural deodorizer. With 1 oz used in the recipe it costs $0.04 per stick.
Coconut oil: $15 for 30oz on amazon. I saved money by subscribing and getting it automatically shipped every 3 months. I’ve seen it at Trader Joes, Whole Foods and other nutrition stores. I’m sure some can be found at most grocery stores, though I’m not sure of the quality. I didn’t price shop at other locations because I already had some. Coconut oil is a natural moisturizer. Just over 1 oz is used in this recipe. This is the most expensive ingredient at $1 per stick.
Beeswax: The best price I found on amazon was $10.50 for a pound of pellets. You can also buy it in a bar and grate it. I got mine from a local beekeeper. This is what helps it harden to use as a stick and help it stick to your skin. About 0.5 oz is used, so about $0.35 per stick.
Essential oils: These are a bit of an investment, but can be used for many things (first aid, diffusing, personal care and cleaning items). The essential oil kit I bought awhile back was on amazon for $20. Since you use drops at a time I don’t have a break down, but it’s honestly just a few cents per stick. These can be left out if you don’t want a scent.
So, if we round up the cost on all the ingredients, it costs less than $2 to make a stick of deodorant The cheapest “all natural” deodorant I found while searching on line was around $4.30 for an unscented 2.2oz stick.
You can reuse old stick containers or keep it in a baby food jar and apply it with your fingers. I made a larger batch and put the extra in a baby food jar and plan to melt it when my stick is empty and pour it in my container so I don’t have to make it as often.
This is also safe to use on young children, I plan on my daughter using this on days I know she’ll get sweaty.
Warning: your armpits are a natural detox area, which is why they smell. This is also why with some people (like me) it seems like I constantly have to switch brands or go stronger…basically my body was sweating through the antiperspirant. I also would sweat more in other places of my body (gross). That said, when you first go natural with a deodorant and stop using antiperspirant, you will sweat more for a few days and seem more stinky. Stick it out. Don’t put more on. Pick a week where you don’t care. I find now that I don’t sweat or stink that bad because my body isn’t working so hard to work past my product, plus I’m ingesting less bad things to get out.
Shared with: Fellowship Fridays