Homemade {Baking Soda Free} Deodorant

Baking soda Free deodorant

I loved loved loved my old homemade deodorant and used it for over 2 years until one day I noticed my underarms getting irritated. Of course, I thought nothing of it and went on my merry way using it. That was until I started getting a bad and painful rash. Literally, my armpits started peeling, gross! Was that TMI? Sorry.

So I tried a million things like: taking a break from the homemade stuff for months and then going back to it, making other recipes with shea butter, and I even tried rubbing apple cider vinegar in my pits (to balance out the alkaline of the baking soda). Nothing worked and I was super bummed.

Then I saw somewhere about just using essential oils! Perfect! Or so I thought. It helped against smell until I did some serious stress sweating at work and I think I could’ve made people faint from my stank. Was that too much TMI again? Luckily, this happened because it gave me another idea! Why not make a recipe similar to the original, without the baking soda and a higher concentration of essential oils?

homemade baking soda free deodorant 2

Homemade {Baking Soda Free} Deodorant



Side note: You could probably use another kind of oil or butter in place of coconut. I have not personally tried it though.
Also, you can totally half this recipe!

Directions: Mix all the ingredients together and place in a jar. It is easier to mix when the coconut oil is slightly melted.

To Use: Apply a small amount with hands. If you use peppermint, wash your hands after you apply because if you touch your face it will have a cool, tingling feeling for awhile. Not that I learned this from experience or anything.. Ha

I have been using this for about 2 weeks now and love it! No burning or rashes! Yay! Plus, it handles my stink way better than just the essential oils! Just so you know there are a ton of people who can use the original recipe without any issues. Some of us on the other hand cannot probably do to the alkaline property in the deodorant.

Have you had issues with homemade deodorant with baking soda in the past? What have you found that has helped?

*Links may contain affiliate links


  1. Karas says

    I quit using deodorant about 9 months ago and started just using straight coconut oil. I have been very pleased with the results! I never stink…ever! When I made the switch I was constantly checking and making my husband check, too. Yes, I stuck my armpit in his face and asked him to sniff. I haven’t had one stink! The only thing I had to get used to is the feeling of not being completely dry like with traditional antiperspirants. I’m sure you have already experienced that with your homemade stuff. Anyway, it’s just one less thing I have to make. I just keep coconut oil in a jar in the bathroom and use it for various things. I asked my husband if it’s normal to apply your deodorant with your fingertips and rub the excess in the ends of your hair as a leave in conditioner. He said “no, but we are not a normal family.”

    • Anonymous says

      I use just coconut oil also. Likewise, I get rid of the oil on my fingers by running my fingers through my hair. So easy and effective.

      • mardi says

        Haha my hair was looking a bit frizzy the other day opened the cupboard ahhh!!! My homemade deoderent!! No one will know, I told myself, as i skipped through the few ingredients lol glad to know im not alone!

        Iam so glad to know you can just omit the Bake soda i was getting ghe irritation too Yaya!!

    • says

      Hahaha Karas! I do the same thing to my husband too! I wish I could just use coconut oil but I think my stink is way to strong for that! But that would be a great idea for others. I used to feel weird about applying with my fingers but now I’m totally used to it and it feels weird doing it any other way!

    • Marsha says

      I do the same thing or just rub it on my pits as I am moisturizing head to toe…I LOVE THE COCONUT OIL…the other day I was baking bread and used it to “grease” my pan…then just rubbed the excess into my hands and elbows and arms.

  2. lisa says

    Thank you for this recipe. I too get a rash, it doesn’t bother me but it looks horrible. I’ll be trying this tomorrow.

  3. Marika says

    I made this deodorant today, because I too get a terrible rash of baking soda. My version is much more liquid. Don´t know if it is too warm inside our house or is it because I used corn starch. Have you noticed that the scent fades in the jar? I think 40 drops of lavender and 20 drops of tea tree oil is too strong for my nose, but I don´t want to smell bad. By the way, I would not switch the coconut oil for another oil. I have read that coconut oil makes the good bacteria grow in your arm pits and that is why you don´t smell when you use coconut oil as a deodorant.

    • says

      It may be to warm in your house since coconut oil can melt. I would just stick it in the fridge and see if that helps! I feel like the scent fades after awhile. Not sure if its my nose just getting used to it or the oils scent fading.

    • says

      Even though coconut oil has great benefits for others, coconut allergies do exist, as people can be allergic to anything; nothing gets past the “potential allergens” list.

      For those who are allergic to coconut (very rare, so unfortunate :l *raises hand*), SEED oils tend to work well. Sunflower seed oil, hemp seed oil, sesame seed oil… it depends on which works best for you, as they tend to work differently for everyone.

      Thanks for the recipe! I’m going to adapt it into a 100% allergen-free recipe for myself.<3

  4. Tasha says

    I’m like you, I can only use my baking soda deodorant once in awhile and only using caution (dab, never rub–ouch!). I will definitely be trying this out for myself. My armpits and I thank you!

  5. lyn says

    I make a great spray on deodorant . I also had rash issues with Baking soda so i did some googling and found out plain old salt is good also.
    In a small spray bottle ..
    2-3 teaspoons of salt (preferably unrefined salt like himilayan or celtic)
    1/2 teaspoon of water soluble lavender oil (or your choice of water soluble oil)
    Fill with water.
    Tea tree oil is good for a mans version. Add more salt if you find you still get odour.

    • Lynn Wood says

      I used salt under my arms before and it did not work for me. I now have really ugly scars under my arms from where the salt rubbed me raw in some areas. However, I do have sensitive skin and this may have been the reason.

  6. says

    I’ll bet this smells great. I’ve used a baking soda deodorant for a little over two years and only have issues with it when I’ve freshly shaven. I generally shower at night and don’t apply deo until morning, so usually there are no issues. It’s when I forget and apply right out of the shower after shaving that it irritates a lot. Thanks for sharing your new-and-improved recipe!
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  7. Margaret says

    I will have to try, and the Lyn’s recipe too.
    I made a spray deodorant with jillsgoodthings recipe but two unpleasant things happened, i miscalculated the liquid ounces when converting measurements ( do Brits and Americans even speak the same language at all, all measures are different) and got a very oily solution, and since I added too much lemon essential oil, I got a skin reaction like you guys did with baking soda. Must try this one
    Amy, how big is your cup, could you do your recipe in millilitres -I can not do the measure conversions! Pretty please.
    Thanks for sharing, love your ideas

  8. Lilian says

    Unfortunately I too got a terrible rash already the second day of using the baking soda deo. I made your sodafree one and am now using it together with a “deostone”, the type they sometimes sell in Thai shops. So I apply stone first, then let it dry and after that I apply your sodafree stuff. It works a dream; no rash, no stink :)!

  9. says

    Thank you so much! I, too, developed burning pits two months after starting my beloved homemade baking
    Soda deodorant. I thought that the arrowroot/coconut oil combo would probably work just fine, but it is very comforting to hear that someone else has tried it before wasting more expensive ingredients! My light scent combo is a few drops tea tree for antibacterial properties (you can’t smell it), sweet orange, and lime. It’s very tropical smelling with the coconut.

  10. Melanie says

    Hi, just wondering if you could make this recipe into a deodorant stick like your other recipe by adding beeswax? Have you tried? I don’t mind applying with my fingers but for traveling in warmer weather bringing a leaky jar is a bit of a pain! Thanks!

  11. says

    Ah, you are a lifesaver. I’m a Texas girl and I already sweat a good bit as it is….but summer is going to be here before I even know it. And I don’t want to keep buying store deodorant but yet when I tried a few different recipes with any sort of baking soda even the slightest bit my armpits broke out after a day of using it. I was pretty much hopeless and thought “Oh geez do I stink or do I pollute my body with chemicals.” Then by pure luck as I was looking through a list of uses for coconut oil I saw that you had a baking soda free version. Which pretty much made me jump for joy, though I have yet to test it out. I hope it works for me too. :) I just want to thank you in advance for not only this recipe but everything you do.

  12. Sonja A Gjokas says

    I tried using straight coconut oil (pharmacutical grade) with sent added. it worked about a week,then i started stinkin.so now im going to try your recepie.

  13. Kj says

    I was having trouble with the baking soda in homemade deodorant also, but I didn’t feel like coconut oil alone was getting the job done for me. So I started making it the same way but I was but omitted the baking soda and replaced it with 1 tablespoon of benotite clay to help me feel a little more dry and protected. It works great! I also add a mixture of lemon, lavender, and rosemary essential oils.

  14. Melissa Burke says

    Can you use 1/4 cup shea butter and 1/4 cup coconut oil? I have tons of she butter left from my first attempt at making homemade deodorant

  15. Karen says

    Hello! I’m just in the terrible rash after using for 2 months my beloved baking soda- coconut oil deodorant. What did you do to heal your skin?? I feel irritation, itch and they they are turning brown. I hope it heals and get back to normal. HELP!!

    • says

      O no I’m sorry! That is not a fun stage to be in. When I broke out I started using this for a few months and it got much better. I have gone back to the original recipe. I started showering/shaving in the evening so my pits could rest during the night before putting on the deodorant in the morning and that has seemed to do the trick! If I have to shower in the morning and shave I will use this recipe. So basically I have both recipes on hand all the time! Hope you get to healing Karen

    • Ann says

      I had the same problem with the baking soda in my very favorite home made deodorant after breaking out horribly with a rash and dark brown, leathery skin. It was mostly my fault, as I ran out of Arrow Root Powder and decided to “compensate” with extra baking soda, not knowing the effect it would have. Then I shaved. Wowza Ouch!I was horrified. I Googled and found that the baking soda was indeed the culprit and as I continued my search I found a very soothing, healing recipe to apply and within a day or two, my underarms were feeling MUCH better and the rash went away within a week. I just combined 2 teaspoons coconut oil and 4 teaspoons Tea Tree Essential Oil. Hope it helps!

    • Anonymous says

      I developed a bad rash within a week of starting the baking soda deodorant. Hydracortisone cream cleared it up in less than a day, but I’ve been afraid to try the homemade deodorant again. I think I’ll try this and just omit the baking soda. Hope it works!

  16. JM says

    Hi Amy,

    Thanks for the tips! Coconut oil doesn’t bode well for me, not sure why. I experimented with some homemade coconut oil-based deodorants and none of them have done the trick. I like Lavilin (buy it on Amazon). It’s really great, but we’re trying to cut back on expenses, so will try this out!

  17. Veronica says

    Hi Amy!
    I started using the deodorant with baking soda and for the first three weeks it was totally awesome, literally a miracle in a jar. But then my armpits started to rash, making my skin very irritated and darker than my natural skin tone.
    So I’ll try this recipe of yours, but only with lavender essential oil, since EOs are really expensive here where I live (I’m from Brazil). Do you think it is going to be good as well? And was this baking soda free recipe as effective as the original one with it?
    Thank you!!

  18. says

    I use straight milk of magnesia in a spray bottle. It’s wet, but has been a miracle for me! Works better than any natural or chemical type I’ve ever tried. This sounds good, though, and I will try it as an alternate. Probably a good idea to switch off once in a while.

  19. Jenn says

    I too have had the same issues with baking soda. Thanks for this recipe! I was wondering if there is a benefit to using arrowroot powder rather than corn starch? Thanks!

  20. says

    Hi all,
    Just wanted to share my experience. I used the amazing baking soda deodorant for a few weeks before I noticed a darkening under my arms followed by a horrible red raw rash. I used coconut oil to help clear it up and then a magic balm called “the green balm” if you haven’t used it I strongly suggest you do as it’s amazing (not endorsing just telling you my experience) the balm took away all the dark skin by making it peel away and then left baby soft skin. Then I went back to the oil baking soda after, 2 applications the rash and dark skin was back. So now I am using the balm and coconut oil to clear it and have just made a batch of baking soda free deodorant. Fingers crossed it works! Xx

  21. says

    I too was enjoying my homemade deodorant that works incredibly well and I never got a rash but the skin under my arms started to get dark almost grey in some areas and it was very bothersome. I made a lightening serum that worked like magic but started to become less effective the longer I used the baking soda deo. =( I dont want to go back to regular store bought deodorants so I will give this recipe a try. I have tried so many different kinds of DIY Deo Recipes that were BS free but they dont work at all for me. I really hope to find a solution to my funk! Help!

  22. Pauline says

    Hi, i made this today but i did not have some of the ingredients mentioned above

    instead, i used the coconut oil, cornstarch and sweet almond oil

    do you think its okay?

  23. says

    Thank you so much for posting this! I just made my second batch of homemade deodorant w/BS and after one use have a rash again. When I made it before I thought the rash was due to using a lower quality essential oil for scent. However, I didn’t use any EO’s this time and the same thing happened. So, I started searching and found this recipe. I have already made it up and am going to use it tomorrow! :)

    Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

  24. Lucas says

    Thank you so much for this! i’m going to try it. I had the same exact problem as you. i used the deodorant for months with no problem, but now currently still have said rash ;/ i even tried decreasing the baking soda & it didn’t help. it is really upsetting because store bought deodorant just plain doesn’t work, i think it even makes you smell worse! again thank you for this!

    also, for those of you looking to heal your armpits, i just read on a different site to use a tbsp of apple cider vinegar mixed with a cup of distilled water, apply that twice a day, no deodorant, until you heal up. then before putting on your deodorant apply the vinegar mixture , let it dry & apply deodorant as normal. it’s supposed to balance your pH. i’m going to try this for myself as well!

  25. Shauna says

    I am so glad I found this! I have been using a homemade deodorant that a friend gave me for a while now. I don’t know everything that’s in it, but I know there is a lot of baking soda. Lately my pits have been peeling, red, and sore. Ew! I figured it must be the BS so I started a hunt for something new. So many online have either baking soda, beeswax (i’m vegan), or both. Your recipe looks great and I can’t wait to try it!

  26. Zaufy says

    I have used the mineral “Alum’ very successfully. It has no scent and is effective defence against odours and sweat. It works for 12 hours. Just keep the rock mineral in the bathroom and moisten it and rub it on your underarms. Leaves no residue and is natural.. Also treats dark underarms! :)

  27. Nadine says

    I use something similar to your original recipe (that includes the baking soda), but I added beeswax pellets to help solidify it. Initially, I did have some rash and irritation at my underarms, but that has since subsided. The one thing I do have is permanent brown spots at both armpits. I have read that it does happen sometimes with natural deodorant, but it is a little unsightly. But, if that’s the only reaction I have to deal with, I’m OK with it.

  28. Anonymous says

    Just tried the baking soda deodorant and I did get a rash after day 3. I used Thayers rose petal witch hazel w aloe and cleared up rash in one night. Yay! Will definitely try this recipe. Thanks.

  29. Shelly says

    Great deodorant! Made it and have been using it daily. Love that it really works. Better than expensive natural whole foods deodorants. Even hubby was impressed.

  30. Anna says

    Just love this recipe, but after a while, I got a horrible rash. So, I want to try the arrowroot powder, but can’t find it on IHerb, is arrowroot powder the same as arrowroot starch?
    Hoping for an answer!

  31. Margie says

    I pinned your recipe for deodorant to share with customers who come into our health food store looking for the healthiest alternatives. Thanks for the recipe!
    For the truly adventurous – Just wanted to let you know that neither my hubby nor I have needed to use deodorant of any kind for quite a few years now. We began our journey into veganism about 13 years ago and have been growing in knowledge and health ever since. Believe me, eating plant strong takes away the stink from your underarms, for the most part.

  32. Rebecca says

    Love your site! I am wearing your fabulous deodorant right now! It feels great and smells great but it’s not really working for me, (I’m on my second day). Did you or anyone notice that it took a while to work, like a detox period maybe? Thanks!

  33. Elsie says

    ive used baking soda deodorant for two years. Turns out, I’ve been sensitive to the soda all along, always had rashes and itching. Recently the burning got so bad, I *gulp* went back to using regular antiperspirant. I hate using that stuff, and my pits always stink by mid day. I’m so excited to have found this recipe. I’ve made two little jars, so I can have one at work in case I need a bit of help later. I’ve got some on now and so far, no burning!

  34. Michelle says

    It’s interesting…my armpits had a reaction to the baking soda version after about 2 months of use, too. I have a suspicion it had to do with some settling after mixing. I noticed toward the end of my jar, it got a little more gritty feeling. I didn’t think anything of it until I got home from an especially sweaty day and my armpits were on fire and I couldn’t stop scratching them! It’s been 3 days without use and they’re still red but not as itchy or burning. Can’t wait to try this.

  35. Damaris says

    So glad to have found this recipe. I will definetely replace my old deodorant with this one. The baking soda gave me a rash/burn on my armpits a few weeks into using it, as well as making them darker.

  36. Amanda J says

    Love this! Accidentally dropped my first batch that was in a glass container. This batch I will be much more careful with. Side note my mixture isn’t White like shown in your photo its a tad greyish. Did I do something wrong?

  37. says

    I was using Toms deodorant for years… it’s okay but I now use purebodyscent because of the reviews I read. I can honestly say this is the best deodorant I have ever used. They have a large selection of scents. I did a 3 day road trip, applied the deodorant once before I left and after day three I never had any odor… matter of fact, I could still smell the deodorant.

  38. Dan says

    Have you considered selling this here or via an Etsy store? Would love to try it without buying the ingredients in bulk and would gladly buy from you!

  39. Anonymous says

    I started using natural deodorant bought from a local vendor. I didn’t have an odor or anything but I noticed my armpits became black and really sore. I think she used a lot of baking soda…so I have discontinued use for the last week. I will make my own without the baking soda and I pray my pits get better soon. Thanks for the recipe baking soda free.

  40. Stephanie says

    Has anyone had any success adding beeswax to this to make a solid? I am getting ready to attempt to make today but would prefer a solid. On the hunt locally for arrowroot powder right now. Over the past month I have managed to get rid of all store bought products in beauty and cleaning and loving it. Wasn’t quite ready to give up my not so natural deodorant but after reading this I am sure going to try!!!

  41. Beverly says

    I just made this at 8:00 am in the morning and can’t wait to use it. This is a very easy recipe and I’m trying to get away from all the store bought stuff and this seemed like a good place to start…:) Thanks for the recipe I can’t wait to see how it works for me….

  42. Lauren says

    Hi Amy! Thanks so much for posting this. I’m glad to see others have also been recently commenting. I also have had the same issues with the rash/darkened skin from the baking soda. I ended up switching back to a brand I won’t call out here but that is aluminum-free but still has tricolsan (which I really don’t want hanging out on my body all day). I’ve been searching for a natural alternative for years and been mostly through ones the just don’t work or that irritate my skin and am currently using one that’s basically a compromise in my eyes (I feel unhappy about it every time I apply).

    Anyway, I’m so looking forward to trying this! I see that the tea tree oil and the lavender are antibacterial, but I’m wondering if the second list of oils have any properties that make them necessary ingredients or if I can sub them for any other combos? I’m actually considering doing mostly lavender and a little tea tree since those are the only two I currently have. Thanks again!! – Lauren :)

    • Lauren says

      Just an update, I made this with lavender and tea tree oils. It worked pretty well the first week, just had to re-apply about once halfway through the day and usually do with all deodorant. It then ended up not working so well come the second week. :( I used for about two and a half weeks total until I had to try something else because I was smelling real funky. I read about magnesium oil being a good deodorant so I added a tablespoon of that to my about halfway done jar, worked a little better but not completely. Tried adding another tablespoon today and it ended up turning into something similar to gritty Play-Do- woops! Haha, oh man, trying to find a natural deodorant suited for you is really a venture. While I think this is an awesome recipe, I’m sad to say it just hasn’t worked for my body (and please note I smell, like, a lot). Will definitely be trying again with ingredients from this recipe and the magnesium oil in different quantities- big thank you again for this post!!

  43. says

    I just made this recepe and am realy exciting to find out if it works. The only thing I was wondering, is: don’t your clothes become oily from this deodorant?

  44. Erin says

    I dumped my commercial deodorant in the trash after a long afternoon conversation with a friend on the terrors of commercial deodorant ingredients. I had speculations quitting cold turkey, so decided to do a 2 week detox with Apple Cider Vinegar. I simply took a tablespoon of ACV with two tablespoons water and mix together. Applied on morning and night for the first few days, currently I’m nearing the end of my 2 week detox but I might make it three just because. I made a batch of this deodorant though and am using it between detox periods (when I need to go out, etc.) and it’s been working great!!! I do notice like a fellow commenter said that (you don’t feel as dry) but I have my days. Sometimes I feel totally dry and other days I don’t. BUT! No more sweat stains or overly sweaty pits hurray!!! Great recipe without the baking soda! I plan to make my own sunscreen eventually too! Thank you!

  45. says

    Oh my goodness, I have had exactly the same thing! I used mine for 2 years and then last year I developed a fungal infection under my arms. It took me until now, stranded for 3 days inside the house and not using deodorant for it to clear up. I use apple cider vinegar to clean and nothing worked. Now I realise all of a sudden it was the bicarb. Didn’t realise because it worked fantastically for me so far which is such a shame I can;t use it anymore. Thank goodness I can replace it with cornstarch and add in more tea tree. Coconut oil alone doesn’t work for me

  46. Lipsia says

    Thank you for posting this. I have been using natural/organic deodorant for about a month and half and it does have baking soda. My under arms turned really dark and the creases are red. What should I do to help them heal? The deodorant I use works well, the only downside is the darkness and rash.

    • says

      Hey Christine. I was using Aura Cacia for a long time because that’s whats available at our local co op. But I’m switching to a better essential oil like plant therapy.

  47. Tracy says

    I too have had the bad peeling rash. My genius husband says the alkalinity of the baking soda is too strong for our bodies so we balanced it our with ascorbic acid or vitamin c. I just added some to my mix and my rashes don’t happen any more.

  48. Sheila says

    I made a batch of this deodorant tonight. I too can’t take the baking soda. It looks bad and then itches, oooohhhh the itching was bad. Anyway. I knew I needed something else so I searched Pinterest and found this recipe. So glad to find something that can be used on the skin and hair.:-)

  49. Nidia says

    Thank you for this recipe, I will definitely try it. I made a recipe using the bicarbonate of Soda aka baking soda and it burned my arm pits. I am looking forward to testing this recipe and finding out if it will work.

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