Switching to a Clean Deodorant

Why It’s Time For You to Switch to a Clean Deodorant








Choosing clean deodorant has been a huge part of my big picture wellness journey — and the beautiful part is, I have actually seen firsthand how this has greatly improved my hormones, energy, and overall wellness.

While applying deodorant may seem like a trivial everyday task, it is a major way you can contribute to toxic build-up in your body or contribute to nourishing your wellness with pure, good-for-you ingredients.

When it comes to switching to clean skincare and beauty, deodorant should be top on your list as it is something most humans wear daily and often contains some of the worst ingredients for your health. 

I get it, I was skeptical too but let’s break down the science and give you some good clean deodorant alternatives that actually keep you smelling glamorous!

Learn more about clean beauty >

Why It’s Time for You to Switch to Clean Deodorant

Your body absorbs it all day long

Our skin is our largest organ and absorbs everything we put on it, both good and bad. Deodorant is something most people wear all day long and often even at night. Even though it’s meant for external use, whatever ingredients are in your deodorant – including the inactive ingredients – are entering your body and bloodstream constantly. 

Swipe after swipe, hour after hour, week after week, the ingredients in a small deodorant stick add up to make a big impact.

Our armpit area contains a high concentration of lymph nodes which are a part of our body’s natural filtering system responsible for detoxification, immune response, and fluid balance. Using clean deodorant minimizes additional toxins from entering the body, allowing the lymphatic system to use its resources to carry out its natural jobs and function more efficiently.

Ingredients matter both short term + long term

While certain ingredients can cause immediate effects like headaches, skin irritation, or dizziness, many ingredients can build up in the body, brain, and fatty tissue, in particular women’s breast tissue, increasing the risk of breast cancer.

  • Aluminum: A common ingredient in most deodorants, aluminum is a neurotoxin linked to Alzheimer’s, multiple sclerosis and other neurological disorders. Aluminum salts can cross the blood-brain barrier and build up in the brain with time. It has also been negatively linked to fetal development.
  • Artificial Fragrance: Linked with a host of issues including headaches, hormone imbalances, skin sensitivities and more, these are trade secrets and can contain thousands of toxic ingredients without a company having to disclose them. There’s really no need to use synthetic fragrances as there are plenty of clean deodorant options that will leave you smelling great without the harmful effects. 
  • Tricoslan: an antimicrobial compound that can cause toxicity and reproductive and thyroid issues
  • Parabens + Phthalates: endocrine disruptors that can alter our hormone function as well as introduce plastics into the body. Microplastics can enter the placenta, sadly it’s something we are being exposed to starting at conception. Dr Leo Trasande’s book Sicker, Fatter, Poorer is a fascinating read on this topic and how it’s affecting generations. 

Pay close attention to greenwashing. There is little to no regulation in the beauty industry—fancy marketing and good branding don’t always mean a product is safe for you.

Even some aluminum-free deodorants that are marketed as natural alternatives have other questionable chemicals buried in their ingredient lists. Sadly, many companies are taking advantage of trends and using emotions to appeal to you!

Sweat is good for you

Sweating is one of the body’s main elimination pathways to aid with detox and eliminate toxins from the inside out. Traditional antiperspirants with the help of ingredients like aluminum literally block your sweat glands from sweating and eliminating. This would be like plugging your kitchen sink while you are doing dishes—stopping a natural process from occurring can have long-term and serious effects.

After you switch to a clean deodorant with natural ingredients, once your body starts to regulate, sweating and eliminating naturally, you’ll notice you sweat less (yay!) and you may even notice your underarm odor changes and smells less.

You may experience a ‘detox phase’ of 1-2 weeks after switching to natural deodorant when you sweat more and your body odor changes—that’s a good thing as it means your body is cleansing that build up of toxins.  

I’m 6 years into using natural deodorant and notice, even on busy days in the hot summer, I don’t sweat that much and rarely smell. While we don’t want to prevent sweating, natural deodorant can decrease the amount you sweat. It’s a beautiful process to watch the body regulate!

To aid in the detoxification process, I recommend dry brushing (to stimulate lymphatic flow), walking, and drinking plenty of water throughout the day.  

Think big picture

Hormone imbalances, behavioral issues, infertility, thyroid dysfunction, and cancer are on the rise in modern times. Although there is no guarantee that switching to any particular one of the different natural deodorants will prevent you from experiencing these situations, it does check all the boxes of benefiting your health by reducing your exposure to bad stuff.

We may not see the impact of these decisions for years or they may manifest themselves in different ways from person to person. Always keep the big picture in mind and always think long-term! What you do now impacts your future…and your future little ones, if that is something you desire.

Clean deodorants actually work

I was skeptical, especially after tossing so many ‘natural’ deodorants that just didn’t work. But now that I’ve made the switch I could never go back. Natural deodorant really does work all day long and gives off pure, natural, and refreshing fresh scents like Blue Tansy and Fresh Coconut.

The benefits of less sweating and smelling as well as the overall health benefits outweigh all. 

Our top picks: Clean Deodorant

Primally Pure //

My husband and I have been using, and loving, this for years! It one of the best natural deodorants that truly works and you’ll smell crisp and fresh all day with only a swipe or two. It’s a great fit if you have sensitive skin as the blend is very gentle. The biggest benefit is you’ll seriously sweat way less long term and the scents are so light + refreshing it’s no wonder Primally Pure tops the best sellers list for clean deodorants.

My husband’s favorite scent is the clean scent of Charcoal and I personally love Blue Tansy. The only negative I have, and really I’ve hardly ever noticed this is that sometimes this formula can seem a bit on the thicker side when applying. The biggest positive is that it works great even during busiest days of summer!

FLOURISH for 10% off your first order. 

Beautycounter// I LOVE that this natural deodorizer is a super sustainable and eco-friendly option that comes in a refillable container, so you can easily swap out scents with minimal waste. The scents are very light and feel like you just stepped into a spa. It’s also great for sensitive skin types. 

The beauty industry especially sees SO much waste. Products and empties are quickly discarded sometimes even after a few uses. Beautycounter’s re-fillable deodorant cuts down on greenhouse emissions, fossil fuels, shipping packaging, and water use by 47%! < That’s a difference that matters!

The beauty industry especially sees SO much waste. Products and empties are quickly discarded sometimes even after a few uses. Beautycounter’s re-fillable deodorant cuts down on greenhouse emissions, fossil fuels, shipping packaging, and water use by 47%! < That’s a difference that matters!

Fresh Coconut and Rose are my favorites. This natural formula with natural coconut oil, shea butter and beeswax is not as thick as Primally Pure’s and feels more like a traditional stick of deodorant. 

CLEANFORALL20 for 20% off your first order. 

Troubleshooting your clean deodorant 

  • Stains on your shirt: You most likely are using too much. I’ve personally not experienced this issue with either of the brands mentioned but less is more. You only need 1-2 swipes for hours of odor protection and dry underarms.
  • Brand was working and all of a sudden it isn’t: Everyone’s body chemistry is unique—finding the right blend of ingredients and scents can vary from person to person and can also vary depending on the season of life you are in. For example, you may need to change up your deodorant during pregnancy or postpartum.
  • Smelling after the switch to natural deodorant: This is normal and actually a sign your body is releasing toxins. The best way you can support this detox period by walking, exercising, drinking lots of water and getting fresh air. I don’t recommend switching to natural deodorant right before a big event just in case you do have a bit of a transition period of detoxing. Not everyone does.

leave a comment

  1. Lynn Lewis says:

    Hi Caroline,
    Is there any difference in the scents for this deodorant as to how effective they are … or just smell?

    • Caroline Potter says:

      yes and no! Different essential oils will interact with your bodies chemical makeup slightly differently, but mostly it will just be smell! I personally love the lavender as it is very light and refreshing!

  2. Lynn Lewis says:

    Thanks, I just ordered some!

  3. Christina says:

    Is your deo baking soda free? I’ve noticed how sensitive I am to that!

    • Caroline Potter says:

      I recommend the sensitive as it is very minimal in baking soda and I don’t have a problem with that! Everything is explained on the Primally Pure website 🙂

  4. Christine says:

    Hi Caroline, thanks for you recommendations – really great. However, do they ship to Europe? How do you get your supplies?
    I am living in Germany and Spain and have unfortunately never seen the brand here.

    Thanks, Christine

    • Caroline Potter says:

      Hi Christine!

      I have an FPO address so can get most things here 🙂 So fun you are in Spain too!

  5. Shaina says:

    I got rid of my old traditional antiperspirant about 2 years ago. I first tried another company’s regular one and then their sport one and I still can’t prevent my stink. There are some days (especially when I’m traveling or stressed) that are noticeably worse than others. I also do CrossFit. I’ve tried Googling deodorants for female CrossFitters to see what people recommend and there’s nothing out there. Will Primally Pure’s deodorant be strong enough?

    • Caroline Potter says:

      Hi Shania,

      I recently moved from Hawaii where I sweated ALOT, all the time, and never had a problem with this deodorant! I also work out every day, not quite at your level, but never noticed an issue. I know Juli Bauer cross fits and likes this one too! Hope you try it and if you do, be sure to enter the giveaway (details above!).

  6. Jana says:

    Is it possible to heal discolored skin on the face using natural products?

  7. Lacey says:

    Hi Caroline! Are the oils, mists, and body butters that contain citrus okay to use if I’m going to be in sunlight?

    • Caroline Potter says:

      yes because these are high quality oils and it is how they are distilled and the amount of the oils in the products. These citrus oils are very light and just used to add a natural pleasant smell 🙂

  8. Shaina says:

    So bummed I missed entry into the contest as I definitely want to try the deodorant based on your review. I was waiting to hear back from my rabbi regarding the rules of kashrut for beef tallow in body products. I’ll try it anyway. Thank you!

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