Do Deodorant Alternatives Actually Work? Here Are The 7 Top-Rated Swaps

Smelling bad is not a criminal offense, but it might as well be one. There is possibly nothing worse than getting a sniff of someone else's pit stench. And, if this wasn't bad enough, the parabens and the aluminum in deodorants are discouraging even the smelliest of us from opting out of the miracle deodorants. But we should know, from the suffering of saints, that miracles aren't always a good thing. And when it comes to deodorants, the not-so-nice-miracle lies in the antiperspirants which clog your pores, stopping you from sweating. Furthermore, the aluminum and parabens in these deodorants can cause breast cancer. So, it's high time we switch to deodorant alternatives.


But deodorant alternatives have quite a bad rep when sorting out your pits. In their defense, if you are switching from your standard deodorant to a more natural alternative, do not expect it to work within the first week. You need to give your pits the time to recover from the harsh no-sweat regime your regular deodorant put them under. So, if you want these alternatives to work, ensure you're giving them time (at least four weeks).

Lemon juice for your pit juice

Lemons are all you need in life; you can use them in pies and under your arms, so it's always a win-win when life gives you lemons. Making this alternative work is simple and economical, so grab some lemons.


What we love about the lemon juice alternative is that it can easily accommodate your morning routine. If you are extra like most of us, treat yourself to lemon water in the morning. And while you are cutting your lemon slices for your lemon water, squeeze a little bit of lemon juice and use a cotton ball to apply it on your armpits. So, there you have it, a glass of refreshing electrolytes and a solution for your smelly armpits.

And the fun doesn't end there; lemon juice has antibacterial properties, which will take care of odor-causing bacteria. In addition to getting rid of the smell, it will also help with lightening the skin under your armpits. Lemon juice is highly acidic, so if you have sensitive skin or if there is any sort of irritation, discontinue applying it to your skin.


You can't go wrong with coconut oil

Where there is skincare, there is coconut oil. Coconut oil is the all-in-one staple that makes an excellent deodorant alternative. Not only do the anti-bacterial properties help you keep away the stink, but it also helps moisturize your underarms and aid in combating irritation.


Using coconut oil as an alternative will save you money and energy. Since it's already in your kitchen pantry, this alternative only requires rubbing it on your armpits. But make sure you wait for it to dry before putting clothes on, as oil can easily stain.

Instead of just rubbing coconut oil straight from the bottle, we can be more civilized and make our own toxin-free deodorant. You'll only need ¼ cup of baking soda, ¼ teaspoon of essential oils, ¼ cup of arrowroot powder, and the obvious, 4 tablespoons of coconut oil. Mix it all together and store it in an air-tight container; you can melt it and pour the liquid into empty deodorant containers.

Baking soda and cornstarch

We are happy to tell you that this alternative is an easy find, and if you don't have it in your kitchen, we are certain your nearest grocery store can help you out. So, you have no excuses to resort to your toxic hazard of a deodorant.


This combination makes a fantastic team. The baking soda takes care of the smelly crisis, while the cornstarch takes care of the sweaty situation. Not sure how it works? We'll break it down for you. The antimicrobial properties in baking soda will help keep away the odor, while the absorbent properties of cornstarch will keep those pits dry.

However, baking soda is acidic and can disturb your skin's pH levels. To avoid irritation or if you have sensitive skin, do a patch test before applying it on your underarms by trying it out first on a small area of your skin. Wait 48 hours to detect any reaction, and if you're good to go, you've found yourself an easy alternative for your deodorant.

It's not witchcraft, just witch hazel

There are two reasons for using deodorant: to keep away the awful, oniony smell in our pits and to stop the wet feeling in our underarms. Well, witch hazel does both. Yes, we know it's not in everybody's pantry, but once you hear all its benefits and why it's so much better than your standard deodorant, you'll want it in your home. It is a natural astringent with anti-inflammatory properties, making it the ultimate deodorant alternative. It kills off the odor-causing bacteria and helps keep your underarms dry by absorbing the excess moisture.


Witch hazel leaves no residue behind, unlike many other alternatives, and it's quick to eliminate a bad smell. So, if you're ever in a hurry to make that stench go away, witch hazel is the way. But not everything in life is perfect, and witch hazel is no exception. Witch hazel tends to wear off quickly. So, if your choice of natural deodorant is witch hazel, ensure you're leaving the house prepared for reapplication.

Skincare and deodorant; have it all with charcoal

Charcoal is famous for its antibacterial properties and ability to absorb moisture, making it a good alternative for your armpit troubles. But it doesn't stop there. In addition to making your pit stains disappear and giving you unsmelly underarms, it also takes care of the skin in the area. So, using charcoal as a deodorant will give your underarms some much-needed skincare.


Here are all the skincare benefits charcoal has to offer for your underarms. It smoothens your skin and calms down irritation. It also helps remove toxins and blackheads from your skin by unclogging your pores and aids with restoring your armpit complexion. So, with charcoal, not only will you be saying goodbye to smelly armpits, but you'll also be welcoming soft, healthy underarm skin.

Furthermore, if the highly acidic alternatives like lemon juice and baking soda are too much for your sensitive skin, charcoal is your best bet. You're sure to avoid flare-ups and irritations with the charcoal alternative.

The gentle but effective tea tree oil

This natural oil uses its antibacterial properties to kill off the odor-causing bacteria and delivers fresh-smelling pits all day long. This alternative will remove your bad smell, but not the sweat. You might think this is a downside to using tea tree oil, but this just means it will act as a deodorant and not as an antiperspirant. Antiperspirants aren't the heroes you think they are; they stop you from sweating by blocking your pores which is not at all a good thing.


But there's more to tea tree oil than masking your sweat smell. It also contains anti-inflammatory properties, which will help your skin heal and fight against skin irritations and inflammations.

Tea tree oil is also a mild alternative compared to other ingredients used in your standard deodorants. But you should know how to dilute it, and it is only gentle when it is diluted properly, so make sure you're doing a patch test before proper application. You can dilute tea tree oil with other oils — coconut oil is a good candidate.

Rubbing alcohol

This one is for everyone who constantly forgets to wear deodorant. If you leave the house without wearing your deodorant, reach into your bag, grab your hand sanitizer, and apply it on your armpit. Rubbing alcohol has the ability to kill bacteria, so it'll do just fine destroying the bacteria in your sweaty pits. But avoid applying rubbing alcohol after shaving your armpits because if there are cuts, they will sting. You have been warned.


Now, to answer the question: Do deodorant alternatives work? They do! You just have to have the patience to ride out the transitioning phase. Your pores have been blocked by the highly toxic chemicals used in your standard deodorants, so for your pores to get back to normal, it will take some time. But before they get back to normal, they will go through a very sweaty phase. So, be patient and don't lose hope; deodorant alternatives do actually work.