If you visit us for holistic skincare you know that the stuff we use has always been free of Parabens and synthetic chemicals and fragrances. What about those products you don’t become acquainted with in the course of a skincare, massage, or coaching session? For instance, what about your deodorant? Lately there has been a lot of well-deserved terrible press about just how bad some of the over-the-counter products really are. So lately a lot of my clients have been asking for my recommendations of natural products that don’t contain toxic chemicals but that actually work. You see, many well-liked faux-natural lines (such as that airport favorite that looks like a twee apothecary and whose name rhymes with “Bhiel’s”) have gross ingredients like aluminum and artificial fragrance. And your usual health food store deodorant may not have parabens or aluminum in it, but it also leaves many lovely ladies and gentlemen feeling. . . not so fresh.
The one I make and sell in our office is a fab-smelling, sweat-stopping, Earth-saving deodorant/antiperspirant with shea butter, French cosmetic clay, and a host of ridiculously good-smelling essential oils. A steal at $15.95, it’s redolent of an enchanted valley and makes you feel like raising your hand all day long, even when you don’t know the answer.
But it’s dead easy to make a perfectly serviceable product yourself with stuff you probably already have on hand. So, BEHOLD- my recipe for a super-easy deodorant:
A SAUCE PAN
A MIXING BOWL
SOMETHING TO STIR WITH (I like cocktail swizzles, but use what you’ve got.)
ESSENTIAL OILS in a scent you like (something like this would give you a fresh scent with great antibacterial action)
1. Melt some coconut oil in a double-broiler
2. Pour it into a jar and add enough baking soda to make a paste
3. Add a couple drops of essential oils if you like
4. The end.
Oh, you thought cosmetic formulation should be a touch more complex? Okay- here are longer directions for you, but really you are just fine doing the above. This isn’t rocket surgery.
To Make, Complicated:
1. Make a double broiler (or bain marie, if you’re feeling French and/or fancy) by putting your mixing bowl atop a sauce pan that you have filled halfway with some water.
2. Bring the water to a boil and as you do so, scoop out some coconut oil into the bowl. Eyeball it- you’re talking maybe five tablespoons, depending on the size of your jar.
3. Heat the coconut oil until it is just liquified. (Coconut oil is solid at room temperature. If it’s a hot day and you happen to be starting with liquified coconut oil then you may skip this whole melting step.)
4. Pour liquified coconut oil into your jar and add approximately 1/2 cup of baking soda to the jar. Mix well.
5. Add 5-10 drops of essential oils of your choosing if you are inclined.
Optional, 6: If you are a sensitive sort or if you have just had hair removal, the baking soda may sting a bit. If this is you, try substituting part cornstarch for part of your baking soda.
Et voila, you’re done and you smell damn fine.
Kirsten Quint Fairbanks is health coach and holistic lifestyle expert who lives happily, works gratefully, home-schools secularly, dances inexpertly, cooks traditionally, and nurses on demand in the San Francisco Bay Area. She offers real-world healthy lifestyle coaching for busy women who want vibrant health, beautiful babies, thriving families, and more fun in their lives. She also offers holistic skincare consultation for anyone who is tired of the beauty hype and is ready to have healthy, glowing skin. She works online and in-person. Read more about her here.