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This post was originally published in January 2019 and updated manyu times since. I have tried more natural deodorants and wanted to add my honest, unbiased reviews to this list. I have previously reviewed natural deodorants; this is an update on my experience transitioning to natural deodorant, what worked and what didn't. I am not an expert, and I have not been paid by any brand mentioned in this post.
Natural Deodorants Review
What is “Natural” Deodorant?
The term natural deodorant is misleading, and many different deodorants with very different ingredient lists use this term. While I don’t like this term, I choose to use it for this post as this is the term used to market these deodorants.
Natural deodorants, also called aluminum-free deodorants, are not antiperspirants. They do not stop sweat, they only stop odor. Using ingredients like arrowroot powder, baking soda, or cornstarch along with essential oils and moisturizers, natural deodorants strive to keep you feeling fresh while letting your body sweat naturally.
Natural deodorants got popular when there was a thought that the aluminum salts in antiperspirants were dangerous and possibly causing breast cancer and Alzheimer's. It has been proven time and time again that aluminum does not cause any health risks when added to an antiperspirant. For more information on how these myths about antiperspirants have been dispelled please visit:
- Antiperspirants and breast cancer risk (American Cancer Society)
- Is there a link between antiperspirants or deodorants and breast cancer? (NIH National Cancer Institute)
- Fact or Fiction?: Antiperspirants Do More Than Block Sweat. (Scientific American)
Many people choose a “natural” deodorant because they’re looking to keep their skin safe by reducing aluminum, parabens, or other chemicals. That was one of my reasons for seeking such a deodorant; another is because I wasn’t satisfied with traditional deodorant/antiperspirant products. After decades of using them, I didn’t find them as effective and didn’t like the weird smell I had. It was like a mix of body odor and fabric softener. Doing the research, it sounded as though a natural deodorant would help clear out plugged sweat glands, improving my body smells, and requiring less product.
My (very extensive) Natural Deodorants Review
I previously shared my experience with Native Deodorant and going through a deodorant detox. After that, I shared reviews of several natural deodorants. That was over a year ago, and since then I have had different results with products I previously reviewed and tried new products. I have been trying a variety of aluminum-free deodorants since 2017. Below, I share a timeline of my natural deodorant journey and the products I tried. And over time, as I have tried new products (or the same products with new formulations), I have updated this review.
May 2017: I Made the Switch to Natural Deodorant
Before it got too hot, I decided to try a natural deodorant. There is a detox period of 2-3 weeks when switching where your body is getting rid of the old deodorant that is in your sweat glands. This period is nasty, and you will smell like a mix of hot metal and B.O. It wasn’t fun, but I found showering twice a day, exfoliating my pits, and wiping my pits with alcohol helped greatly.
I used Native Deodorant, which got great reviews online and seemed to be advertised on every social media channel. At first, it was hard to tell whether it worked or not because of the detox period. Once my body stopped smelling horrible, the product seemed good. And then the next day, my armpits had a fiery rash. I learned this was common and a reaction to baking soda, an ingredient in Native Deodorant and many other natural deodorants.
At the end of May, I went to NYC to host an event with a brand and forgot my deodorant at home. They had E.O. Lavender Spray Deodorant in their office bathroom; that with some personal cleansing wipes got me smelling fresh after the train trip and worked reasonably well through the event that evening. At that event, I ended up in a conversation about natural deodorant with some attendees. One of the guests told me about Piperwai. She was an inventor and met the folks behind Piperwai Deodorant and thought they and their product were amazing. She inspired me to order a jar that very night.
June 2017: I Filled out my Amazon Cart
Armed with a fresh jar of Piperwai, I decided to do a truly natural deodorant review and ordered a dozen different types of Amazon and various websites. This is my original natural deodorant review. After that review, my three winners were Piperwai, Meow Meow Tweet, and E.O.
August 2017: Another Natural Deodorant Bites the Dust
It seemed like everywhere I went, I smelled cat pee and I don’t have a cat. I finally realized it was me every time I wore Piperwai. This stuff seemed so great, I was so disappointed. I decided to cut it out for two weeks to see if it was Piperwai or just natural deodorant in general.
In those two weeks, Piperwai contacted me and sent me a stick version of their deodorant. Once the two weeks were over, I used that. For the first week back on Piperwai, things were great. I smelled like nothing most days. But eventually, the cat pee smell came back. However, my husband continued to use Piperwai, and smell just dandy.
If there’s something I learned through this process is that everyone is different and what works for one may not another. And that what makes me smell like cat pee may make you smell like a rose.
September 2017: Bye Bye Meow Meow
Meow Meow Tweet had my heart. The name was cute, the label was cute, and the smell was awesome. Meow Meow Tweet is what I used when I took a Piperwai break and it was pretty effective. Not as effective as Piperwai, but enough that I felt comfortable in public.
But all good things must come to an end and by the end of September, Meow Meow Tweet had come to not accomplishing anything. Over time, it lost its effectiveness. I even bought another tub, thinking the first one may have lost its oomph after having my fingers dip in it so often. A new tub didn’t change the fact that I smelled like body odor coated in Froot Loops.
While I still had E.O. Lavender spray I learned early on that it wasn’t a replacement for a true deodorant. As a spray, it was great as a refresher mid-day but not as a sole product to keep the funk at bay. I still have this product and love it for travel, but it’s not an everyday product.
November 2017: Limping Back to Lavanilla
I tried Lavanilla Sport Luxe during my original review and found it… fine. I liked how nicely it glided on, and it didn’t give a rash. I still had the stick of it so I decided to use it up. The temps had dropped, and I figured I wouldn’t need as heavy-duty a deodorant.
And Lavanilla Sport Luxe worked okay enough. I usually had to do a touch-up mid-day but that wasn’t a big deal. However, after a few weeks again I started to smell like cat pee. My husband uses up the stick and thinks it works okay, though not as effective as Piperwai.
December 2017: Back to Traditional Deodorant/Antiperspirant
I started working out regularly and no natural deodorant in my house could keep up. I gave up and went back to Dove. Immediately, I smelled better. When I switched to natural deodorant I felt I was less sweaty and stinky. Well, switching back to traditional deodorant gave me the same experience. I forgot what it felt like to have non-sticky, dry pits and not have to wash my clothing after every wear. It was awesome, I couldn’t go back; I decided I would just try to be more natural in other aspects of my life.
I used Dove and only Dove for a month or two, and then I wasn’t satisfied. To boost it, I added Certain Dri, applying the roll-on every evening. That helped, but after a week Certain Dri started itching and burning a few minutes after application. I switched to only using Certain Dri the night before I had an event.
Once my stick of Dove ran out, I switched to Degree which seemed to work better. However, when that stick ran out I stood in the aisle at Target for a long while wondering what to do next because none of the scents appealed to me and I felt like nothing was doing what it claimed it would.
August 2018: Influenced by Influencers, I Try Kopari Deodorant
It seemed like every blogger suddenly got into natural deodorant and that natural deodorant was Kopari. Unlike many mass-influencer campaigns where it seems every account is promoting the same beauty product, that turned me off, this one turned me on. Kopari was working with influencers and content creators I respected, who were known for being more honest, more down to earth, and less likely to rave about just anything. And so I bought a stick.
I didn’t have to go through a detox with Kopari, I switched right to it and it seemed to work. Not only that, but it also smelled great. I love the smell of coconut, and this smells like coconut. And when your body heats up, it smells like warm coconut. The container is cute, it glides on easily, I was an instant fan.
And then three weeks later the stuff stopped working. Like overnight, it went from warm coconut to burnt coconut and body odor. I understand that with natural deodorants you need to switch them up every so often, but it seemed no deodorant lasted even a month. Sorry, but I have neither the time nor money to change my deodorant every few weeks.
Since this stuff stopped working but did work at one point I’ve stuck this into my toiletries kit in case I again forget to pack my regular deodorant for a trip. When my daughter started using deodorant, I gave her my tube and she liked it so much we re-ordered it when it ran out. My husband has also used Kopari since this review and likes it very much.
September 2018: A Mist of Cashmere… and Funerals
During all this research, people time and again raved about how much they loved Donna Karan’s Cashmere Mist deodorant. It was so effective! The smell is amazing! One stick lasts forever! Your skin will feel like silk! It survives hatha yoga and spartan races and 16-hour flights! It cures cancer! It's not natural, but considering how I don't even have success with traditional deodorant/antiperspirant products I decided to try it.
- Day 1: I smell fancy. No B.O. even after a grueling morning at the gym.
- Day 2: Wow, this stuff has an uber-strong scent. Maybe I’m just too used to regular deodorants, maybe I can make this my new signature scent instead of perfume. It works great.
- Day 3: This stuff is overwhelming and giving me a headache. Maybe I’m just overly sensitive to the scent because my period is coming. It works well.
- Day 4: I smell like decade-old potpourri. This is not chic. However, the stuff works well and I have nothing else in the house right now it was not cheap so I’ll keep using it for now.
- Day 5: I snuggle up next to my husband. “You smell weird,” he says. “Yeah, kind of like potpourri? It’s my new deodorant. Is it bad?” He says, “You smell like dust and mildew and dried flowers. You smell like a funeral.”
- Day 6: I go to CVS and buy a stick of Degree. My husband takes the Cashmere Mist, continues to use it, likes it, and doesn’t smell at all like a funeral.
December 2018: Facebook Ads Are Effective AKA I Try Lume Deodorant
That lady with the orange dress and bad accent got me. I saw Lume Deodorant ads all over Facebook, on Instagram, and even showing up on my site (my ads are through a network and affected by content on the site as well as content the viewer was searching or reading before visiting).
The commercial compared Lume to products I tried and found ineffective, it was free of baking soda so no rash, and I liked that it could be used in places other than the underarms. I bought a stick of their original and a stick of their unscented.
I started with the unscented option… and I didn’t like it. It smelled like paste and I didn’t find it effective. I started by rolling it on but then learned to click up a regular amount of traditional deodorant product and use my finger to wipe off half of it and rub it into one pit, and then the other half for the second pit.
Rubbing just with the stick doesn’t get it deep enough; using your finger will get you a couple more hours. Even so, I was lucky to get six hours before I smelled.
I then switched to their original version. Their original version is scented lavender and clary sage and the scent is pretty strong. I’m not a big Lavender fan, so I wasn’t expecting to like this. The scent is about 75% gone after an hour, and what’s left isn’t super potent. Again, I found it more effective to rub it in with my fingers. The formula is creamy, absorbs nicely, and leaves sensitive skin feeling soft and moisturized. No irritation, even when applied to freshly shaved pits.
I use the unscented version for other parts of the body. Lume Deodorant is safe for external use anywhere and the unscented does a good job of keeping feet and nether regions having less odor without making them smell like something else. If you're keeping track, my husband has not yet used Lume as he's still using the same stick of Cashmere Mist (reviews say one stick lasts forever and they're right).
January 2019: Lume Deodorant Is Still Working
I'm on week 5 of Lume Deodorant and it is still working. Unlike other natural deodorants, I haven’t had to touch up in the middle of the day. I do touch up before going out in the evening and apply after every shower. Lume claims to work for 72 hours and that is not so for me.
I can put it on in the morning after my post-gym shower, wake up the next day smelling faintly of lavender and clary sage, do another application and go to the gym and leave the gym still only smelling like lavender and clary sage. I don’t even get such results from Dove or Degree (which leaves me smelling like a hot fabric softener and toilet bowl cleaner).
Based on my previous natural deodorant experiences, I cannot guarantee that I will continue to like Lume. However, thus far it has been the most effective, one of the most comfortable to wear, and one of the least offensive fragrances of all the natural deodorants I have tried.
This is where the post previously ended. Since I didn't stop my quest to find an effective deodorant, I've updated the post with the products I have tried since.
April 2019: Not So Fresh Feeling
I loved Lume Deodorant enough that I finished my tube of their Original and went to the Unscented tube I stopped using and used some of it too, finding it more effective now. Maybe I fully detoxed? I ordered another two-pack. I finished almost one whole tube when Lume deodorant stopped working for me.
I went from smelling like lavender and sage to the person on the Metro at 7 pm who went to the gym in the morning and thought a toweling off was enough to get through the workday on a hot August Tuesday. ARGH!
How does something work well, and for so long, and stop working? Did Lume change its formulation? The tube says it's not as messy as before, but did that change alter its effectiveness?
May 2019: Feeling Fancy, I try Agent Nateur Deodorant
I'm in a beauty-related Facebook group and the topic of natural deodorants comes up. Several women share that their Holy Grail natural deodorant is Agent Nateur. Aluminum-free, cruelty-free, and a very simple ingredient list appealed to me along with the chic packaging. $21 can seem like a lot for a deodorant but if you tally up how much I had already spent on this natural deodorant quest, it no longer seems ridiculous.
I had a $50 Nordstrom gift card and decided to buy two – No.3 which was the one raved about in the Facebook group and No.5 which has a supposed unisex smell. I don't like florals and sweet smells so I thought I may prefer the unisex smell (and let's face it, if it doesn't work my husband will be using it).
I ended up liking both scents which dissipated and were far less overpowering than many other natural deodorants I've used. And they did pretty well. I did have to reapply mid-day, but if I caught it early enough I wasn't trying to mask B.O. but still preventing it. It felt great under the arms, in general, it was pretty darn good.
But after a month, I felt I needed to reapply more often and after six weeks I had maybe two hours max of just typing at my desk before I'd start getting stinky. Also after six weeks I had finished one $21 tube and was on to the second one. Not cost-effective or funk-effective.
I gave the second tube (the No.5) to my husband who fell absolutely in love with it and now is spoiled and expecting such luxury deodorant on the regular.
June 2019: Influencers Supporting Influencers, I Try Megababe Deodorant
Megababe is a beauty brand created by fellow blogger and influencer Katie Sturino. My readers love Katie, I love Katie. She's honest and funny and real and I love the concept of Megababe. Simple, effective, and non-toxic products for real-life issues.
My readers raved about Megababe Thigh Rescue and I agreed it was an amazing product for fighting chafing (AKA chub rub). They also raved about Megababe's deodorant Rosy Pits. If the deodorant was as effective as Thigh Rescue, I'd be thrilled. Sadly, it wasn't.
The Rosy Pits has a very strong rose smell, stronger than Schmidt's and any other rose deodorant I've tried. The smell was almost acidic on my skin, especially when heated up. The hot acidic rose smell made me nauseous but I continued to use it for science (and for this review). The first day seemed okay, but by day 2 I needed to reapply mid-day and by the end of the week not even that was enough to keep the stink away.
I gave Megababe to my husband but he refused to wear it because of the rose scent. I have yet to try Sunny Pits, the other scent of Megababe deodorant because I don't think I want my pits to smell like hot lemons and I assume it will be equal in effectiveness.
August 2019: Will Diet Affect My Body Odor?
In July, my husband decided to go 100% plant-based for his diet. As the primary cook in the family, he turned our home into a plant-based home. We were vegetarians for a few years but I started eating a bit when pregnant and my body was desperately craving Buffalo wings and the chik'n ones were not cutting it. Once I was breastfeeding, I found that I wasn't producing enough milk; the days I ate meat I produced more so I brought it back into my diet.
It had been a decade, and I was now weightlifting and eating a high-protein diet and wasn't thrilled. But I was willing to try it for a month and see how I did. I was also curious to see if changing my diet would improve my body odor.
I only eat meat, dairy, or eggs maybe twice a month now. I do think the diet change has affected my body odor. However, the change isn't a reduction in body odor but a different smell to it. I still get B.O. just as quickly with natural deodorants or going without, it just smells not so… heavy or pungent.
However, I still can't go with no deodorant or any of the deodorants I reviewed above, and do not smell like funk. So yes, a plant-based diet will change your body odor but it won't stop you from having body odor.
September 2019: Deodorizing from Within with Chlorophyll
Thanks again to a Facebook group, I read that liquid chlorophyll could help with removing body odor from the inside out. Members discussed how it stopped their foot odor, helped with bad breath from health-related issues, and yes, helped with body odor. Not only that, but they also shared how liquid chlorophyll gave them a boost of energy.
Doing research, I found that most people who claim chlorophyll will reduce body odor are using a 1960 study that has since been debunked. But then there was another study in the '80s that said consuming chlorophyll reduced body odor in nursing home patients.
I went through reviews on Amazon and WebMD and several said it radically changed their body odor and breath and I hardly saw a single negative review or reaction so I figured why not. I ordered a bottle of this liquid chlorophyll from Amazon. I don't know if this one is better or worse than others, at the time it just appealed to me.
It's late November and I continue to take one dropper-full of this liquid chlorophyll under my tongue every morning along with my daily vitamins and supplements. I am not sure if it's doing anything, or if it's just that it's November and cold out, or if it's just more months of eating plant-based.
Whatever the reason, I don't seem to smell quite as much. I am still using drugstore deodorant because I don't want to waste it, but I wonder if these two changes will make a natural deodorant work for me.
This is where my second update ended. But I wasn't finished with my journey to find an effective natural deodorant!
December 2019: Chlorophyll Didn't Work and I go back to Drugstore Deodorants
I think my finding the chlorophyll successful was just a chance or the possibility that I started it soon after going 80% plant-based with my diet. By the end of December and several holidays consuming a bit of meat, my body odor returned so I stopped taking the chlorophyll drops. I also gave up on natural deodorants and went back to Dove and Degree.
March 2020: Instagram Has Me try Apothekari
The natural skincare company Apothekari started following me on Instagram. It's a woman-owned small business based in Canada. The founder, Sharmani, reached out via DM in January and said she saw this post and wanted to see if I wanted to try her line of natural deodorants.
Considering how I pretty much rant about every natural deodorant out there in this post, I have props to her bravery and agreed to two bottles of the deodorant in exchange for a brutally honest review, whether that review is positive or negative. BTW, Apothekari is offering 10% off orders with promo code wardrobe10.
Apothekari deodorants are a roll-on style and come in three scents; they sent me the Grapefruit Ginger and Lavender Bergamot versions. I appreciate that the Apothekari website has the full ingredients and answers FAQs right on the product page. When they arrived, I began first with the Grapefruit Ginger as I love that combo of scents. I loved the roll-on, it was easy and clean.
My husband also used it and liked that it wasn't sticky and didn't get all clumpy in his armpit hair. This was the first deodorant that I found more effective than my husband's! After two weeks he stopped using it, saying he felt it burned a bit and he thought he smelled like “sweat and grapefruits.” I, however, found this product extremely effective.
If I was working from home and not exerting myself a lot, I could apply just once a day. I usually applied in the morning before going to the gym, again after my post-gym shower, and only another time if I was going out in the evening. I didn't smell like anything once it had dried – no grapefruit, no ginger, and no B.O.
However, after about six weeks I too experienced burning from applying the deodorant. It didn't matter if it was right after a shower or later in the day, whether or not I shaved, it burned as Certain-Dri did back when I used it.
I switched to the Lavender Bergamot. And I have been using it for about six weeks. No burning, and equally effective. However, the scent lingers longer. The Lavender Bergamot has the hippie/day spa scent that I don't mind but I know it's everyone's cup of tea. I have since used Neroli Rose and also love the scent and how effective it is. It has been a year and Apothekari is still working great for me!
Update: Apothekari is offering Wardrobe Oxygen, readers, 15% off their order (gift certificates excluded). Use wardrobe15 at checkout!
Summer 2020: A Goal for Less Waste with Ethique and by Humankind
While I continued to use Apothekari and find it effective (third bottle and still working better than any others), I wanted to see if I could find a deodorant that used less plastic so I could reduce my footprint. Reading online reviews and comments on this post, I first decided to try Ethique.
A New Zealand-based company, Ethique makes all sorts of body care products in a manner that is zero- to low-waste. Their solid deodorant comes in a compostable cardboard package.
Available in three scents, I chose Lavender & Vanilla. The product is a square that looks and feels a bit like a block of soap and Ethique recommends storing it in an airtight container when not in use.
I recently ordered a piece of jewelry that came in a round metal tin with a screw lid; it was the perfect size to house my Ethique deodorant bar.
Ethique did not work for me. Not even one day of success. I smelled like total funk within an hour of application, and all I had done was sit at my computer and type blog posts like this one.
My husband tried it and while he's famous for having success with every deodorant, this one he hated. He hated the scent, he hated that even if made him smell “not like B.O. but something else bad,” and he despised how it grabbed onto his underarm hair and was uncomfortable to apply.
However, my tween who is becoming more environmentally aware loved the idea, took the deodorant, and now uses it daily and smells better with it than anything else she has tried. While Ethique deodorant didn't work for me, I am still intrigued by the brand and may try some of their other products in the future when what I already have is used up.
I decided to then try deodorant from Humankind. Offering stylish containers and low-waste refills, Humankind looks to reduce your plastic footprint while still offering high-quality products. I have to say the pretty deodorant container appealed to me and I liked there were five scents to choose from. I went with the neon container and the Coconut-scented deodorant.
The product arrived quickly. The container is a great shape, it works easily to roll up the product, and the cap stays on well, this would be easy to travel with. The formula is a fantastic consistency, similar to “traditional” deodorants. And I liked it… for about two weeks. And then one night snuggling on the couch with my kid watching a movie she said, “I don't want to be rude but you kind of stink.”
For previous deodorants, I smelled the issue before others but maybe from being at home so much this year I'm not as aware since I'm not as exposed to non-my home and body smells.
On the other hand, no one likely is surprised to find my husband positively adores this deodorant and has decided it is by far the best one he has tried yet. It doesn't grab onto underarm hair, it works all day even when he spends it working in the garden or exercising. He's about ready for a refill and says he doesn't want to try any others. But my journey for natural deodorants isn't over which means his supply of my rejects isn't over!
Again Influenced by Influencers, I Try Kosasport Deodorant
I should know better, but I assume other influencers do the research and weeks of trial as I do. Maybe they do, and maybe they smell like roses and rainwater after a 60-minute Peloton ride no matter what they rub on their pits and that's why all the products they love I don't. And I do not love Kosasport, the deodorant from the clean beauty brand Kosas.
I liked the concept of Kosasport, using a blend of shikimic, mandelic, and lactic acids to fight body odor while also reducing underarm pigmentation. I have found wiping my pits with a bit of Pixi Glow Tonic, which is glycolic acid, helps my natural deodorants work better. I also liked that this deodorant was a roll-on, like Apothekari, which has been the most effective for me.
Whew, this stuff was terrible. The rollerball on a squeeze tube is a mess – either the ball is too dry to move or it drips product everywhere. I chose “Serene Clean” which is supposed to “smell like a spa.” I think it smells a bit like sour milk, which is not spa-like at all.
The product doesn't dry quickly and I had sticky pits even an hour after application. And an hour after application I had not just sticky pits, but sticky pits that smelled like fermented milk with top notes of B.O. I think this may be the worst natural deodorant I've tried and it sent me back to Apothekari.
Influenced by You… I Try Real Purity
I had multiple Wardrobe Oxygen readers tell me they had tried the roll-on deodorant from Real Purity, a cruelty-free skin and body care line made in the USA, and found it extremely effective. Learning that I can trust your reviews more than those of influencers, I bought a bottle of Real Purity roll-on natural deodorant.
And you're right, this stuff does work. It's a roll-on, the formula isn't too sticky or dry, and I can stay odor-free for several hours. However, I do not like the smell, which to me smells like citronella. And the citronella/bergamot/bug spray smell for me lasts all day. It doesn't bother me when I am outdoors slathered in bug spray and sunscreen and such, but when at home or out and about, it's not the fragrance I want to smell or be associated with.
My husband also thinks it smells like bug spray and doesn't want to use it. However, few reviews mention the smell so maybe it's just me? I find Apothekari to be a similar consistency and container with scents that are more to my taste.
Fall 2021: I Try Bite Deodorant
You may have heard of Bite toothpaste bits, a sustainable plastic-free alternative to traditional toothpaste. Well Bite, expanded from just offering toothpaste to deodorant, which is also with sustainable, plastic-free packaging and shipping. While I didn't like Bite toothpaste bits, I did like the concept and that it was a woman-founded company, and wanted to see how Bite natural deodorant fared.
Bite deodorant is completely plastic-free. You receive a reusable aluminum container and the deodorant refills are compostable paperboard. It's easy to slip the refill into the aluminum container and you press from the bottom to push up the deodorant like a push-pop. I got the Deo Trio, which had an aluminum container and three scents of deodorant – Neroli, Rose Vert, and Santal. I started with Neroli.
The first week I tried Bite Deodorant I was not a fan. I didn't think it could keep up with me and felt it was very similar to previous natural deodorants that seemed to have to be applied hourly to keep the funk at bay.
But over time, it seemed to work better and I seemed to master the process needed for success. If I showered in the morning, applied when my skin was dry, and did a second application mid-day, I'd be stink-free. I also liked the Neroli scent, which is sexy but subtle and didn't smell bad when I did over-exert myself and got a bit of B.O. mixed in.
I also really like the consistency. I have been using Apothekari exclusively for over a year because not only is it effective, but the roll-on formula didn't cake, crumble, or stain my clothes. I liked Apothekari so much that I was hesitant to try another stick version of natural deodorant. But Bite Deodorant rolls on nicely, doesn't crumble, isn't brittle, and one refill lasts about as long as a traditional stick of deodorant.
It has been six weeks of using Bite Deodorant and while I don't find it effective if I haven't showered that day or if I am doing a serious workout, I find it to be an effective everyday deodorant and a great choice if you don't like a roll-on (Apothekari continues to be one of the best natural deodorants for me).
Update: Sadly, Bite Deodorant went the route of previous natural deodorants, and a couple of weeks after this initial review I was finding even if it was a chill day working on my computer in a climate-controlled space, I was smelling funky at noon. That being said, my daughter liked it and used it until the scent she liked ran out.
And this is where my third update ended. I went for a while using traditional antiperspirant/deodorant combinations but as I have experienced before after a while I started smelling like hot metal which grossed me out. So I returned to the natural deodorant search.
Spring 2022: I Try Apothekari Spray Deodorant
Based on feedback and a desire to make an even more effective natural deodorant, Apothekari switches its deodorant design to a spray. The company in thanks for mentioning their deodorant in this post sent me the scents Tranquil Blossom, Morning Bliss, and Tuscan Blossom to try out.
I didn't expect to like the spray but it is far easier to use than a roll-on, and it's way easier to use on non-armpit places like the bottom of feet. The scents aren't subtle, but they do dissipate. I personally liked Tuscan Blossom the best, which has a scent that complements my favorite perfume oil. Apothekari also offers a “Barely There” version of the spray deodorant, which has hardly any fragrance and still has the same effectiveness.
Speaking of effectiveness, I find this to work just as well as the Apothekari roll-on. Free of zinc and aluminum, I will do two spritzes under each arm and stay stink-free all day. On hotter days, I do find I need to reapply mid-day. On high-activity days, this doesn't cut it for me but for the regular day-to-day, a year later this is one of my go-to effective natural deodorants.
Summer 2022: You All Influenced Me to Try Nuud
As someone with soft curves and over 40, gravity has affected my curves and I find working out and hot weather causes me to sweat and itch under my breasts and stomach. In a Facebook group, I am in, someone recommended Nuud not just as a natural deodorant but as a great product to prevent that itchy yeast issue I was dealing with. With a few of you recommending Nuud in the comments as a great natural deodorant and alternative to Lume, I decided to buy one of the small tubes to try it out for both purposes.
Nuud as a deodorant for me is… eh. It doesn't work any better than any other natural deodorant I have tried. I found I had to reapply, and after a few weeks, it no longer seemed as effective. I also didn't love the cream in a tube application and it was pasty under my arms, hard to spread.
However, Nuud deodorant is fantastic for dealing with the itch one may experience on parts of the body where sweat and heat can get trapped. Under the breasts, the stomach, the crotch, and yes, even the underarms. A little goes a long way, one of those tiny tubes may get you through an entire summer season. I have repurchased Nuud more than once but don't use it as a deodorant.
Winter 2022: Influenced by my Family, I Return to Native
My daughter is now at an age where like the rest of us, she's being influenced by social media. And she saw plenty of ads and influencers rave about Native deodorants and the exclusive scents only available at Target. My husband and daughter went on a Target run and both came back with different scents of Native deodorant. And both of them became instant fans.
When my Apothekari bottle ran out, I borrowed my husband's Native Bergamot & Pine deodorant, expecting the same instant underarm rash from baking soda I experienced in 2017 but would deal with it to not be stinky at an event. I was thrilled to find not only was I not stinky but not rashy. I grabbed an extra one in the pantry that I bought during a Target deal and began using it regularly.
I am thrilled to say that Native never caused a rash, and while I do need to reapply during the day if I'm not just working from home or lounging on the couch, I have not gotten the stinky man in the woods or cat pee smell I have found with other natural deodorants. My current favorite is Jasmine & Cedar and I like how the scent dissipates but doesn't completely disappear.
Summer 2023: I Try Lume Deodorant Again
If you're on social media, you've been hit with ads for Lume. TikTok, Instagram, Pinterest, and Facebook are all coated with the founder as well as influencers raving about the new and improved Lume. Considering I had a great, then terrible experience with Lume, I decided to try again and see if it has improved with time and company growth.
You can now buy Lume deodorant in a range of places and I chose Amazon, knowing if I hated it I could just take it to my local Whole Foods and return it. Lume is available in a stick, in a tube, and in a range of different scents as well as unscented. Not liking Lume's original unscented scent and knowing from personal experience I don't enjoy my pits smelling like warm lavender, toasted coconut, heated roses, or pine trees and I have never been a baby powder kind of person, I chose Clean Tangerine.
I may be dating myself, but folks my age and older likely know the chalky fake tastes of children's medicine. They were grape, or like baby aspirin, they were orange. And when you catch a whiff you're transported to an uncomfortable part of childhood where you're sick and being forced to consume this sicky sweet grossness. Well, Lume's Clean Tangerine smells like liquified baby aspirin. And the scent dissipates right around the time the effectiveness wears off.
I wore it to an outdoor lunch with friends. I drove there in an air-conditioned car, we sat for a couple of hours under an umbrella on a breezy day in the high 70s/low 80s, I was wearing a T-shirt dress and sandals. When I hugged my friend she asked if I was wearing new perfume (I wasn't). She said I smelled citrusy. That was the Lume, not the fragrance. I can't recall any other deodorant that an hour after application folks mentioned the scent.
During the lunch, I didn't have alcohol, and I didn't get sweaty, but by the end of the lunch I took a whiff of my pits and I smelled as though I hadn't showered in the past couple of days. Yup, that same week I headed to Whole Foods to return my tube of baby aspirin… I mean Lume deodorant. And I went back to Native.
I find I usually use Native but still use Apothekari. If I will be out for the day, I'll pop my Apothekari spray in my bag because it's so easy to reapply and the bottle is small and secure. But I am concerned with the hotter and more humid days coming if these deodorants will hold up.
Which Natural Deodorant Should I Try Next?
So for now I have a winner, but I am always interested in seeing what else is out there, especially with my natural deodorant track record. My husband and daughter continue to be perfectly happy with their natural deodorants, smelling fresh and feeling good.
I haven't given up and would love to hear from you. Based on my experiences, do you think there is another natural deodorant that will work for me? Have you had any success? Do share in the comments!