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I've tried to find a deodorant that I absolutely love the aroma of AND can trust that it will work for me. I've tried so many brands and I began to feel a little let down by the world of natural products.
I know the benefits to only using natural deodorants over anti-perspirants and commercially made over the counter deodorants are immense, so I was determined to keep up the search.
If you're not familiar with the issues surrounding commercial deodorants, let me break it down for you:
1) Parabens and chemicals in many off-the-shelf deodorants are easily absorbed into the blood stream and fat cells when applied directly to the skin. When you apply these chemicals and parabens under the arms they come into direct contact with hormone receptors which can have a negative impact on our reproductive systems.
2) Know the difference between a deodorant and an anti-perspirant. There is a massive difference between these two products. Anti-perspirants stop us from perspiring in the first place by blocking the ducts of our armpits and stopping the sweat which is one of the ways our bodies get rid of toxins. Preventing this from occurring can cause a build-up of these toxins. Deodorants allow us to sweat naturally but combat the yucky odour which is created when sweat hits the skin and mixes with natural bacteria.
3) There are many amazing natural deodorants out there, some though include aluminium as an ingredient. Aluminium is a massive issue as research has found that aluminium can actually promote the development of tumorous and cancerous cells. Given that the underarm tissue and glands are linked to the breasts and milk ducts - the ride of concern over aluminium deodorants and breast cancer is one I'm more than happy to avoid.
Natural deos that contain ingredients like witch-hazel and bi carb are the ones you want to look out for. Witch Hazel and Bi Carb (especially together) act as an anti-microbial so that odour-making bacteria on the skin is essentially neutralized.
A look at some of the other ingredients in this particular recipe:
Aloe Powder - you don't need a lot to create skin hydration and a soothing effect. When we sweat to cool down, Aloe’s cooling effect helps to speed up the process by helping to reduce skin temperatures. Higher heat also equals more of a breeding ground for that odour making bacteria.
Guar Gum- this is a thickening agent so the deodorant does just slop everywhere. Nasty thickening agents can come from all sorts of chemical concoctions. Guar gum comes from plants, specifically the bean from the Guar plant.
Zinc Oxide - surprisingly Zinc is an active anti-microbial! And is super effective at killing off those odour creating bacterium
We used Mojave blend in this recipe for its beautifully balanced uplifting citrus and calming chamomile - the perfect option for a neutral armpit.
We recommend no more than 1% of essential oil in your deodorant. We used 0.5% and it was plenty!.
In our Sports deodorant blend we used: Eucalyptus Dives, Rosalina, Lemon, Wintergreen, Patchouli, Lime, Orange and Peppermint. But we strongly encourage you to customise your deodorant to what YOU like.
Other things you can add to make it your own: Swap portions of your Glycerine for Extracts, portions of your distilled water for floral waters, add a touch of vitamin e!
We hope you have fun trying out this recipe and if you want to check out a comparison or perhaps you just don't want to bother with the making we've got a small batch of each our Mojave and Sports versions available to buy online.
705ml Water (Distilled) - After boiling you'll end up with about 650ml
0.5 grams Aloe Vera Powder
8 grams Guar Gum
40 grams Bi Carb Soda
215 grams Witch Hazel
50 grams Glycerine
5 grams Geoguard Ultra - Natural broad-spectrum preservative (important if you're making a lot or want to sell them). You could also use Euxcyl PE9010 or Naticide - all available from many soap companies - we'll have this soon.
8 grams Zinc Oxide - coming soon!
5 grams Essential Oil Blend - We used Mojave
Boil your water over heat heat (stove top/cooker) for approx 5 minutes for 1L batches - if making in larger batches boil for 10-15 minutes to purify and then take off the heat.
Using a hand mixer or bar mixer blend in your Aloe Powder until thoroughly absorbed.
Slowly add the Guar Gum whilst continuing to mix. You'll notice the liquid begins to thicken.
Let cool to around 60 degrees and then beat in the Sodium Bicarbonate - you will notice that it will start to bubble - this is normal and is just the bi carb reacting to the heat and other ingredients
Add your Witch Hazel Extract and Glycerine - mix mix mix
Once cooled to below 40 degrees, add in your essential oil blend and zinc oxide - mix on low - don't over mix at this point - a gentle fold in is even better.
Mix in the Zinc Oxide - you'll see it become lighter in colour here.
To hydrate Geogaurd - add to approx 100ml of water and stir until dissolved. Mix in your preservative into the deodorant mixture.
Leave to settle for approx 24 hours - this will allow the bi-carb bubbles to dissipate.
Bottle off into old roll on bottles - don't forget to clean and sterilise before using second hand bottles. If you have a classic bottle with a roller ball, a handy tip to pulling out the ball to clean and refill is to get some fine string and use the roller ball to push the strong underneath by rolling it to the direction of the strong. Do this with two pieces of strong and then holding the string leverage the tension to pop out the ball. You can also try a spoon if your ball has enough surrounding give.