So you’ve decided to make the switch to natural deodorant. It’s better for your skin and your health, so it should be a no-brainer, right? Easy-peasy... just pick a deodorant and you’re good to go. But this is not always the case. In fact, many people start experiencing problems shortly after switching to natural deodorant. Underarm rash and irritation is one of the biggest problems people report upon switching, and there are a few reasons why this can happen.
Why is my natural deodorant giving me a rash?
Reason #1: Perspiration. If you’ve been using commercial deodorant for years, it may take a while for your pits to adjust to a new routine, including sweating. As we outlined in our article about Natural Deodorant Detox, the lack of antiperspirant ingredients in your new deo will finally allow you to sweat, and may cause your pits to go into a detox phase.
The buildup of toxins are finally able to be released from your sweat glands, and this can initially cause an unpleasant reaction. This phase can last anywhere from a few days to weeks, depending on your habits. We have some ways to help with the process, as outlined below.
Reason #2: There’s baking soda (AKA sodium bicarbonate) in your natural deodorant. Say what?! But that’s the magical ingredient! There’s baking soda in like 99% of natural deodorants! Every DIY deodorant recipe contains this stuff! Don’t worry, there are other options. Way better options.
Our natural deodorant cream is baking soda free, and for a good reason. While baking soda can be effective for reducing odor, it’s not a good choice for your sensitive underarm area. Simply put, baking soda throws off your skin’s delicate pH balance. On a scale of 0-14, our skin’s pH level is between 4.5-6.5- it’s slightly acidic. Baking soda is highly alkaline- at a pH of 9. So, when you apply it to your skin, it totally messes with your skin’s healthy acid mantle, much like over-excessive hand washing. This will result in dry, itchy, red, bumpy, super painful rash in your underarms. I don’t know about you, but I would like to avoid that scenario at all costs. Trust us when we say just skip the baking soda.
How do you get rid of natural deodorant rash?
So maybe you read this article a bit too late. You’ve already made the switch to a natural deodorant with baking soda in it, and now you have a rash. Fret not! Follow the steps below and get on your way to healthy, happy pits.
- Discontinue using your current deodorant. (No-brainer, right?)
- Get into a good cleaning regimen. Wash those pits daily, especially after exercising. If you’re using a commercial body wash with synthetic fragrance and ingredients, switching to a more gentle, 100% natural soap may help. The less potential irritants you put on your skin, the better. We make a great bar of soap that’s available in several different scents.
- Switch up your shaving routine. Try shaving at night, and applying your deodorant in the morning. If you’re a daily shaver, shaving every other day while your skin is healing is also a good idea. When your skin is already in a compromised state, anything that has potential to irritate it can and will.
- Do a detox. All you need is some bentonite clay and ACV (apple cider vinegar).
1 tsp ACV
1 tbsp bentonite clay
1-2 tsp water
Instructions: Mix in a bowl and apply to clean underarms. Leave on for 5-10 minutes. Note that some may experience a bit more tingling/redness than others, as this does increase blood flow to the area. Rinse & pat dry. Repeat daily, or as often as necessary until rash has subsided and application of new deodorant no longer irritates.
What is the best natural deodorant for sensitive skin?
For starters, choose a deodorant that replaces baking soda with other active odor-absorbing ingredients. The star ingredients in our natural deodorant cream is magnesium hydroxide. This naturally occurring odor and oil absorber is a safe alternative to baking soda, aluminum, and other irritating, ineffective, and potentially toxic ingredients. Combined with other sweat-absorbing, odor-inhibiting, and nourishing ingredients, our deodorant cream is long-lasting, non-irritating, and most importantly, effective.