Using your own blend of natural ingredients is healthier and less expensive than using store-bought deodorants, and still helps to gently refresh your skin and prevent odours. Here’s how to make your own.
Underarm perspiration is caused by secretions from the apocrine and the eccrine sweat glands. The amount you perspire is largely based on the body’s efforts to regulate temperature. The hotter the temperature, the more you sweat. This is how the body cools itself.
- Essential oils are an important element of many deodorant formulas. The essential oils of citrus plants, such as lemon, bergamot, lemongrass, lime, neroli and grapefruit, are pleasantly cooling.
- Rose or lavender oils, on the other hand, lend a delicate, feminine aroma to deodorant, while sage and cypress oil have an astringent and contracting effect that helps reduce sweating. They can keep you smelling great all day.
- To make a basic, but fragrant, deodorant, mix about 45 millilitres (three tablespoons) of vodka and 45 millilitres (three tablespoons) of either witch hazel, cornflower, or rose water.
- Add to the mix 40 drops of essential oil. For best results, steep the deodorants for about a week before using.
- To make a very simple deodorant, mix two to three drops of essential oil, such as rose or lavender oil, with a little water and dab it on your underarms.
- Another option is to use deodorant stones or crystals, which are made from crystallized natural mineral salts that kill odour-causing bacteria. Deodorant stones are inexpensive, but may clog your pores if applied too liberally.
- To make a homemade deodorant bursting with a fresh summer scent, mix 45 millilitres (three tablespoons) each of dried sage and dried lavender, the juice and grated rind from half a lemon, and three drops each of lemon and neroli oil in a sealable container. Pour in 250 millilitres (one cup) of witch hazel and steep for a week. Strain, and add 30 millilitres (two tablespoons) of cider vinegar.
- Cider vinegar by itself is also useful to counter excessive sweat. Sprinkle cider vinegar onto a cotton cloth and rub your underarms with it. Another easy method to nip sweat production in the bud is to drink sage tea regularly.
Good to know
Apply deodorants to clean skin in order to prevent odour-producing bacteria from multiplying too quickly. Keep odours at bay by shaving your underarm hair, but wait a day before applying deodorant to avoid skin irritation. Using too much deodorant can leave you with clogged sweat glands and may cause inflammation.