16 Zero Waste Deodorants For Sustainable Pits

16 Zero Waste Deodorants For Sustainable Pits

This might sound weird but I am super into zero waste deodorants. I have always been very aware of sweating and I couldn’t believe it when I smelt and sweat less using a natural deodorant! I have had a few ups and downs from armpit rashes to total fails but I am so pleased to share my knowledge with you today so you don’t have to go through this! 

Natural deodorant has definitely been one of my all time favorite swaps as it has allowed me to make choices that are better for both my health and the planet. Read on for some of my best recommendations and the answers to some of the most common questions about zero waste deodorants. 

FYI, this is a guest post written by Little By Lottie, a zero waste advocate and blogger. This post contains affiliate links. This means if you choose to purchase one of these items I will make a very small commission at no extra charge to you. Please see my disclosure policy for more information.

16 Zero Waste Deodorants For Sustainable Pits

16 Zero Waste Deodorants For Sustainable Pits

What is zero waste deodorant?

Zero waste deodorant is typically plastic-free, or refillable, and made with natural ingredients that don’t harm our bodies or the planet. When we think “zero waste deodorant”, we should be picturing some kind of closed loop system where the packaging doesn’t contribute to more plastic pollution. That could be in part because it’s refillable, easy to recycle or reuse, or its compostable.

Why Plastic Free Deodorants?

Well… this is a big question! There are so many reasons related to the environment as well as our health, which I will cover in more detail later in the post. The primary reason though is, as zero wasters, we aim to produce as little waste in our lives as possible (hence the name) and given deodorant is something most of us use on a daily basis, it is a natural swap to make. It is estimated that $18 million are spent on conventional deodorant every single year. Imagine if that amount of money was spent on natural, plastic free deodorants instead, that would be $18 million of product packaging being prevented from being sent to landfill.

Landfill…? But you thought you could recycle deodorant cans. Well in theory, yes you can, however, there is a huge fundamental flaw in the recycling system in the USA meaning as much as 91% of products sent to be recycled are actually thrown into landfill. On top of that, many Americans don’t have the option of curb side recycling for their deodorant canisters, so it is a much better idea to opt for a plastic free option.

Which deodorant is the most environmentally friendly?

The deodorant that’s most environmentally friendly is the one you already have. Use up what you have before getting something new. Discarding it would just create more waste.

That being said, when you’re ready for a new swap, the most environmentally friendly deodorant is one on this list! All of these deodorants are mindfully packaged, made with sustainable/natural ingredients, and are aluminum free.

Also, with zero waste deodorants, due to the fact they work differently than your classic anti-perspirants, the products will tend to last longer and potentially save you money!

Do eco-friendly deodorants work?

Yes eco-friendly deodorants work. However, they work in a different way to conventional deodorants. Eco-friendly deodorants tend to work by neutralizing odor and absorbing moisture instead of blocking up your pores and preventing sweating in the first place.

The bonus of this is that, as you are not messing with the natural processes of your body, you are far less likely to become resistant to a certain product. The only thing I would say is that if you have been used to conventional deodorants, your body may go through a transition period, while it is unclogging your sweat glands.

Not everyone has this experience, I didn’t, but some do so it might be worth while timing the transition to a zero waste deodorant when you are likely to be at home. Most people find, this only lasts a few days.

My personal experience is that eco-friendly deodorants are actually a lot more effective for me than drugstore deodorants ever were.

How do you use zero waste deodorant?

This depends on what kind of deodorant you get. If your zero waste deodorant comes in a jar or tin, put a little bit on your finger and smear it under your armpits. In a tube? Just roll it on like you would any typical deodorant.

Are deodorants safe for the environment?

On the whole no. There are tonnes of factors that come into play here from air pollution to packaging. The most obvious one is that for spray deodorants, aerosols are notoriously difficult to recycle so unfortunately the vast majority of deodorant cans end up in the landfill. Many deodorants also contain triclosan, which is one of the key ingredients many antiperspirants use to kill bacteria and prevent odor. However, while triclosan is effective at what it does, it is harmful to aquatic life. Finally, deodorants have been known to be harmful to the environment by polluting the air. 

Why is deodorant bad for you?

Unfortunately, conventional deodorants contain lots of harmful ingredients but the main one is aluminium. There has been a lot of research into the effects of this and there are mixed results. But there is potential evidence to suggest connections between aluminium and diseases such as cancer and dementia. It is important to note that these associations are not conclusive. 

Another thing to think about it the way these deodorants work. The ingredients in conventional deodorants actually block up your pores to try to stop sweat, however, in some cases this can actually cause your body to sweat more, as you try to clear your pores. If you have ever found yourself becoming resistant to certain deodorants this is why.

While this is definitely not conclusive, many people, such as myself, opt for more natural options. 

Zero waste deodorant with or without baking soda?

This is totally personal preference. Many people find that baking soda is an incredibly effective ingredient in their deodorants, however, some people find that this ingredient actually irritates their skin. I have experienced this personally. There are some really simple homemade recipes out there using baking soda but for those with sensitive skin like me, there are much fewer. I personally love to make my own products and I actually really like this one written by Ariana.

What should I look for in a zero waste deodorant?

As always, this will totally depend on your personal priorities. I, however, have several criteria that must be fulfilled. In terms of packaging, it must be compostable, this is so I don’t leave any trace of the product after I have used it. In addition to this, I have sensitive skin, so I like to make sure that there is no baking soda in any deodorants I use and they also must contain no aluminium. Finally, I like to make sure that the product contains only natural ingredients and that all ingredients are vegan, as I like to make sure that the product is not causing harm to me or the environment. 

16 Zero Waste Deodorants For Sustainable Pits

1. Myro

  • Refill Scheme
  • Baking Soda Free
  • Not Plastic Free
  • Wide range of scents available
  • Love it or send it back policy

So you know how there is this impression of zero waste living where you have to have everything in neutral colors? Well this brand totally blows that idea out of the water! Myro run a refill scheme where you buy a case, and once the and then only purchase refill pods made of number 2 plastic which is 100% recyclable and uses around half the amount of plastic required for a conventional deodorant. If your goal is to be 100% plastic free then I don’t suggest this is a good option for you, but if you are trying to simply reduce the amount of waste you produce then 100% give this a go.

If you are new to the world of zero waste deodorants,  this is a really good place to start as the company has a policy where you will get your money back if you aren’t completely satisfied with the product.

16 Zero Waste Deodorants For Sustainable Pits

2. Meow Meow Tweet

  • Stick and Cream Options Available
  • Vegan Friendly
  • Baking Soda Free Options
  • Leaping Bunny Certified
  • LGBTQ+ owned

Meow Meow Tweet are an awesome company who are super focused on creating circular systems and aim to completely eliminate waste within their products. They have developed a deodorant in a compostable tube and also have a closed loop bulk program. There is also the added bonus that the packaging is super cute. Something I love about this brand is there are various options available depending on what sort of products suit you best. For instance, if you can choose between a stick deodorant or a cream deodorant, scented or scentless and with or without baking powder. They really are inclusive and are definitely worth a look. Oh, did I mention the packaging is super cute (I know I did but seriously it’s something else)!!

16 Zero Waste Deodorants For Sustainable Pits

3. Fat and The Moon

  • Deodorant Cream
  • Miniature size available
  • Contains baking soda
  • Contact for Sensitive Skin Formulation
  • Made to Order

Fat and the Moon have developed an awesome aluminium free deodorant with a baking soda base. This product has been developed for the “full spectrum of stinky” meaning no mater how much your body sweats, this should work for you. An added bonus is that they have also made sure that there is no horrible white streaks left on your clothing – we have all been there. Although this product does contain baking powder, due to the fact that every product is made to order, if you do have sensitive skin, you can simply contact the company and they will create you a special sensitive skin option! Who doesn’t love that feeling of something being made especially for you!!

16 Zero Waste Deodorants For Sustainable Pits

4. Bai-li

  • Compostable Deodorant Stick
  • Vegan & Cruelty Free
  • Baking Soda Free
  • Certified Organic
  • Various Scents Available

Bai-li have developed a zero waste deodorant that is kind to both your skin and the planet. If you are like me and tend to react to baking soda based products, I highly recommend you give this one a go. It comes in a compostable tube and there are four different scents to choose from, including an unscented one! Personally, I love the Lavender and Peppermint but that’s just me. The company hand make every single product as they are aware of the effects of over producing products which means there is also no need for any preservatives!

16 Zero Waste Deodorants For Sustainable Pits

5. Routine

  • Cream or Stick Deodorant 
  • Aluminium Free
  • Clean Ingredients – See their dirty list
  • Baking Soda Free Options  
  • Uses compostable cardboard and 100% recycled plastic 

Credo Beauty made headlines in June 2020 for completing their two year phase out of single use plastics, and for that I have the utmost respect. As a brand they are challenging other to make the same choices and have a wonderful range of clean beauty products including zero waste deodorant. Their products come in two forms, a cream deodorant and a stick deodorant, both with beautiful high end-feel packaging. 

16 Zero Waste Deodorants For Sustainable Pits

6. Tom’s of Maine

  • Deodorant Sticks
  • Plastic Free Options Available
  • Aluminium free
  • Transparent About Ingredients 
  • Cruelty Free 

Toms of Maine is one of those brands that are a lot more widely available and can even be found in Target. The only downside I would say of this company is that they are owned by Colgate, so if you are opposed to them as a company then this isn’t the option for you. Having said this, Toms of Maine are a B corp certified company, so personally, I am happy to trust their products. I actually love that there is a mainstream brand which has taken it upon themselves to make natural and ethical products so widely available. 

16 Zero Waste Deodorants For Sustainable Pits

7. Tierra and Lava

  • Deodorant sticks
  • Dermatologically tested 
  • Contains Beeswax 
  • Female Owned Business 
  • Certified Fair Trade

This brand has really built their foundations on their love of the earth. They have an amazing zero waste focus and even use any single use plastics that come into the company are made into EcoBricks. Tierra and Lava’s zero waste deodorant comes with “ARMPIT DETOX” to help with the dreaded transition period after switching to a natural deodorant. I love that they have acknowledged this and is a great option if you’re worried about this. 

16 Zero Waste Deodorants For Sustainable Pits

8. Captain Blankenship

  • Deodorant Cream
  • Contains Baking Soda 
  • Not Plastic Free
  • 1% For the Planet 
  • B Corps Certified 

Captain Blankenship have a really lovely and simple cream zero waste deodorant in a beautiful Lime & Vetiver scent. Made from 100% organic ingredients, if you have sensitive skin or are very focused on making sure products you use are completely plastic free, this one is probably not for you. But this is definitely a great option to try, especially if you prefer a product you apply with your hands or a brush. 

16 Zero Waste Deodorants For Sustainable Pits

9. Plum Brilliance

  • Deodorant Cream 
  • Contains Baking Soda 
  • Aluminium Free 
  • Vegan Friendly 
  • Plastic Free Packaging

This is a really cool USA based company, made from sustainably sourced ingredients and the product is packaged in completely plastic free packaging. The glass jar container is beautifully simple and contains cream deodorant in various different scents. If you are local to San Diego, you can even save yourself the postage and pick the products up for yourself from Valley Centre. All of the products focus on encouraging the consumer to reconnect with nature and sourcing products in a clean and natural way. 

16 Zero Waste Deodorants For Sustainable Pits

10. Chagrin Valley

  • Deodorant Stick, Clay or Cream Options
  • Multiple Scent Options
  • Family Owned Business 
  • USDA Organic 
  • Some contain Baking Soda

Chagrin Valley are a family owned, US based business who are committed to using only USDA Organic products in all of their products. Their zero waste deodorant has some incredible options and this is the perfect place to start for natural deodorant beginners, with 3 different types available; deodorant stick, clay or cream. On top of this, there are some wonderful different scents to try. And an added bonus, all the ingredients are totally cruelty free!

16 Zero Waste Deodorants For Sustainable Pits

11. Wild

  • Refillable Inserts & a Case for Life
  • New Scents Released Regularly 
  • Compostable refills
  • Contains Baking Soda
  • Vegan Friendly

Okay so Wild has a LOT of hype around it and honestly I totally get why!! If you want some really beautiful scents, this really is the deodorant for you. This is the deodorant I reorder time and time again, and can’t leave the house without one in my bag. If you have sensitive skin, like I do, they also have sensitive options. Wild really do step out of the box when it comes to their cases, they are beautiful bright colors and combat the idea of natural=neutral. I love them! 

16 Zero Waste Deodorants For Sustainable Pits

12. Schmidts

  • Deodorant Sticks 
  • Available Worldwide
  • Leaping Bunny Certified 
  • 24 hour Protection Guarenteed 
  • Unisex Scents 

Schmidts make an award winning unisex deodorant which is avaliable all around the world. There are tonnes of scent options and all of the ingredients are vegan, natural and cruelty free. If you are looking for a totally plastic free option, this one probably isn’t for you but if you are more focused on the ingredients, you should totally give this a go! An added bonus, for those with sensitive skin, they have baking soda free options too! 

16 Zero Waste Deodorants For Sustainable Pits

13. Native

  • Deodorant Stick
  • Plastic Free Options Avaliable 
  • Sensitive Skin Options 
  • Contains Baking Soda 
  • Vegan & Cruelty Free 

This is another of those deodorants that is RAVED ABOUT! And it’s totally worth the hype. It was well known as a natural deodorant option and has more recently released a plastic free option too! All of their deodorants are aluminium free, cruelty free and suitable for vegans. This really is one of the best zero waste deodorant options on the market and the company are truly committed to helping give people better options when it comes to deodorant. 

16 Zero Waste Deodorants For Sustainable Pits

14. Humankind

  • Refillable Deodorant Stick or 
  • Carbon Neutral Company 
  • Single Use Plastic Free
  • Vegan Friendly
  • Subscription Service 

I love a bit of color and Humankind does too! Whether you are more into the classic black look but also they have a neon green case if that’s more up your street! Humankind are keen of backing all of their decisions with science which means there is a clear justification for every ingredient in their formulations. In addition to this, they have a strict list of ingredients that they will never include. The best part is, they really have the environment at the heart of everything they do and have been carbon neutral since 2019.

16 Zero Waste Deodorants For Sustainable Pits

15. Ethique

  • Deodorant Bar
  • Long Lasting
  • Baking Soda Free
  • Avaliable Worldwide
  • Partners with environmental organizations

Ethique is probably most well known for their shampoo bars but did you know they also do some really amazing zero waste deodorants too? Unlike others on this list, this is a deodorant bar, and I have to say, I really love them! They last an incredibly long time but I advise that you keep it in a container to stop it drying out. They have some lovely scents are are suitable for people with sensitive skin like me! 

16 Zero Waste Deodorants For Sustainable Pits

16. No Pong

  • Deodorant Cream 
  • Certified Cruelty Free
  • Plastic and Palm Oil Fre
  • Made in Australia 
  • Sensitive Skin Options

Can we just take a second to appreciate how great the name of this product is! No Pong are an Australian based company who are committed to making a difference to the environment. It is one of the most loved zero waste deodorants and has been specifically formulated to make sure there are no nasty stains left on your clothes. 

16 Zero Waste Deodorants For Sustainable Pits

Which of these zero waste deodorants is your favorite? Let me know in the comments!

Looking for more sustainable deodorant ideas? Check out these 6 plastic-free deodorants and this DIY baking soda-free deodorant recipe!

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Guest post: Hi, my name is Lottie and I have my own zero waste blog too (it’s littlebylottie.co.uk if you want to check it out or @littlebylottie on Instagram). I live across the pond in England and am super passionate about sharing easy changes you can make in your life to have a huge impact on the planet. I’ve been lucky enough to have a chat with Ariana on a few occasions. I’m so pleased to have this opportunity to write for her page.

By Ariana Storniolo (Palmieri)

Ariana Storniolo is the founder of Greenify-Me, a blog dedicated to zero waste and sustainability. Her work has also been featured on Going Zero Waste, Green Matters, Mother Earth Living and several other online publications.

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