I’ve spent the last week or so bragging about my deodorant on Facebook. Which, presumably, is precisely what Zuckerberg had in mind when he set about creating his now famed social network: “I shall create a platform from which a person can describe the aroma of her pits to all of her friends, ex-boyfriends, and a couple dozen people she doesn’t even remember going to high school with – ALL AT THE SAME TIME.” And all the investors were like, “How has civilization survived this long without a mechanism through which ex-boyfriends can learn the armpit status of their former lovers?! Here’s a bazillion dollars, Zuck.”

And now you have no reason to finally get around to watching The Social Network, because I just spoiled the ending for you.

But back to my deodorant. Making a homemade batch was on my Life List (dream big, Kell!), and I decided to make it my #BeGreen resolution for 2013. Why? Because many commercially produced deodorants (even the “all natural” hippie ones) contain a lot of crap, and I do my best to avoid rubbing crap straight onto my organs (skin, remember, is the body’s largest organ). Crap like:

  • Phthalates, a group of endocrine-disrupting chemicals typically used to soften plastics.
  • Parabens, which are a synthetic preservative used in most cosmetic products. Parabens are linked to endocrine disruption, cancer, immunotoxicity, neurotoxicity, and skin irritation.
  • Synthetic fragrances, which are linked to endocrine disruption and skin irritation.
  • Triclosan, an antimicrobial agent that has been linked to hormone disruption, skin irritation and contact dermatitis, and the emergence of antibiotic-resistant bacteria. It also ends up in our rivers and oceans, where it is toxic to marine life.

(And then there are antiperspirants with their aluminum, but I swore off those a long time ago.)

I was a little worried about switching to homemade because I am no delicate sweater and, I dunno, I guess I just figured Tom’s had some secret ingredient or something. (On further inspection I see that Tom’s contains propylene glycol, a common skin irritant. That’s not exactly the kind of “secret ingredient” I had in mind, TOM.)

Turns out, my homemade stuff works WAY better than any store-bought deodorant I’ve ever tried. But before I recommended it to all my friends, I wanted to be sure – so I subjected my all naturally deodorized pits to a series of field tests. In other words, I tried to make myself stink. This stuff held up to intense workouts, too much coffee, skipped showers, my favorite pit-hugging (sweat-inducing) sweater – and that one day that I skipped a shower AND drank too much coffee AND wore a pit-hugging shirt AND finished it all off with an intense workout.

No joke.

In fact, at no point during the 3+ months that I’ve been using this magical concoction have I smelled anything on myself that would be considered B.O. Even on the worst days, I’d put myself more in the category of “pheromone musk” than “body odor.”

So. Maybe you’d like the recipe? Of course you would. You’re welcome.