383 Responses to “New News and pH Balancing Your Old Homemade Deodorant Problems”


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  8. J

    Just wondering, has anyone had a problem with beeswax in their homemade deoderant? I had been using Bubble & Bee deoderant for over a year and then I switched to Primal Pit paste–the only different ingredient being beeswax–and a month later, I got a horrible itchy rash and cysts under each of my armpits that lasted for over a week. I stopped using any deoderant and started the ACV/water mixture above twice a day and it went away. But I’m stumped. You’d think that the beeswax wouldn’t make a difference. Not sure if it’s just a delayed reaction to the baking soda or if it was the beeswax or something else entirely. Anyone have a similar experience?

    • Addie

      I was looking into buying the primal deodorant. I’ve been using Schmidts for a few weeks and now developed cystic lumps in both underarms! All the ingredients in the lavender sage deodorant seem natural except for baking soda or sodium bicarbonate. I’ve read that baking soda is very harsh for the skin. Does it clogg pores too? Hence causing the cysts? Anyway, my right underarm has several cystic lumps that it’s difficult to keep my arm down!

      • Jaci

        I’ve been using primal pit paste for about 1 year now and just recently started getting these cyst on my armpits. They hurt really bad. No other reaction and super strange that it would happen after 1 year. I have heard that baking soda can cause a reaction but more of a rash I believe. I do love the deodorant but this is not good.

  9. Ann

    I added powdered citric acid to my DIY deodorant. Since there is no water in the deodorant mixture, the citric acid does not react with the baking soda and you end up with a more acidic pH. Citric acid is also a natural exfoliant. Along with that I also added tapioca starch instead of arrowroot. Hope this helps! Btw, start with small amounts of citric acid. More is not always better and may add some stinging “somewhat like applying vinegar to freshly scrubbed skin) though the mixture of starches and oil tend to buffer.

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    Hi, I am fairly new to your blog and am about to start the OCM! What could I use as an organic/ natural exfoliator? My skin is sensitive and combination…

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  13. Phylicia

    I recently made homemade deodorant and I’ve been using it for a couple of weeks. In that two weeks my armpits have become dark in color and be skin seems really rough. There has been some irritation but it’s been minimal and I assumed it would happen with trying something new. I just made diluted acv and filtered water so I hope it helps. Any more suggestions would be appreciated. I love it so far but the darkness of my underarms is bothering me.

    • Josie Gonzalez

      I have the same problem after two weeks use of Soapme with nature citrus deodorant. I love that I don’t have body odor but I’m worried about permanently having dark spots under my arms. Could you please let me know if you dark spots went away? I have a olive skin tone and one of my underarms looks ugly and the other one is beginning to show a dark spot.


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  16. Tara

    Betty I am one of the few I guess that has both darkening skin and itchy skin from home made deodorant :/ Apparently I am fabulous for dysfunction. I am Caucasian with medium tone color. It isn’t a “shadow” under my arm it is flat out dirty looking blech. I tried less baking soda and while the irritation disappear the stink reappeared and the filthy look stayed. I gave up for about a year and am now working on steeping my coconut oil with calendula and lavender. The jar sits in my garage so it will stay liquid. Really crossing my fingers for this attempt. I will also add some vit E oil and coco butter to the mix. I hope this will combat the irritation of baking soda.

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  22. Holly Berry

    I love that I found this 2 years to the day it was posted! Anyhow, I’ve been using the basic baking soda/arrowroot/coconut oil mix for over 5 years with great success and just recently got tender, itchy red rashes on my armpits. I’ve been applying neat tea tree oil u Der the assumption that it was my tinea versicolor lspreading to my pits. They’ve calmed slightly, but now I plan to try your act trick. Thanks!

  23. cmkelly

    i went thru my first batch of homemade deodorant and it was great! but somewhere in the second batch it was too…..full of lumps of baking soda that never worked themselves in with stirring….maybe i was too much in a rush….nonetheless you could feel the graininess of the deodorant in your hands…yes i applied straighr with my hands in a circular motion. with that batch was how i ended up with the darker pits but they weren’t darkened as much as that they were “scabbed” over…i figured i got an allergic reaction when i got sweaty or maybe when i wore a fabric that irritated it…it had to heal to not be dark…peeled like a sunburn…but it took a miserable painful week without any deoodorant. back to normal but cant use the homemade. haven’t been brave enough to make a new batch!

  24. @Admin

    know this has happened in the event that you get the insane irritation once more. As per Crunchy Betty, swabbing with apple fruit juice vinegar before applying the antiperspirant will revise the


  25. Ann

    I use a bit of fine citric acid (food-grade) in the deodorant mix. It won’t react with the baking soda because there is no water. This takes care of the pH issue.

  26. Thanks for sharing, Crunchy! I’ll have to link back to your site from mine on my own deodorant page. SO far I have kept baking soda out of my own recipe because I don’t want to have a reaction to it but I’ll have to try this method of ph rebalance when I make my next batch of deo.

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  28. Karen

    Thanks so much for the apple cider vinegar and water remedy…worked like a charm!

  29. I’m so happy I googled “itchy armpits baking soda deodorant” because it brought me to this lovely solution and awesome blog! Seriously, you’re the best!

  30. Oh so very interesting! I have found, over the years, as a natural skincare manufacturer, and the deodorant being one of my best sellers, that the couple of customers that I have had that had a reaction, was due to a systemic yeast overgrowth. In that case, I switch out the corn starch for tapioca (for free), people can use this sensitive skin formula, while making some dietary change recommendation, adding enteric coated oregano oil caps for two weeks and can then go right back to the regular deodorant. That would explain why the ACV would work though as well, as it will kill a localized yeast overgrowth too. In my experience it is from the corn starch, not the baking soda (although I don’t know if your contains corn starch), as the few customers that have had in this situation were able to use the BS/tapioca formula. But this is SO VERY interesting! Thank you for sharing!

  31. Randi

    Mmmkay, so I sweat…a LOT!! After 42 years, I’ve accepted this as a part of my life, mostly by convincing myself that it healthy to sweat, it’s the body’s way of pushing out impurities and cleansing itself and that anyone that doesn’t sweat is just weird. Now, we all know that there is a fair amount of truth to that but let’s face it — IT SUCKS! And as if the wetness wasn’t bad enough, let’s throw in some ‘funk’ to remind me (and anyone within 3′ of me) that no matter how hard I worked to get into that strappie little summer dress, nature has stricken me with the inability to wear anything sleeveless.

    A couple of years ago, I was desperate to fix this before I went to Oahu — desperate to the point that I scheduled an appointment to have botox done only to find myself standing in a methadone clinic and being told they needed a urine sample but that’s a whole other story! Needless to say, botox didn’t happen and I gave up. Then I randomly stumbled across your site and read your blog about your journey creating Kokomo and it freakin’ cracked me up! Seriously? Flaming burrito’s in your armpits? Epic!! This totally convinced me that I had to get some!

    I certainly wasn’t going to try this alone so I bought 2 jars and gave one to my 22 year old daughter. I had a little irritation at first but it subsided and it worked like a charm!! My daughter didn’t have any reaction to it and raved about it. What I didn’t know and just found out is that she hasn’t quit ordering it from you since then. Yep, my daughter is officially a Kokomo junkie! In fact, she swears that she’s never going back to store bought.

    I on the other hand, haven’t ordered anymore but only because I decided to try my hand at waxing myself and ended up in a panic when I accidentally got my hand mirror stuck to my armpit. Again, whole other story but it ended with blinding white pain and not only did it rip out all my hair, I think it took most of the ‘funk’ glands with it cause I’ve been odor free since!!

    Anyway, I wanted to share that with you and thank you for saving my vacation and let you know that my daughter is a customer for life!!

  32. I must agree that creating your own deodorant is quite the idea! This would definitely increase the quality of the indoor air, since all the pollutants in the real deodorants are simply avoided. Great ideas!

  33. androshio

    hi, i have made my own deodorant following the common recipe many years ago and i too had the rash,the dark patch under arms and even a real rough skin as well.

    the baking soda is not for me !
    it has made me so miserable i swore never again!

    the coconut oil melted under my arms in the heat and was so embarrassing-that was a joke too!

    and lastly the cost ! gathering coconut oil,which is 8 bucks where i live and the other ingredients was so dumb because the normal deodorant was only 1 dollar !

    and it smelled better too!

    why cant we all just get together and make a petition for good deodorant?
    i mean the aluminum alone is a toxic poison! isnt that enough?

    anyway … i found a great deodorant that is homemade and easy to make.

    i bought my favorite body cream and my favorite foot powder that is unscented
    and i added the two together and i got my new homemade deodorant.

    the foot powder ,controls sweat,it only has a few ingredients,and its absorbent.
    and my favorite cream makes my skin feel great ,and it comes off easily when i wash it off -not like some stick deodorants that you have to scrub and scrub to feel fresh!

    oh yeah 2 cents – by using homemade deodorant ,and using corn starch -some people have complain about a smell … that smell is a yeast infection!

    quite a few people had to buy womens yeast infection cream and put it under their arms to get rid of that smell.

    so there is a tip for everyone.

  34. YoMar

    Thank you for this, pretty dang on genius.
    Would you recommend possibly adding this to a baking soda recipe to directly counter act the aversion to the baking soda?

  35. Tanya

    Ha ha, I thought I was imagining things when I noticed my underarms looking a bit darker! Now I know I’m not! I’m not darker-skinned though, I’m a brunette but not olive-skinned.. just plain white, lol I’ve been using a handmade baking-soda based deo for years now from a great seller on ebay and I love her products but I started noticing my skin there being a bit darker! I will try your suggestions for this – I have the loofah already, that I scrub my legs & elbows with, now the armpits too!

  36. Krista

    I made a pre treatment spray as well and it’s worked great. Only I use 2/3 aloe juice, teaspoon acv, about 5 drops castor oil, 5 drops vitamin e oil, and a couple drops of tea tree and lavender ( I think I used lemongrass last time). No more bumps :)

  37. Another great article! Thanks, we have been waiting for our deodorant to run out before we try this so we’re looking forward to it.

  38. Danielle

    hey, thanks for pointing these things out. I’ve been using Dr.schmidts natural deodorant for about a year, but have been finding that it’s impossible to find. It comes in a little pot and includes a spatula, which is reminiscent of homemade deodorant. Which is why I thought about making my own deoderant when I couldn’t find it last month.

    I do have the dark armpit issue – which is why I may consider returning to Dr Schmidt. It’s honestly the first of 10 natural deodorants I’ve found that works for the full 24 hour (fresh pits the next morning!)day. Plus it smells nice. I didn’t really notice the dark skin issue with this product. And it has a nicer texture than my natural recipe.

    I didn’t have the arm pit irritation as described but I do get giant red halos (I was concerned I had ring worm!) when I either don’t use deoderant and experience sweating, or do use the natural recipe, which fade into dark patches. They are mildly irritating. I’m extremely pale/red headed. I’m wondering if Dr Schmidt was an acclimatized phase which lessened the itching.

    I’m going to try exfoliating because I only use soap and water and that is a reasonable explanation.

    As for the recipe, it’s based with baking soda, Shea butter, and coconut oil. I added lavender and lemon oils.

  39. @Admin

    I have a problem guess that has both skin darkening and itchiness from homemade deodorant. i ma insanely irritated by this problem. Can anyone help me from this problem?



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  3. […] Rather than trying to figure out exactly how to balance the PH in the deodorant recipe which I’ll leave up to chem majors – I know sodium hydroxide is sometimes used for this purpose, there are a few other quite simple options. Betty, author of Crunchy Betty’s Food on Your Face for Acne and Oily Skin and the girl behind Crunchy Betty blog, recently wrote a blog article on how to balance the PH in your homemade deodorant. […]

  4. […] disconcerting slathering it on your body once or twice a day. When I saw this article on the blog Crunchy Betty on how to make your own natural deodorant, I thought, Hey, I’ll give it a try. What’s […]

  5. […] know this has happened if you get the crazy itchiness again. According to Crunchy Betty, swabbing with apple cider vinegar before applying the deodorant will correct the […]

  6. […] vis dėlto nori tęsti natūralaus dezodoranto naudojimą. Kad subalansuoti odos natūralų pH, Crunchy Betty išrado purškiklį, pagamintą iš distiliuoto/filtruoto vandens ir obuolių acto. Būtinai naudokit obuolių actą, […]

  7. […] If you are one of the few people that develop under arm acne from the above deodorant (very pretty image isn’t it?) then you might try dabbing your pits with a mixture of 1 Tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar and  1 cup filtered water (use a spray bottle or cotton ball, whatev) before applying the deodorant.  Baking soda can irritate the skin by throwing off our natural pH balance as it is very alkaline.  The ACV helps restore that balance.  Just let ‘er dry and slather on the homemade deodorant above.  If you want to read an entertaining article with lots more detail about the ACV fix check out Crunchy Betty. […]

  8. […] know this has happened if you get the crazy itchiness again. According to Crunchy Betty, swabbing with apple cider vinegar before applying the deodorant will correct the […]

  9. […] actually have been using this concoction (get the recipes and science from Crunchy Betty) since right after the holidays and wanted to test it out for a couple weeks to make sure it […]

  10. […] redness that actually irritates you, it’s most likely due to the PH balance of your skin.  Here’s a quick and easy way to bring everything into balance without going back to conventional […]

  11. […] New news and ph balancing your old homemade deodorant […]

  12. […] one of those people, like me, who get itchy armpits from the baking soda, just check out this post from Crunchy Betty about using apple cider vinegar and water to return your armpits to normal so […]

  13. […] to balance the pH of your pits.  Baking soda reactions can be because it affects pH levels.  Crunchy Betty has a good article on […]

  14. […] and adding more starch doesn’t improve the situation, you can try the recommendations in this post for adjusting your skin’s pH. Another advantage to this powder deodorant, besides less chance […]

  15. […] sensitive to baking soda (or become sensitive to baking soda powered deodorants over time), Crunchy Betty has written up a nice little guide on re-balancing the pH of your pits so you can keep on riding […]

  16. […] is still fairly applicable to you under arms. Recently, I also discovered that Crunch Betty had written a response to others who were having the same issues with the baking soda and PH imbalance and how they could […]

  17. […] heat but I haven’t put that to the test yet.  Also, for what it’s worth, I found this article about how to balance your ph if your deodorant gives you a rash so I’ll be keeping this one […]

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