How Do I Choose the Best Salt Deodorant?

A.E. Freeman

Salt deodorant comes in several forms, from a solid rock to spray-on deodorant. Depending on the brand you choose, salt deodorant also comes in several scents, which contain added essential oils, or in a plain, unscented form. One very inexpensive option is to use baking soda as a deodorant. You may need to purchase several types of salt deodorant before finding one that works best for you and meets your needs.

Deodorants are designed to mask the smell of body odor emanating from the armpits.
Deodorants are designed to mask the smell of body odor emanating from the armpits.

The most basic salt deodorant is simply a piece of rock. To use it, you wet the rock and rub it under your armpits. For best results, you should use the rock right after bathing on dry armpits. The rock can also be applied to other areas of the body where odor is a problem, such as the feet.

Baking soda mixed with a small amount of water can be applied to the underarms as a salt deodorant.
Baking soda mixed with a small amount of water can be applied to the underarms as a salt deodorant.

Rock deodorant is commonly sold as Himalayan salt or crystal salt. Some types of crystal salt deodorant contain either potassium alum or ammonium alum, two types of inorganic salts. One type of salt deodorant, baking soda, is found commonly found in the kitchen. To use baking soda as a deodorant, mix a small amount with water and apply to the underarm. Salt deodorants block odor on the body by killing bacteria.

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Some people find the rock form of deodorant to be rough or abrasive, particularly Himalayan salt. Most types of Himalayan salt rocks are also designed to be used as a pumice stone, which would explain why they abrade the skin in some cases. If not cared for properly, the crystal salt rock can develop a rough, jagged edge. To prevent a jagged edge from forming, you should wet the rock before use and then dry it thoroughly afterward.

If you are looking for a more traditional form of salt deodorant, you can find it in either a spray or roll-on. Spray deodorants are sold in pump bottles. They may be unscented and simply contain water and salt, or they may have essential oils added for scent.

Roll-on salt deodorants may be lighter weight than non-salt deodorants and anti-antiperspirants. They won't leave a heavy residue on your skin or stain your clothing. As you don't have to worry about wetting a rock or caring for the deodorant properly, it may be your best option if you want a natural deodorant that's easy to use and take care of.

While salt deodorants prevent odor effectively in some people, you may want an added scent as well. Some deodorants are scented, usually using natural essential oils. Common scents include lavender, green or white tea, and chamomile.

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Discussion Comments


@croydon - I don't think it would, to be honest, not in the way that you're hoping anyway.

I think that once upon a time we all probably just smelled a little bit "bad" and since everyone did and everyone was used to it it wasn't a big deal.

And you can get back to that state by not using deodorant for a while, or even by just using natural deodorants, but that state is still a much stronger smell than modern people are used to. So, you wouldn't end up with a neutral smell, you'd end up slightly to the other side of "bad".


@umbra21 - I think that these sorts of deodorants probably work best on people who don't shave under their arms since that would help to protect the skin. They might take a while to work as well, since using commercial deodorants tends to throw off your bacterial load and that's what causes the odor.

In fact, when I was a teenager I started having a bad reaction to the commercial deodorant I was using and a doctor told me that I should just stop using it altogether, and that in a couple of weeks my scent would stabilize and I wouldn't smell bad. I was too embarrassed to do this as a kid, but I wonder if it would actually work.


I would definitely be cautious about this, especially if you work in a shared environment and odor could quickly become a problem. The article is right to say that this will only work for some people.

In others they might have to make repeated applications throughout the day. And for some people it might not really work at all. I've tried several different kinds of natural deodorant and none of them seemed to work at all. Most of the time they also really irritated my skin. And there's nothing worse than going to work and being caught out in the middle of a hot day without any way to get rid of your body odor.

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