Like many people who choose to wear deodorant, I used to base my purchases on how nice I thought something smelled. Sometimes that led me to great products, that were cheap, went on effortlessly, and left me smelling like a tropical vacation. Other times, not so much. It took me years to figure out that the best deodorants for women can actually do more than just smell like fruit or flowers. In fact, some of the best deodorants for women can be found in the men's section — because sweat nor scent discriminate against gender. (Hello, sandalwood and cedar!)
Unlike antiperspirants, which are used to prevent sweat, deodorants are formulated to stop the bacteria that cause odors. Since sweat itself isn't what causes odor, it all comes down to your body's unique flora — the natural bacteria that live on the skin's surface. Because our armpits are moist, warm, and prone to sweat, they're pretty much ground zero for bacteria, which can be both good and bad, and some of which can be odor-causing.
Now, there is nothing inherently wrong with odor — many people prefer their natural scent, and wearing deodorant isn't mandatory. But, if you'd rather minimize body-odors, finding a reliable deodorant that is safe and effective, well, that is easier said than done.
Scents aside, a great deodorant can nourish your skin, soothe irritation, and for the eco-conscious, the animal-lovers, or the chemical-adverse the ingredient list can even suit your lifestyle.
1This Natural Deodorant That Has A Cult Following On Amazon
Schmidt's is one of the most trusted natural deodorant brands on the market and this formula has wracked up thousands of rave reviews on Amazon. Its non-sticky and scented with sweet floral notes, and it has a mineral-rich that won't leave behind any annoying white residue. It comes in a variety of unique and interesting scents too, like ylang-ylang and calendula (shown), cedarwood and juniper, lavender and sage, and so many more. Certified vegan and cruelty-free, this deodorant doesn't have any traces of aluminum, parabens, or phthalates, making it a great pick for conscientious consumers, too.
2This Charcoal-Activated Deodorant That Absorbs Wetness
If you're looking for a gentle alternative to baking soda-formulated deodorants, this activated charcoal deodorant (which was featured on ABC's Shark Tank) may be just the thing. It's soothing on sensitive skin and does an amazing job absorbing wetness and creating a pH-balanced environment for your pits, so odors are neutralized naturally.
3This Fragrance-Free, Vegan Deodorant That's Tough On Sweat
This unscented, all-natural deodorant goes to town on bacteria-causing odor, using ultra-absorbent tapioca starch to deodorize and absorb underarm moisture. Also made with magnesium and unrefined shea butter, this vegan and gluten-free deodorant is an extra-strength lifesaver with thousands of glowing reviews on Amazon.
4This Woodsy-Smelling Deodorant That Literally Lasts For Days
With its cedar scent and long-lasting odor protection, this vegan deodorant is a good way to keep underarms feeling dry and fragrant. It's an all-natural aluminum-free formula, and if you're a conscious-shopper you'll appreciate that the packaging is eco-friendly. One Amazon reviewer says: "Best deodorant I've ever used. First time a natural deodorant works better than Old Spice or Axe and no chemicals! Can wear three days and no odor at all."
5This Deodorant That's A Prescription-Strength Anti-Perspirant
If you're looking for a deodorant that will serve as a strong anti-perspirant this prescription-strength option is your best bet. It's has Aluminum Zirconium Tetrachlorohydrex Gly (20 percent), which helps to prevent sweating for up to 48 hours. It also has body-responsive odor protection and red berry and citrus scent.
6This Antiperspirant Deodorant For Sensitive Skin
If you're looking for superior sweat protection and you're not adverse to aluminum this antiperspirant deodorant is strong but thanks to the inclusion of vitamin E the company says it's also suitable for sensitive skin. It's a solid stick that goes on transparent, leaving no trace of residue behind, and the scent is light and clean. Plus, it's vegan, cruelty-, alcohol-, and paraben-free.
7This Aluminum-Free Roll-On That Absorbs Moisture For Up To 24 Hours
Sick of perspiration stains and deodorant that leaves behind an oily residue? This roll-on deodorant is dry to the touch and glides on invisible, so you never have to worry about it staining clothes. Made with odor-neutralizing zinc gluconate and Vichy Mineralizing Water, which works to restore skin's moisture barriers, this salt and aluminium-free deodorant delivers 24-hour protection from sweat and stank.
8This Spray-On That Forms A Protective Barrier Against Odor-Causing Bacteria
This unscented deodorant spray is made with mineral salt and doesn't just target the underarm area. It can be used anywhere on your body to prevent odor, and works by forming a protective barrier between bacteria and skin. Because this hypoallergenic spray has no traces of aluminum or parabens, it's also suitable for those with sensitive skin.
9This Soothing Deodorant That's Actually Made With Organic Vodka
While this tea tree oil-enriched cream deodorant shares a lot in common with other deodorants already mentioned here (it features activated charcoal powder and is free of aluminum, parabens, and phthalates), it has something else that sets it apart. This cream is formulated with organic vodka, which might seem weird at first, but because vodka is a powerful natural preservative, it makes this deodorant great at eliminating odor-causing bacteria.
10This Small-Batch Deodorant Made In The USA
Made in small batches in the United States, this deodorant uses handpicked essential oils, like neem and tea tree oil to help fight against bacteria and fungus. It also uses arrowroot powder and baking soda to absorb moisture and wetness. Plus, it nourishes skin with vitamin E, coconut oil, and shea butter. WV Timber (pictured) is among their most popular scents and smells like cedarwood and fir needles.
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