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Aluminum is great in the kitchen, but the heavy metal has gotten a bad rap in the beauty sphere. While the jury is still out on its correlation to breast cancer, the debate understandably gives many people pause—so much so that many men have opted to jump ship from traditional aluminum-filled antiperspirants to ones, well, without.
But then there's the question of whether or not natural deodorants for men actually work, especially for guys who are prone to excessive sweating. "Antiperspirants typically contain aluminum, which blocks sweat glands, in turn reducing sweat excretion," says triple board-certified dermatopathologist Dr. Gretchen Frieling. "Deodorants help block body odor but don’t stop you from sweating. Natural deodorants typically work by masking odor with fragrances or using properties to combat the bacteria that break down sweat." So while natural deodorants for men won't act on sweat production, the best of these cleaner formulas do keep odor at bay quite well, not to mention the satisfaction of keeping aluminum off your pits.
Whether you’re looking for a workout-grade deodorant or just something to keep you smelling fresh throughout the day, the burgeoning natural deodorant scene provides lots of options.
Here are our recommendations for the best natural deodorants for men.
Best Overall: Schmidt's Deodorant Stick
Schmidt’s deodorants have garnered a cult following for a reason. Aside from the fact that they work, they’re also super accessible at a wallet-friendly price point. The formula contains time-tested ingredients like baking soda, magnesium salts, and coconut oil, all of which do the heavy lifting to keep you smelling clean all day long.
Try letting the stick warm against your skin before swiping it on. This warms up the oils in the formula for a clean, easy glide.
Best for Workouts: Ursa Major Hoppin’ Fresh Deodorant
If you're the type of guy who needs a natural deodorant that can keep up with your active lifestyle, this is the one to reach for. It's powered by kaolin clay to absorb extra moisture while eliminating any less-than-savory smells. It’s scented with mint and eucalyptus too, so it has that cooling, tingly freshness upon application. Apply it to your heart's content—whether that's in the morning, before bed, or right before hitting the gym.
Best Scent: Malin + Goetz Eucalyptus Deodorant
An early pioneer for aluminum-free deodorant, this tube packs a punch with its strong-yet-subtle eucalyptus fragrance, which pairs with pretty much anything. This one’s residue-free, so you don’t have to worry about white marks on your skin or clothes post-application. The chic packaging is only a plus—think of it as an aesthetic upgrade for your medicine cabinet as much as your armpits.
Best Spray: Aesop Herbal Deodorant
A long way from health club aerosol deodorants, this hydrosol spray-on makes for ease of application without sacrificing chic. In Aesop’s traditional brown bottle packaging, several spritzes and some drying time are all you need to keep fresh.
Just as well scented as Aesop’s other herbaceous offerings, this sage-forward spray complements cologne while standing alone with its own complex notes. A lot of the oils on this ingredient list are just for good measure: zinc ricinoleate does the heavy lifting for keeping B.O. at bay.
Best for Sensitive Skin: Baxter of California Deodorant
Ticking off alcohol from the ingredient list (as well as aluminum), this deodorant is ideal for anyone with sensitive or delicate skin underarms. It relies on witch hazel in its place, a natural astringent. It even counts chamomile as a soothing agent, while comfrey and yarrow condition the delicate skin in the area as well. The scent is citrusy and musky, a great combo.
Best for First-Timers: Method Men Deodorant
Whether you’re a skeptic or a traditional antiperspirant loyalist, this no-nonsense deodorant stick is a great way to get acquainted with natural deodorants for the first time. It is made with plant and mineral-based odor fighters (and comes in four clean scents. Our favorite? Try Sea + Surf and we promise you won’t be missing your antiperspirant for very long.
Best Variety: Native Men’s Deodorant
With a range of scents wide enough to cover seasonal changes (what says winter better than Bergamot & Pine?), Native Men’s Deodorant has something for everyone. Whether you opt for a classic unscented option, light cucumber and mint combo, or an extra detoxifying punch with charcoal, the sheer volume of options available makes this one a winner, especially when coupled with its odor-protecting prowess.
Bonus: If you love these deodorants as much as we expect you to, know that you can buy value packs with multiple sticks, and they even give you the option to create your own mix of favorites.
Best Unisex: Each & Every All Natural Aluminum Free Deodorant
Between the provincial-meets-practical packaging and wide range of botanical scents, this one’s great for men and women alike. From the woody, sweet cedar and vanilla combination to the warm cardamom and ginger blend, there’s an option for everyone on the market. Aside from the essential oils, it only has six ingredients, so it agrees with a wide range of skin types, too.
Best Budget: Jason Purifying Tea Tree Deodorant
With an antibacterial agent as strong as tea tree oil behind it, this deodorant really goes to town on body odor. It has other powerhouse ingredients like baking soda and zinc ricinoleate to do some of the legwork, and we love that it doesn't cost a ton of money. All-day odor protection plus affordable prices—what's not to love there?
Best for Minimalists: Jack Henry Deodorant
Coming in with just five (!) ingredients, this deodorant spray from Jack Henry may take the cake for the most minimalist formula that still works. The only non-organic ingredient is the artesian spring water base, which is infused with organic witch hazel, eucalyptus, bergamot, and lavender. Essential oil fans, this one’s for you.
Best Pads: Surface Deep Anti-Odorant Pads
If you’ve ever used a peel pad on your face, then you know the drill. These pre-sealed, individual packets exfoliate dead skin with fruit-based glycolic acid, taking away odor-causing bacteria in the process. It even has probiotics to keep your skin’s microbiome balanced.
The single-use pads are biodegradable, so you won’t feel badly opening up a fresh one each day. Not to mention, they’re 100% vegan certified cruelty-free, so all your bases are covered.
Best Customizable: Hawthorne Tailored Deodorant
In case you’re not ready to let Hawthorne overhaul your whole grooming routine, try starting with their Tailored Deodorant. First, you’ll have to take a quiz to delineate your lifestyle, skin type, and your main deodorant concerns. But the result is always free of aluminum, parabens, and silicones, not to mention scented with mint and eucalyptus. This one’s stain-free, too. So, go ahead and apply as much as you feel you need to.