Sweet Orange & Frankincense Homemade Natural Deodorant Recipe

Learn how to make this non-toxic homemade natural deodorant recipe that features sweet orange and frankincense essential oils, along with herbal infused coconut oil for extra skin-soothing properties.

A jar of sweet orange chamomile deodorant

This recipe makes a cream style natural deodorant that you store in a jar and spread on with your fingers.

You only need a small amount to be effective!

The creamy base is made up of shea butter, beeswax and coconut oil, while white kaolin clay (or baking soda) and arrowroot provide thickening and odor protection.

I suggest infusing the coconut oil with beneficial herbs first (see below), but if you’re unable to, the recipe will work fine with plain coconut oil too.

For the essential oils, I wanted a clean summery scent that would also be safe for sun exposure, all ages, pregnancy and breastfeeding.

One of my go-to books for trustworthy essential oil information is: The Complete Aromatherapy & Essential Oils Handbook for Everyday Wellness.

I settled on using sweet orange essential oil for the primary scent, along with a small amount of frankincense, at a total dilution rate of around 1%.

(Note: While sweet orange (Citrus sinensis) is considered to be sun safe, many other types of citrus essential oils aren’t, so be sure to research first if using substitutions.)

I love this essential oil combination and hope you do too!

Some links on this site are affiliate links; I only recommend products I personally use and enjoy. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

chamomile infusing in oil

Herbal Infused Coconut Oil for Skin Soothing Benefits

To add an extra boost of goodness to your homemade deodorant, try infusing the coconut oil with herbs before making this deodorant.

I used chamomile for this batch, but other good choices include:

  • chamomile – soothes itchy skin
  • calendula – helpful for broken or damaged skin
  • plantain – helpful for irritated or itchy skin
  • violet leaf – calms and cools, lymph health
  • dandelion – may help dry skin
  • rose petals – anti-inflammatory, astringent
  • sunflower petals – conditions skin

In addition, some herbs contribute other helpful benefits, such as the ones included in my DIY Herbal Deodorant for Women, which features ingredients helpful for lymph flow and breast health.

To infuse coconut oil:

Fill a heatproof jar about halfway with your chosen herb or flower, or combine several herbs at once. Fill the jar almost to the top with coconut oil. (You can add it in solid state or melt it first.)

Set the uncovered jar down into a saucepan containing several inches of water, forming a makeshift double boiler.

Place the pan over low heat for 2 to 3 hours, keeping a close eye that the water doesn’t evaporate out.

Remove the jar from heat, strain and use in your recipe.

bowl of chamomile flowers and orange slice with jar of natural homemade deodorant

Sweet Orange & Frankincense Homemade Natural Deodorant Recipe

Directions to make:

  1. Place the shea butter, beeswax, and coconut oil in a heatproof container or jar.
  2. Set the jar down into a saucepan containing a few inches of water.
  3. Heat the pan over medium-low heat until everything is completely melted.
  4. Remove from heat.
  5. Stir in the white kaolin clay (or baking soda), arrowroot powder and essential oils.
  6. Stir frequently while cooling to ensure a creamy texture.
  7. Spoon the finished deodorant in a jar.

This recipe almost fills a 4 oz jar.

Shelf life is around 9 months to 1 year. Keep out of direct sunlight and store in a cool dry area.

Troubleshooting homemade deodorant:

If your deodorant turns out too hard for your preference, melt it again and add a teaspoon or two of a liquid oil, such as jojoba, sunflower, sweet almond, etc.

If the deodorant is too soft, try melting it and adding a pinch more beeswax.

Make sure to stir, stir, stir, especially in the first 5 to 10 minutes that the deodorant is cooling. This is what gives it a creamier texture.

If your deodorant develops graininess over time, that’s likely from the shea butter. To fix, melt the batch of deodorant until entirely melted and no lumps remain. Stir well as it cools. You may need to add a few more drops of essential oil in case some of the scent evaporates during reheating.

Remember that homemade deodorants help with odor protection, but they don’t act as antiperspirants. You will still sweat when using homemade deodorant.

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Jan Berry is a writer, herbalist, soapmaker, and bestselling author of The Big Book of Homemade Products, Simple & Natural Soapmaking, and Easy Homemade Melt & Pour Soaps. She lives in the Blue Ridge Mountains with her family and a menagerie of animals, where she enjoys brainstorming creative things to make with the flowers and weeds that grow around her.

  • Lisa Owens says:

    where do you get your herbs and ingredients, and could you give me an idea of how much they cost?

    • Hi Lisa! I buy many herbs and oils from Mountain Rose Herbs – they have high quality organic products, so their prices are on the higher side. Another great place is Bramble Berry, though shipping is high there. Bulk Apothecary has some reasonable prices, but are often backordered on things you order. Amazon has tons of great stuff at great prices, but I’ve found that the quality isn’t always reliable. You especially won’t find a lot of true essential oils on there; they tend to be cut with synthetic fillers. So, you really have to kind of shop around and compare prices to get the best deals and best quality. :)

  • Jen says:

    My problem with homemade deodorants has been grease spots in the armpits of clothes that are hard to wash completely out. At this point I’ve given up and gone back to store bought – but if there’s a way to avoid the grease, I’d like to avoid store bought

    • Hi Jen! You could try reducing the amount of coconut oil in a recipe to see if that helps. I live in old t-shirts, so haven’t really noticed any grease stains, but with nicer clothes that may very well happen! Less coconut oil and perhaps more arrowroot (or whatever the absorbent ingredient is in your recipe – like cornstarch, clay, etc) may help.

  • Jen says:

    And I’ve preferred to make stick style so I don’t get fingers/hands all messy. Although I’ve never tried a cream deodorant so I’m making an assumption that there’s mess after applying.

    • With cream deodorant, you only put a little dab on your fingertip and rub in well, so they’re not very messy at all. I tend to like them better than stick style because you can more easily control just where you want it. To make it in a stick form though, you can add a pinch more beeswax and instead of stir, stir, stirring as it cools, just pour it straight into the tube and it will have a more solid texture. :)

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  • Liz (Eight Acres) says:

    That scent combination sounds amazing!

  • Ana says:

    Hi Jan
    Thank you for this recipe! As I don’t have orange eo on hand what I could substitute it with?
    I checked also the other recipe you posted a while ago – I have neem powder (not oil as you have used) how much would you recommend to use instead..
    Thank you in advance for all your help. I always enjoy to read and to try to make your recipes. Keep up the good work!!

    • Hi Ana! Instead of orange essential oil, you could try something like grapefruit or lemongrass (though be aware some skin types are extra-sensitive to lemongrass), or for a different scent profile you could try cedarwood (atlas) and lavender.
      For the neem powder, you could try infusing some of the coconut oil with maybe a few teaspoons, then strain well after infusing time. I wouldn’t use *too* much neem since the scent can overpower everything else. :)

  • Alexandra says:

    This sounds great! Can substitute the arrowroot powder for tapioca starch?

  • Jessica says:

    Is there an alternative to the beeswax that can be successfully used?

    • Hi Jessica! You could experiment with candelilla wax instead. I usually start off with about half as much candelilla wax as beeswax. In this recipe, that’d be 1/2 oz candelilla wax instead of 1 oz beeswax.
      You’ll probably have to tinker with the ratios a bit. If it’s too firm, then melt everything back down and add more oil. If it’s too soft, melt back down and add more wax. Candelilla wax can be found at BrambleBerry.com. :)

  • Kayleigh says:

    Hiya,
    I’ve been reading your blog for a while now, I tend to visit it every few months or so. I’m keen to actually start trying some of these recipes. But I’m mostly worried about using the right equipment. Do you have a post where you go through what pots/pans you use, what implements you use and what materials equipment is made out of and their sizes?

  • Rita says:

    Jan, I just wanted to say that this recipe is wonderful. My husband and mother are very sensitive to baking soda, so I have to be so cautious with these natural deodorant recipes. But your recipe has worked perfectly on all of us, no irritation and no stink! This is a big deal when you consider we live in Texas and it is summertime right now.

    This combo of scents is also perfect, it reminds of of orange icing and smells incredibly delicious. :-)

    The only change I will make next time is adding a few more tsp of arrowroot powder. Then it will be a little more powdery and less sticky. As is it is great, but during the humid weather the extra arrowroot will be a nice addition.

    Thank you again for sharing this recipe! I have all of your books and am a huge fan. <3

    • Hi Rita, That’s great to hear that you like the recipe! Thanks for the handy tip about adding more arrowroot powder; that will be helpful for many to know! Thanks for the kind words & support too! :)

  • Justine says:

    Hello- I made this deodorant and have been using it for about two months now. This last week I’ve developed a horrible red rash in both armpits. Do you have any suggestions on how I could change the recipe to prevent the rash? I’ve used natural commercial deodorants with no problem. Should I try it without baking soda?
    I love your soap and shampoo bar recipes! I’m just trying to figure out a way to get this deodorant to work for me. Thank you.

  • Armaghan Ahmad says:

    Hi

    I would like to make spray solution instead of roll on. Please tell me what to do.

    Best Regards

    • Hi Armaghan! That sounds like a really nice idea! I hadn’t really thought about that before, so I’m not sure how to go about that at this time, but will have to think about that idea some more. I like it! :)

  • Rosemary says:

    I have made this deodorant and I love it . It works and doesn’t irritate my skin and I’ve used it on a cold sore that was forming and it healed up in an hour . Thank you for your generosity in sharing the recipe. I used lemongrass essential oil but everything else was the same.

    • Jan says:

      Hi Rosemary! I’m so happy to hear that you like the deodorant recipe! This is one of my favorites as well. :)

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