What To Expect When Switching to Clean Deodorant

by Elise Gabriel 3 min read

What To Expect When Switching to Clean Deodorant - Paradox

Real talk: there can be a transition period when you make the switch from antiperspirant deodorant to aluminum-free deodorant. And with social distancing, there’s never been a more perfect time to make the switch (you know, in case you smell). But what should you expect? And how long does the detox last?

Let's chat about everything you need to know about switching to a natural deodorant.

Our friends at female-founded clean deodorant brand Curie shared some information on the subject, which we’ve broken down below. 


What happens during the transition period?

Antiperspirants are designed to clog your pores, preventing your body’s natural reaction to staying in motion, which is to sweat. During the detox process, your glands release all the old toxins (including aluminum), which can cause irritation, redness, or even a rash.

At the same time, your body is adjusting its pH levels in response to the sweat that it’s allowing itself to release. As a reminder, it’s good to sweat! Sweating allows your body to regulate its temperature and clean itself from the inside out. Once you correct the bacterial imbalances in your armpits, your sweat should smell less unpleasant and your clean deodorant will be much more effective.

What causes a rash?

If you produce more sweat, your armpits may have higher friction which can cause redness. This is normal and only occurs during the time it takes your sweat glands to adjust to their new, natural perspiration cycle. 

Baking soda is a key ingredient in virtually all clean stick deodorants for its antibacterial properties. However, as your pits unclog and detox, your sweat may temporarily become more acidic. As a result, irritation can sometimes occur while you adjust to the baking soda found in natural deodorants. If you’re concerned about the potential for a reaction, get baking soda-free deodorant!

How long does the detox last?

The good news is, it only takes most people 5–10 days to transition and for some no time at all. Every person is different, but you may notice yourself sweating a bit more and not smelling your best during this period. And if you experience irritation from the switch, your healing time can be anywhere from a few days to a few weeks. Hang in there, it's worth it. 



What can I do to make it better?
  • Watch your diet: alcohol and spicy foods can contribute to less than pleasant body odor. So if you notice you’re not feeling fresh during the transition period, ditch the spicy margs for a bit so you don’t make it worse.
  • Keep It Clean: clean your pits at the end of the day with mild soap and warm water.
  • Shaving 101: when you shave, you are making micro-tears in delicate skin. Applying anything to a fresh, small, open wound can cause irritation. We suggest giving your armpits some time after shaving before applying deodorant. And make sure your razor is fresh and new to eliminate bacteria build-up!
  • Vinegar Rub: apply a small amount of apple cider vinegar to a cotton ball and dab your armpits at night to help reduce the pH of your armpits.
  • Exfoliate with a sugar scrub: once any irritation has stopped, you can use a sugar scrub to help remove dead skin cells and encourage healing.
  • Soothe with oils: finally, when you’re on your way to healing, use a natural oil like argan or coconut oil to help revitalize, soothe, and heal your sensitive underarms.
  • And lastly, try an at-home DIY armpit mask:
For beauty tips, skincare products, and more content like this, follow us on Instagram @paradox and make sure to check out our article on “Black Owned Businesses We Love.”


Elise Gabriel
Elise Gabriel

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