Hear Me Out: This Crystal Deodorant Has Stood Up to My Sweatiest Travel Days

Image zoom (c) Ascent Xmedia

Let me, first, say this: I never envisioned myself writing something on the internet in praise of any sort of natural deodorant.

It’s not that I’m prejudiced against a chemical-free lifestyle — I’ve got nothing against washing your hair with honey and brushing your teeth with coconut oil if it makes you feel good — it’s just that this type of hyper-dedication to clean living has never really been a concern for me.

I am vaguely aware that chemicals are bad for you. And I’m sure you’ve also heard about the studies linking common ingredients in commercial antiperspirants — aluminum chlorohydrate, chloride, zirconium — to a heightened risk for breast cancer and other conditions. But most of those studies are less than conclusive, and the jury is still very much out on the matter. Perhaps it’s nihilistic of me, but at this point, it seems exhausting to avoid all chemicals that may or may not kill me in today’s world.

Yet, here we are. Because a few years ago, upon concluding that it can’t be bad to put fewer strange substances on my body, I spontaneously ordered a crystal deodorant stone from Amazon. And I’m now a low-key crystal deodorant evangelist — not particularly because I think it’s safer, but because I think it’s better than regular deodorant. It’s a product that I’ve taken with me around the world, and it never lets me down. Here’s why I love it:

There’s only one ingredient.

I know I expressed ambivalence about chemicals earlier, but I have to admit that this is generally a good quality for any item you plan to rub on your body on a daily basis. Especially when this ingredient comes from the literal earth. My deodorant stone of choice is a crystal of potassium alum, a salt drawn from bauxite ore. There isn’t a ton of scientific research on how this alum behaves differently from the other dreaded aluminum compounds — some claim alum isn’t absorbed into the bloodstream at all; others say there’s almost no difference — but net-net, I prefer this to the laundry list of chemicals that go into a typical antiperspirant. Plus, I find it genuinely cool that my deodorant is a rock.

Image zoom Courtesy of Amazon

I don’t spend money on deodorant anymore.

You can get one crystal stick for $5-8 or a four-pack for as little as $20. That’s already pretty comparable to the drugstore stuff, and these will last a lot longer. To use a deodorant stone, you wet the crystal and rub it on your clean underarms — basically creating a thin layer of dissolved salt which will neutralize bacteria on the surface. It takes a long time to wear down a crystal in this way. This year, I’ve gone through two and still have a lot of life left in the second… And that’s only because I dropped the first one. Maybe that’s the one downside here: if you drop a crystal, it can shatter into several sharp pieces that are a lot less pleasant to rub on your armpits.

If you’re trying to cut down on chemicals, it’s one of the easiest steps you can take.

I know it may sound intimidating to jump right into using a deodorant without any fragrances or moisturizers. For those who are, understandably, hesitant to just rub a wet rock on your armpit and call it a day, I suggest easing into it with what many natural wellness communities on the internet call an “armpit detox” — a transitional period that supposedly is helpful in making the sometimes-tumultuous switch after a post-puberty lifetime of chemical antiperspirant use. The idea here is to draw out the lingering chemicals and restore a healthy underarm environment (pH balance, good bacteria… all of that fun stuff).

Image zoom Courtesy of Sway

Start with a detox kit from Sway, the only product on the market that taps into the many beneficial properties of apple cider vinegar — supplemented with ingredients like rosewater, tea tree oil, lemon, and lavender to keep you moisturized and smelling good. The kit also comes with a citrus-scented powder to dust on afterward (my favorite part) which has arrowroot to absorb excess moisture and baking soda to neutralize odor. This can also be a great deodorant routine long-term if you’re still not sure about going full-on crystal, but…

It actually works. I’m serious.

Should any doubters remain, let me just say this one more time: I wouldn’t be writing about this if it didn’t work. And I know a lot of people use and rave about natural deodorants that don’t. But crystals do, provided you use them correctly. The most important factor is applying the crystal to a clean canvas (armpit). If you’re already sweaty, this won’t help — but morning and night applications with the occasional deep scrub-down have kept me feeling fresh without fail. Added bonus: no white deodorant marks on black clothing, ever.

That being said, it should be noted that crystal deodorant is not an antiperspirant, nor am I a particularly sweaty person (middle-school me would be happy to know this). If you’re looking to stop sweating, this isn’t the product for you. But I have used this deodorant in very, very sweaty situations — 100-degree heat in rural Uzbekistan, the stifling humidity of the Abu Dhabi summer, transatlantic red-eye flights, camping trips, first dates, job interviews — and it has not failed me. It has my skeptic’s stamp of approval, and I’m willing to bet it will earn yours, too. You can buy a Thai Deodorant Stone for $8 on Amazon. Sway’s Underarm Detox Starter Kit is $19.99, also on Amazon.

It’s hard to remember a time when you couldn’t find paraben-free skin care at the drugstore and 10-free nail polish at the neighborhood salon. But back in the early ‘80s, before the term “natural” was everywhere, there was one pioneering company with the foresight to bring it out of dusty health-food stores and into the high-gloss fashion world: the makers of the Crystal deodorant stone.

Yes, I’m talking about the same brand that you can now score for less than a ten-spot on Amazon. Back in the day, its inaugural product was considered a total luxury item—a hunk of French-sourced mineral salt that looked like an actual crystal and effectively deodorized without added chemicals.

Though it’s maintained a cult following among natural beauty die-hards for over 30 years, the rock’s finding itself in the spotlight once again.

And though it’s maintained a cult following among natural beauty die-hards for over 30 years, the rock’s finding itself in the spotlight once again, thanks to an ever-growing contingent of clean cosmetics crusaders. (The high-vibe gemstone craze may also have something to do with it—I mean, who wouldn’t want to have something that looks like a block of clear quartz as part of their bathroom #shelfie?)

Clearly, the Crystal deodorant stone is finally having its mass moment—but is the healthy cred justified? And seriously, how exactly does a “crystal” keep your stink in check?

Here’s what you need to know about the Crystal deodorant stone.

View this post on Instagram

Our Mineral Deodorant Stone revolutionized the deodorant category when it first launched in 1984… It’s been a fan favorite ever since! #CrystalDeodorant #TheOriginalCRYSTALDeodorant

A post shared by CRYSTAL™ Deodorant (@crystaldeodorant) on Sep 19, 2018 at 10:37am PDT

The natural deodorant with fashion-world roots

Crystal’s origin story dates way back to 1984, when founder Jerry Rosenblatt was importing French fashion accessories to pay his way through law school. “I became aware of a factory in France that was producing large blocks of natural mineral salt for water purification—and they could also be used to combat the bacteria that causes body odor,” says the San Francisco-based entrepreneur. By wetting the Crystal deodorant stone and smoothing it under the arm, an invisible salt film sits on the surface of the skin. It doesn’t stop you from sweating, but it does keep scent-forming microbes at bay.

Sensing an opportunity, Rosenblatt asked the factory if they could make palm-sized chunks of the salt—potassium alum—for him to merchandise in the US. Once they arrived stateside, he then employed people with disabilities through Easter Seals to sand, polish, and package them. “They looked like a natural rock you’d find in your backyard,” he says.

Henri Bendel jumped at the opportunity to launch this curious new product, setting a price point of $18.

Henri Bendel jumped at the opportunity to launch this curious new product, placing an ad in The New York Times and setting a price point of $18. (With inflation, that’d be about $40 today.) The New York City luxury department store’s entire inventory sold out within 24 hours of running the ad—and within a year, Le Crystal Naturel deodorant (the name it used to go by) was in just about every high-end shop from coast to coast.

“Bullocks Wilshire in Los Angeles gave me an entire window display for the rock, and I. Magnin in San Francisco loved the product so much that they had a pile of on every single cosmetics counter,” Rosenblatt recalls. “Hardly anyone thought about ‘natural’ back then, but it was just so unique. My Bullocks Wilshire buyer used to keep the product on the coffee table in his living room—he loved to hear the comments from the guests when they’d come to his house.”

View this post on Instagram

It’s not easy being clean! It might be more work to formulate with clean ingredients, but we believe in formulating products that are safe for your body and the environment. #CleanBeauty #Parabenfree #Deodorant #CrystalDeodorantCelebrate Earth Month with $4 Off when you order 3+ CRYSTAL™ products: www.theCrystal.com

A post shared by CRYSTAL™ Deodorant (@crystaldeodorant) on Apr 28, 2019 at 8:21am PDT

The Crystal deodorant stone goes mass

Crystal continued to ride the high-fashion wave until around 1988. Rosenblatt says that’s when most department stores eliminated their beauty accessory departments, where the deodorant was sold, in favor of single-brand cosmetics counters. He then had to quickly retool the rock for a mass-market debut, shortening its name to Crystal.

“To put the product on the shelf, I had to change the design to something that looked more like deodorant,” he says. The first iteration, which still exists today, was potassium alum shaped and placed in a container, just like a deodorant stick. “At the time, this was all being done by hand—guys in the factory were sitting on the floor with hammers as they chiseled away at these rock shapes,” Rosenblatt says.

“At the time, this was all being done by hand—guys in the factory chiseled away at these rock shapes.”

Over the years, new versions followed—a liquid roll-on, a spray, a line scented with essential oils, and a men’s offshoot developed with the help of the nose from Axe body spray—all of which continue to use mineral salts as their key odor-fighting ingredient. (The rock’s not sold in most stores these days, but you can still get it online.)

Also noteworthy: In the ensuing years, other brands have followed suit. (Naturally Fresh has a roll-on option, while Thai Deodorant Stone offers up a stick, for example). In other words, Crystal is no longer the only rock in the game.

Photo: Getty Images/Frederic Cirou

Is Crystal still considered safer than regular deodorant?

Though the Crystal deodorant stone is famously free of aluminum chloride and aluminum chlorohydrate—synthetic chemicals that have been linked to breast cancer—its key ingredient does contain naturally-occurring aluminum that could potentially penetrate the skin when mixed with water. (Same goes for the other stone deodorant brands.) No studies have directly proven the element in its organic state to be harmful, but it’s still caused some controversy among natural-beauty devotees.

Its key ingredient does contain naturally-occurring aluminum that could potentially penetrate the skin when mixed with water.

Even so, Crystal meets Whole Foods’ exacting standards according to Steven Benoit, the grocery brand’s global Whole Body buyer. “We ban ingredients from our Whole Body department,” he says. “While we carry a variety of effective natural deodorants, Crystal has been a long-time customer favorite as a dependable deodorant with clean, simple ingredients.”

Wellness influencers dig it, too. “I gave up using antiperspirants 10 years ago because of the aluminum and other scaries in there, so I love that Crystal is clean and actually works,” says Tove Lo’s nutrition guru, Courtney Swan.

Add in the fact that it’s a fraction of the price of newer natural deodorants, and it’s clear why this ‘80s phenomenon’s outlasted shoulder pads and perms.

For more clean beauty intel, check out the 3 products in your makeup bag you should swap out first and the ultra-gentle, drugstore baby aisle products you should buy for yourself.

Originally published on June 8, 2017. Updated on September 16, 2019.

Alum stone deodorant and aftershave

The deodorant crystal our customers are raving about!

The alum stone is a simple and effective natural deodorant that can also be used as an aftershave. It’s a mineral salt, so it stops odor producing bacteria from forming, making it a safe and effective natural deodorant.

Each alum stone is a unique mineral crystal with slight variations in shape and appearance. They are natural, hypoallergenic, cruelty-free and vegan.

When used as an aftershave, it soothes nicks and cuts, and helps to prevent razor burn or skin irritation from shaving.

Alum stones will help you sweat less, but they aren’t an antiperspirant meaning they don’t block your body from releasing toxins or cooling down. They are a nontoxic, beautiful and package free alternative to deodorant.

Use and care

Gently wet the surface and apply as you would deodorant.

The alum stone works best when your pores are clean and open, such as after a shower. You can also use a warm or soapy washcloth to cleanse your underarm, and then apply the stone. Either works just fine! Cleansing your underarm first is the trick to what makes this so effective.

It can have a bit of an adjustment period like any natural deodorant. We suggest giving the detox phase a few weeks for it to work its best.

Please note: It is a salt crystal that dissolves with moisture, so pat to dry if needed and store somewhere dry.

It does not expire, nor is it temperature sensitive. With daily use, this stone should last over a year.

Types

Classic – Each alum stone is a unique mineral crystal with slight variations in shape and appearance.

Imperfect – We inspect each stone from our manufacturer and have discounted some due to more noticeable imperfections. “Imperfect” alum stones are not broken, they are typically just slightly chipped around the edges, but work just as well!

Travel/sample size – This is a perfect way to sample an alum stone if you’re unsure, or just want a smaller piece for travel. These are pieces of stones that were broken during shipment, so putting these to use is truly zero waste! Each has a smooth outer side that can glide against your skin.

Size

This stone weighs 5.3 oz.

Ingredients

Potassium Alum (Mineral Salts).

Alum stones contain a naturally occurring form of aluminum (Potassium Alum) that does not possess the same health risks as the aluminums in many antiperspirant deodorants (Aluminum Chloride/Chlorohydrate/Zirconium), which block sweat ducts and glands. Potassium Alum is a different chemical compound and stays on the surface of your skin, making alum stones safe to use.

Does not contain Parabens.

Packaging

None.

Origin

Made in France.

End of life

Use until it’s too small to hold. It should last around 2 years. You’ll end up with a small piece that is basically a rock, so you won’t want to put it in a compost bin but what you can do is sand it into a powder (it’s a very soft crystal), add water and put it in a spray bottle to keep using as deodorant! Zero waste!

When it comes to avoiding sweat stains and smelling fresh, an antiperspirant-deodorant combo has probably become your best friend. But recently, the men’s grooming aisle has grown to include natural, charcoal, and even crystal deodorants, making it tempting to give up the trusty Speed Stick you’ve been using for years.

Crystal deodorant is a particularly buzzy option right now among people looking for something natural to put in their pits. But what is it, exactly?

First, it’s important to know that crystal deodorant is not an antiperspirant. Deodorant and anti-perspirant—though often combined in mainstream products—are two different things. Antiperspirants block sweat ducts to prevent you from sweating, while deodorants kill odor-causing bacteria, according to the American Chemical Society.

So what is crystal deodorant, anyway?

Crystal deodorant contains a mineral salt called potassium alum, according to Healthline. Used for centuries in Southeast Asia, this natural deodorant alternative started gaining popularity in the West in the 1980s.

The best-known maker of crystal deodorant is a brand called Crystal, appropriately. According to Shilpi Agarwal, M.D., Crystal came about when its founder, Jerry Rosenblatt, traveled to France in 1984 and discovered a mineral salt that purified water. He thought these salts could be used as a natural and hypoallergenic deodorizer, so he imported and packaged them as a crystal deodorant.

He then founded the company Crystal, which now sells roll-on, stick and spray crystal deodorants.

When wet and applied to clean skin, the mineral salts in crystal deodorant prevent the growth of odor-causing bacteria, Agarwal explains. However, crystal deodorant doesn’t actually stop you from sweating, which for a lot of sweaty dudes out there, might be a problem.

Caiaimage/Robert DalyGetty Images

Should you switch to crystal deodorant?

One of the big reasons people think they should switch to crystal deodorant is that they believe mainstream products—namely, those anti-perspirant-deodorant combos—are bad for their health. Many articles and blog posts voice concern that aluminum and other chemicals found in these products could promote hormone-related cancers, including breast cancer.

Biologist Heather Patisaul, Ph.D. and professor of biology at North Carolina State University, explained to Time in 2016 that parabens, a preservative found in deodorant, may interfere with estrogen levels: “There’s estrogen-sensitive tissue in the breast, so the worry is that if you put parabens close to this tissue every day, they may promote the growth of cancer cells,” she said.

But the truth is, there’s no hard, scientific evidence to support the claims that antiperspirants cause cancer.

“Personally I have a family history of breast cancer and I use traditional antiperspirants,” says Erum Ilyas, MD, MBE, FAAD. “I have not seen convincing data to support trying other options. I have tried the natural products and find them to be unpredictable in terms of effectiveness.”

PeopleImagesGetty Images

Making the switch to crystal deodorant? Here’s what to know.

Agarwal recommends The Original Mineral Deodorant, which does a good job of eliminating odors. Even though it’s not an antiperspirant, she says some may find they actually sweat less because the mineral salts make the underarm area drier. You may need time to adjust to the wetness if you’re used to using a dry stick deodorant.

Agarwal recommends going a few days without traditional antiperspirant so you start fresh without residual aluminum on your skin. This will ensure you’re testing just the deodorant without the aide of your previous antiperspirant. Then, apply the crystal deodorant to clean armpits. If you think you need extra freshening, you can re-apply throughout the day.

If you’re really bent on going all-natural, Agarwal advises picking an unscented crystal deodorant, as certain fragrances have added chemicals.

“Avoiding scents is ideal for someone looking for a truly all-natural option,” she says.

The bottom line on crystal deodorant?

There’s no harm in switching to crystal deodorant—but remember, it’s not going to stop you from sweating. For that, you need an antiperspirant.

But there’s also no proven harm in sticking with your run-of-the-mill drugstore item. If you just can’t bear to part with that trusty Speed Stick, then…don’t.

Isadora Baum Isadora Baum is a freelance writer, certified health coach, and author of 5-Minute Energy.

Body Crystal

Company Information:

The Body Crystal™ range made its debut on the health and beauty market in 1993, and has since earned a reputation as a leader in crystal deodorants. The company began with a product line of fragrance free rocks, sticks, mists, and roll-ons. Subsequently, the company expanded its product offerings to include The Body Crystal Essentials range which builds on all the benefits of the traditionally fragrance free crystal deodorants with the addition of delightfully fresh fragrances. These are the perfect bridge between unscented crystal rock deodorant and mainstream (fragranced) deodorants. The Body Crystal Essentials range consists of 5 products, 3 fragranced mist sprays and 2 fragranced Roll-ons.

The company’s newest additions are the Botanica Mist and Botanica Roll-On Deodorants which have the added benefit of being formulated with Aloe Vera Extract. Aloe Vera is well known for its soothing and calming effects and as such is a perfect ingredient for use in skin care products. Aloe’s beneficial properties make it ideally suited for use in products intended to treat dry, itchy, irritated skin. It is an excellent remedy for chaffed underarm areas. As an added bonus, along with the natural moisturising capability of aloe, it has antiseptic properties that act against bacteria and unpleasant odours.

Frequently Asked Questions:

  1. 1. How do The Body Crystal Deodorants Work? Body and foot odour is a result of perspiration moisture coming into contact with bacteria on your skin. Sweat itself is a natural process to cool your body which is partly why we should not stop sweating altogether. However problem odour areas develop when the sweat comes into contact with bacteria which causes body odour. By preventing bacteria from forming you eliminate body odour. Quite simply, this is how The Body Crystal™ works. The crystal leaves an invisible shield of mineral salts, which stay on the skin and stop odour causing bacteria from developing. It is true odour prevention! It lets your skin breath and does not inhibit normal perspiration.
  2. 2. Are Body Crystal Deodorants Antiperspirants? No. Although the active ingredient in The Body Crystal™ deodorants is well documented as an astringent, meaning that it will gently tighten the skin pores with a drying effect, The Body Crystal™ does not inhibit normal perspiration. Antiperspirant deodorants have aluminum chlorohydrate or aluminum zirconium in them, which physically blocks or clogs the skins pores to reduce the flow of sweat. This is how antiperspirants work – they prevent the natural sweating process of your body by blocking the sweat glands.
  3. 3. Do Body Crystal Deodorants Contain Aluminum? Crystal deodorants are made from a mineral salt generally termed alum, which does contain a naturally occurring aluminum salt. Alum is not the same as aluminum, and our products do not contain compounds such as aluminum chlorohydrate or aluminum zirconium compounds found in most antiperspirants. The Natural Mineral Salts used in Body Crystal Products work effectively to prevent body odour by forming an invisible topical surface film which inhibits and kills odour causing bacteria.

Shop with BuyOrganicsOnlinefor all your Body Crystal Products

Biork Plastic Free Potassium Crystal Deodorant Stick

  • Eco Gifts
    • Australian gifts
    • Gift Vouchers
    • Greeting Cards & Wrap
      • Recycled greeting cards
      • Kids cards
      • Birthday cards
      • Thank you cards
      • Love, friends, inspire
      • New baby cards
      • Wedding cards
      • Recycled wrapping paper
      • Twine
    • Gifts for kids
    • Gifts for babies & toddlers
    • Gifts for teens
    • Gifts for grown ups
    • Gifts for teachers
    • Gifts for Mum
    • Gifts for Dad
    • Family fun
    • Nature & animal lovers
    • Waste less gifts
    • Adventure & travel lovers
    • Vegans & vegetarians
    • Cooks & foodies
    • Gardening gifts
    • Beach lovers
    • Dog & cat lovers
    • Naturally beautiful
    • Relaxing
    • Stationery addict
    • Gifts under $15
    • Gifts under $25
    • Gifts under $40
    • Kits & Subscription Boxes
  • Lunch boxes
    • PlanetBox
      • Planetbox kits: Rover, Launch & Shuttle
      • Planetbox magnets, bags, bottles
    • Bento boxes
    • Kids lunch box
    • Stainless steel lunch box
    • Yumbox lunch box
    • Goodbyn lunch boxes
    • LunchBots
    • U Konserve
    • Go Green lunch box
    • Insulated food jars
    • Sandwich wrap & pouch
      • Beeswax food wraps
      • Lunch wraps
      • Sandwich bags
      • Reusable food pouches
    • Small containers
    • Glass lunch containers
    • Cooling Ice Packs
    • Cutlery & sporks
    • Insulated lunch bag
      • PackIt freezable lunch bag
      • SoYoung insulated bags
      • Fridge to Go Insulated Lunch Bags
  • Body & Beauty
    • Natural hair care
      • Shampoo bars
      • Natural shampoo
      • Natural hair colour
      • Natural styling products
    • Natural skin care
      • Facial moisturisers
      • Natural face cleanser
      • Toners & mists
      • Exfoliants & scrubs
      • Face masks & treatments
      • Eye creams
      • Balms, serums & oils
      • Certified organic skin care
    • Natural toothpaste toothbrush
    • Natural deodorant
    • Safety Razors
    • Natural sunscreen
    • Natural makeup
      • Eyes
      • Lipsticks and lip gloss
      • Foundation & mineral powders
      • Blush & bronzers
      • Makeup brushes & bags
      • Vegan makeup
      • Kids play makeup
      • Natural makeup remover
    • Natural body moisturisers
    • Menstrual cups, pads, tampons
    • Natural body care
      • Natural soaps & shower gels
      • Body scrubs
      • Bath salts & body oils
      • Detox products
      • Hand & foot care
      • Menstrual cup
      • Natural & organic perfume
      • Natural fake tan & hair removal
      • Body brushing
    • Aromatherapy & remedies
    • Natural lip balms
    • Natural mosquito repellent
    • Teenage skin care
    • Vegan skin care
    • Biome skin care ~ 100% plant, ocean & earth
    • Men’s skin care
      • Men’s face & shave
      • Men’s hair
      • Men’s body
    • Gift & travel packs
    • Samples
    • Palm Oil Free
      • Skin care
        • Face
        • Body
        • Scrubs
        • Lip care
      • Hair Care
        • Shampoo
        • Conditioner
        • Treatments & Serums
        • Hair Colour
      • Personal Care
        • Deodorant
        • Healing & Remedies
        • Sunscreen & Tanning
        • Repellents
        • Dental & Tooth Care
        • Intimate & Hair Removal
      • Cosmetics
        • Foundation, Concealer, Powder
        • Eyes
        • Lips
        • Cheeks
      • Scents & Oils
      • Bath & Shower
        • Bar & Liquid Soaps
        • Bathing & powder
      • Baby & Children Care
        • Balm, Cream, Oils
        • Bath & Hair Wash
        • Outdoor & Repellents
        • Pregnancy
      • Men’s
      • Cleaning
        • Dish Washing & Kitchen
        • Bathroom Cleaning
        • Laundry
        • Home care & candles
      • Pet Care
      • Gift & Sample Packs
  • Reusables
    • Zero Waste Body & Beauty
    • Reusable food wraps & covers
    • Reusable produce bags
    • Reusable bags
      • Shopping bags
      • Canvas & jute bags
    • Reusables at home
      • Food storage containers
      • Glass containers
      • Reusable pouches
      • Reusable ice block moulds
      • Stainless steel homewares
      • Ball Mason Jars
      • Reduce packaging waste
      • Onyx stainless steel
    • Reusable straws
      • Glass straws
      • Silicone drinking straws
      • Stainless steel straws
      • Bamboo straws
      • Bubble Tea Straws & Kits
    • Reusable cups
      • KeepCup
      • Stainless steel cup
      • Reusable coffee cup
      • Glass Coffee Cup
      • Ceramic Cups
    • Zero Waste
  • Water bottles
    • Water Bottles By Brand
      • Klean Kanteen
      • Cheeki water bottles
      • S’Well stainless steel bottles
      • Ecococoon water bottles
      • Lifefactory Glass
      • Bbbyo
      • Contigo water bottle
      • Full Circle glass
      • Thermos
      • Funtainer
      • Eco Vessel
      • SIGG
      • Camelbak water bottles
      • Not Just Bamboo
      • Pura Kiki
    • Glass water bottles
    • Bamboo water bottles
    • Stainless Steel Water Bottle
    • Kids water bottles
    • BPA free water bottle
    • Insulated Water Bottle (Thermos)
    • Water Bottle By Use
      • Sports bottles
      • Large water bottles
      • Infused water bottles
      • Kids drink bottles
      • Water filter bottle
      • Thermos Spare Parts
    • Bottle replacement parts & brushes
  • Plastic free
    • Plastic Free Skin Care
    • Plastic Free July Ideas
    • Plastic Free Bathroom
    • Plastic Free Kitchen
    • Plastic Free Takeaway
    • Plastic Free at Lunch
    • Plastic Free Grocery Shopping
    • Plastic Free Cleaning & Laundry
    • Baby & Kids Products
    • Plastic Free Packaging
    • Natural Bristle Brush
    • Food & Drink Storage
    • Plastic Free Bottles
    • No plastic touching food or drink
    • Home & Shopping
  • Slow Fashion
    • New In
    • Women
      • Tops & Tees
      • Pants
      • Skirts
      • Dresses
      • Jumpsuits
      • Jackets & Knits
      • Underwear
    • Men
    • Kids
    • Hosiery & Socks
    • Shoes
    • Jewellery
      • Earrings
      • Brooches
    • Accessories
      • Backpacks and Bags
      • Hats
    • Care
    • Books
    • By Brand
      • BeeKeeper Parade
      • Seaside Tones
      • Dorsu
      • Cor Clothes
      • Kowtow
      • Mosov Organic
      • Tasi Travels
      • Seagrass Design
      • Nya
      • Farn
      • Mighty Good Undies
      • Quillan
      • Torju
      • Terra Thread
      • Champ Co.
      • Ochre
      • Edie and Bill
      • Swedish Stockings
      • VEJA
      • Modibodi
  • Home & Outdoor
    • Biodegradable plastic bags
    • Water Purifier & Filters
    • Reduce Food Waste
    • Green cleaning
      • Laundry
      • Soap Nuts
      • Clothes pegs
      • Cleaning brushes & sponges
      • Bathroom cleaning products
      • Kitchen cleaning
      • Essential oils
      • Remove mould
      • Air freshener
    • Garden, pest, pet
      • Bokashi
      • Composting & Worm Farm
      • Vegetable & flower seeds
      • Gardening Tools
      • Green pet products
      • Non toxic pest control
      • Bees
    • Bathroom
      • Toiletry bag
      • Chlorine shower filters
    • Stationery & office
      • Diary calendar journal 2020
    • Books & magazines
      • Australian books
      • Environment books
      • Sustainable Living Books
      • Simple & Mindful Living
      • Human Rights & Social Justice
      • Travel & Adventure Books
      • Animals & nature
      • Organic Gardening Books
      • Healthy food books
      • Vegetarian & Vegan cookbook
      • Origami & Craft Books
      • Nature colouring books
      • Eco magazine
    • Organic cotton sheets
      • Organic cotton bed linen
      • Organature organic bed linen
      • Hemp-organic cotton bed linen
      • Quilt, pillow, protectors
      • Organic baby bedding
      • Mosquito nets
    • Fashion & craft
      • Organic underwear
      • Wood watches
      • Art & hand made
      • Bags, purses & wallets
      • Eco friendly jewellery
    • Entertain, Lighting, Decor
      • Catering & picnic ware
      • Beeswax candles
      • Vegan candles
      • Wooden photo frame
      • LED light bulbs
    • Kitchen
      • Non stick cookware
      • Wood cutting boards
      • Kitchenware
      • Toxin free kitchen reusables
      • Green baking
      • Vegetable spiralizer
      • Dehydrator
      • BPA free Plastic & Glass
      • Organic Coconut oil
      • Super foods
    • Outdoors & Travel
      • Travel health & clean water
      • Travel & Camping Supplies
      • Solar radio, charger, lamps
    • Aprons, tea towels and napkins
  • Food & Health
    • Palm oil free food & drinks
      • Vegan chocolate & food
      • Fair trade organic chocolate
      • Organic tea & coffee
      • Organic food
      • Hemp Food
      • Raw food
      • Kids Food
      • Inner Health & Beauty
    • Natural health
      • Allergy free
      • Heat pack & eye mask
      • Southern Cross Pottery Water Purifier
      • Charcoal products
      • Gut Health
  • Baby & Kids
    • Organic Cotton Baby Kids Clothes
    • Childrens organic skin care
    • Kids natural toothpaste
    • Nursing Supplies & Nappies
    • Organic baby
      • Organic Cot Sheets
      • Organic Baby Skin Care
      • Amber Teething Necklace
      • Safe soothers & teethers
      • Baby wraps
      • Baby feeding
      • Baby Comforter Toys
      • Natural baby books
    • Baby bottles
      • Glass baby bottles
      • Stainless steel baby bottle
      • Baby bottles – safe BPA free plastic
    • BPA free baby
      • Sippy cup
      • Glass baby food containers
    • Pregnancy body care
    • Educational Toys & Books
      • Australian toys & books
      • Wooden toys
      • Battery-free fun & puzzles
      • Origami, craft, notebooks
      • Colouring books
      • Lyra pencils & crayons
      • Nature & Discovery
      • Empowering books for girls and boys
      • Happy, Kind, Mindful Kids
    • Children’s environmental books
      • Best of Our Children’s Books
      • Children’s picture books about Sustainability
    • Back to school
      • Children’s bag tags
      • School bags
      • School notebooks
      • Natural head lice treatment
  • DIY
    • DIY Skin Care Ingredients
      • Liquids, Oils, Butters & Wax
      • Flowers, Herbs & Essential Oils
      • Clays, Salts & More Dry Ingredients
    • Packaging & Utensils
    • DIY Cleaning
    • Workshops
      • Events
      • Body & Hair Care
      • Cleaning & Home Care
      • Self Sufficiency, Traditional Crafts
      • Gold Coast Workshops
    • Make your own food
      • Kombucha
      • Fermenting food
      • Ice blocks Ice cream
      • Cheese, yoghurt, kefir, tofu
      • Beer and wine
    • DIY Kits
    • DIY Books
    • DIY Recipes
  • NEW
  • Save
    • Sale
    • Special Offers
  • About
    • SHOP BY BRAND
    • About Us
    • Stores
    • Strict Standards
    • About Palm Oil
    • The Whole Story
    • Shop by Values
  • Blog

Even though we swipe on a deodorant or antiperspirant daily, it’s one product that has a bum rap. Some people allege that the ingredients used in these sweat and stink stoppers are linked to problems like skin irritation and even serious health concerns like cancer.

That’s why, driven by the clean beauty trend, people are ditching traditional aluminum-based antiperspirants in favor of crystal deodorants, a natural alternative made of mineral salts.

But is the swap really necessary? We talked to a dermatologist to figure out how crystal deodorants work, if they’re any safer than antiperspirant, and what to know before you ditch your tried-and-true formula.

What is crystal deodorant, and how exactly does it work?

“Crystal deodorants use zeolite mineral salts, such as potassium alum or ammonium alum, which may have natural antimicrobial properties,” explains Suzanne Friedler, MD, board-certified dermatologist with Advanced Dermatology PC and clinical instructor of dermatology at Mount Sinai Medical Center. “These mineral salts slow down bacterial growth, which is responsible for odor,” she says.

The company that started it all, CRYSTAL, says that the inspiration came from a trip to France when the founder discovered that these mineral salts could be used as a top-notch deodorizer. You can buy their deodorants as a stone (yes, you smooth an actual stone onto your armpits) or as a stick, roll-on, or spray formula.

The benefit of a crystal rock deodorant is that it’s free of the ingredients that are often blamed for causing irritation, like parabens, phthalates, artificial dyes, and fragrances—a total win for those with sensitive, easily irritated skin.

So is crystal deodorant safer than antiperspirant?

The shift to natural deodorants stems from the fear of ingredients in traditional deodorants and antiperspirants. The problem lies in the parabens or aluminum, which have been blamed for disrupting hormones and thus, have been connected to certain cancers, particularly breast cancer.

The reality is that these claims are unfounded. “While parabens have been studied for a link with breast cancer, the FDA and the National Cancer Institute have stated that they do not believe that antiperspirants or deodorants are related to these cancers,” says Dr. Friedler.

Related Stories

Likewise, aluminum has also been linked to Alzheimer’s disease, something the Alzheimer’s Association calls a myth. “Few believe everyday sources of aluminum pose any threat,” their website states.

However, if you have ever experienced an underarm rash or stinging after using traditional deodorants and antiperspirants, then crystal deodorants may be worth a shot. (Still, everyone’s skin is different, and some users have reported an allergic reaction to crystal deodorants as well, often in the form of a rash.)

“Irritant and allergic reactions are always possible. However, crystal deodorants are considered lower risk because they don’t contain the most common allergens,” says Dr. Friedler.

Be warned: You may not want to use crystal deodorant if you sweat heavily, since there’s a difference between deodorants (which mask odor) and antiperspirants (which actually prevent you from sweating). “Regular antiperspirants contain aluminum chlorohydrate or aluminum zirconium, which act by blocking the eccrine (sweat) glands and preventing wetness,” says Dr. Friedler. Crystal deodorants will only help prevent odor; they’re not going to keep your armpits dry.

How to use crystal deodorant

Want to give it a whirl yourself? Keep these tips in mind before applying a crystal deodorant:

  • Apply to clean, slightly damp skin (ideally right after you bathe) to prevent odor-causing bacteria.
  • If you are using a rock (instead of a roll-on or stick) and your skin is not damp, be sure to wet the top of the rock before applying.
  • If you apply deodorant to other parts of your body, considering using one just for your armpits and another for other areas to minimize the spread of bacteria.
  • Stop using a crystal deodorant if irritation occurs. See your dermatologist if skin issues persist.

Crystal Mineral Unscented Deodorant Roll-On amazon.com $9.99 Crystal Body Deodorant Rock amazon.com $7.99 Crystal Rock Deodorant Unscented Stick amazon.com $6.89 Crystal Mineral Deodorant Spray, Vanilla Jasmine amazon.com $75.90

If you’re looking for an aluminum-free formula that’s stops stink, is less likely to irritate, but isn’t crystal, check out the highly-rated Kopari Deodorant and Native Coconut & Vanilla Deodorant, a paraben- and aluminum-free formula that’s newly available at Target. Smell well!

The bottom line: Crystal deodorant can be a good natural alternative if traditional aluminum-based deodorants and antiperspirants irritate your skin. They may only help prevent odor and won’t keep your armpits dry if you sweat heavily.

Jessica Migala Jessica Migala is a health writer specializing in general wellness, fitness, nutrition, and skincare, with work published in Women’s Health, Glamour, Health, Men’s Health, and more.

Crystal Deodorant Fragrance Free Stick, 40g

I love this stuff! I have been using this brand of deodorant for years. I haven’t put regular deodorant on my arms since 2013 (and I’m an active, sweaty male). So when local pharmacies stopped carrying the Crystal I got nervous. Thankfully I found this online.
Let me give you a run down of how this stuff works:
First, there is only one ingredient. Literally. It’s just a crystal. So no nasty chemicals, no additives, nothing. Even the fancy all natural deodorants like “Tom’s” can’t claim that.
Second, due to there being no chemicals or additives, it works differently. Instead of killing or neutralizing the smell, it blocks it. When you rub the crystal on your armpit it leaves an invisible coat of crystal. That invisible coat physically blocks the smell from being able to leave your armpit.
“But I’ve tried this and it doesn’t work!” That’s because you’re doing it wrong. Since you’re blocking and not neutralizing the smell, you need to cover quite a bit more area than you do with normal deodorant. Otherwise the smell will seep out the sides of your layer of crystal.
So here is what I do:
***First I extend the crystal all the way out.
***Next I wet the crystal, as directed by the package. But to be more specific, I quickly turn the faucet on and off. It doesn’t need a lot of water, just enough to get it to glide on your arm pit as opposed to having it be dragged.
***Then, with the crystal turned sideways, I proceed to cover the underside of my arm as if I was painting with a roller brush. I know the top of the crystal is rounded and that’s probably how the manufacturer intends you to use it. However, what did I say above? You need to cover a lot of area in crystal in order for it to be effective. The best way to do that is to turn it sideways with it fully extended so you can cover more area in fewer strokes.
***I then wet the crystal again and proceed to “paint” the other side.
***When I am done I dry the crystal before putting it away
Let me better explain the “painting” process. With the crystal all the way extended I hold it horizontally like a rolling paint brush. Then, if I am doing my right arm, I start a FULL INCH to the right of my arm pit. I then stroke it up to about FIVE INCHES above my arm pit, then back down to five inches below my arm pit. I then slowly move in toward my chest while still moving the crystal up and down in the described pattern until I get a FULL INCH to the left of my armpit. Yes, some of your chest will be covered. Yes, area outside of your arm pit will be covered. This is to prevent any rogue smells from escaping. The bigger the blanket, the harder it is to escape. Then, before I finish, I go back over just the arm pit area a few times for good measure. I then repeat this process on the other arm. If at any point the crystal gets too dry to smoothly move up and down your arm, then put some more water on it. However, don’t drown it in water as you don’t want to end up spreading nothing but water.
You’re probably thinking that it sounds like it takes a lot of time. You would be correct. It does take double, if not triple or quadruple the time to put on regular deodorant. But it’s totally worth it to avoid smearing nasty chemicals or additives on your pits every single day.
Over time the crystal will shrink as it’s gradually applied to your pits over days, weeks and months. Eventually it will fall out of the container. That’s okay. In fact, now it’s even easier to paint your arms! And you can still store it in the container. KEEP IN MIND though that the Crystal is fragile. If it’s dropped it will almost certainly chip if not totally break apart. I’ve never made it to the very end with a crystal. My clumsy self will drop and break it eventually. But it’s still worth it.
***VERY IMPORTANT***
The Crystal will not work well right away. You pits are used to years, decades of using crazy ass deodorant products. Look at it this way. Let’s say your skin never really gets dry so you never wear face lotion. Now let’s say for some reason you were convinced to start wearing lotion to slow down aging. After a few months of use if you don’t put lotion on, your face will be dry. That’s because you skin got accustomed to the lotion so it stopped producing as much oil. Same concept with deodorant. After years and decades of smearing gunk on them, your pits got used to sweating more so your body could push out all those nasty chemicals. Not using deodorant for one day isn’t going to change that. You need to use the Crystal for at least 2 weeks before your body will adjust to it. I’ve had many friends give up on the crystal because they were too impatient. But the ones who listened to me and waited it out haven’t looked back.
Give this stuff a shot. Your body will thank you.

The crystal deodorant reviews

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *