Where would we be without deodorant? The world would be a lot more, um, pungent, if we didn't have it in our lives. And while it's a necessity for most people, for some with sensitive skin, it can also be an annoyance. If you have sensitive skin, you might experience irritation, bumps, and dryness—no smell, but discomfort in the pit area. What's the lesser of the two evils?
Well, we're here to tell you that you don't have to choose. You can have your deodorant and enjoy irritant-free armpit skin, too. There's a wide variety of deodorants that are formulated for sensitive skin. That means a lot of them are free of usual irritants such as fragrances, aluminum, alcohol, and other chemicals (like parabens)—some things you may want to avoid when you're looking at the ingredient labels.
Need some recommendations? We've rounded up some of our favorites below.
This natural deodorant is made with hops (yes, like the stuff in IPAs), aloe vera, baking soda, kaolin, and eucalyptus. It's long-lasting and has a fresh feel when you apply it. One Dermstore reviewer wrote, "I'm so happy I found this deodorant because I have really sensitive skin and it’s hard to find deodorants that don’t irritate me or give me a rash (I haven't figured out why that happens) and I prefer using natural deodorants and this works so well!! It lasts all day and does a good job of preventing and masking odor."
I used Vanicream's moisturizing cream, and it's so gentle on my sensitive skin. The brand's deodorant is similar—it doesn't have dyes, fragrance, lanolin, parabens, formaldehyde, and other preservatives. One Amazon reviewer wrote, "I have recently developed an allergy to aluminum that is in most deodorants and this deodorant doesn't irritate me at all! The texture of the Vanicream has a gel texture and it is wet when applied. This does dry rather quickly (a few min.) which I like so I don't feel wet all day and I don't smell at all."
You know Dove's deodorants get the job done—and with over 1000 reviews and 4.6 stars on Walmart, the sensitive formula comes highly recommended. It's unscented, contains no alcohol so you won't feel irritated after shaving, and lasts for 48 hours. One review said, "My underarms use to break out all the time especially after shaving so I switched to the Dove Sensitive and no more problems there."
If you opt for this roll-on, you'll be happy to know it has an alcohol-free formula and doesn't contain sulfates or phthalates. One Sephora reviewer wrote, "I LOVE this deodorant!! I have extremely sensitive skin, I get eczema in my pits and I have hyperhidrosis. I usually excessively sweat, but not with this deodorant! It's so gentle, but so so so effective! I highly recommend."
Native's deodorants are free of aluminum, parabens, phthalates, and talc. They come in various scents like lavender and rose, eucalyptus and mint, and coconut and vanilla. One Amazon reviewer wrote, "I have sensitive skin and I HATE 90% of all scented products (and 99% of coconut-scented products), but I would marry Native deodorant. I can sweat for hours and emerge smelling faintly delicious. At first I balked at the price, but it's so worth it."
This natural deodorant is made with natural minerals and scented with essential oils, so you get a nice scent without the chemicals. It also doesn't contain aluminum, parabens, or phthalates. One Amazon review reads, "This is an awesome natural deodorant that's great for sensitive skin. I'm pretty much allergic to all fake scented things so I look for the most natural scents I can find. I love this one because it’s not too strong, not too subtle. It's literally just right."
Different from a stick or a cream, this Vichy deodorant is a cream formula that's made for sensitive skin. It doesn't contain fragrance or parabens. One Dermstore customer left a review with one caveat: "I love Vichy products and this is no exception. This is not going to help you with 'stress' sweat, so maybe not the best for special events or presentations."
The hypoallergenic gel formula is fragrance-free and works all day. One Walmart reviewer wrote, "I LOVE this deodorant! I have sensitive skin but since I gave birth to my daughter, my hormones changed, and skin sensitivity has increased. I've had to hunt for a new deodorant that won't irritate my skin, and that hunt is FINALLY over!"
Specially formulated for sensitive skin, this natural deodorant doesn't contain baking soda and is scented from essential oils. It's also aluminum-, paraben-, sulfate-, and plastic packaging–free. One Amazon reviewer said, "This is a great natural deodorant! I should know, I’ve tried about a dozen. My skin is very sensitive and every one has given me painful rashes until this one. It goes on very easily and I like spreading it on evenly with my fingers. It’s dry as it goes on so no waiting time."
This article is provided for informational purposes only and is not intended to be used in the place of advice of your physician or other medical professionals. You should always consult with your doctor or healthcare provider first with any health-related questions. See our full health disclaimer here.