Vodka Is the Secret to This Powerful DIY Deodorant

It’s a sad truth—sometimes you don’t realize you forgot to put on deodorant until after you’ve already started sweating. Swiping a solid stick over that swampy mess isn’t ideal, especially since it’s likely bacteria has already started stewing.

The solution? Reach for a spray. Our easy DIY deodorant will keep you cool and dry, with no need to worry about aerosol cans or chemicals. No T-shirt–staining aluminum, butane, artificial fragrances, or toxic alcohols either.

But just because it’s natural doesn’t mean it doesn’t work. This is a super-simple, incredibly effective formula. Since sweat contains some lipids and proteins that feed the bacteria on your skin—the process that leads to funky odors—antifungal and antibacterial tea tree oil is added to keep the underarm area clean. Lavender contributes more antiseptic power, plus it softly dilutes the strong scent of tea tree.

The third ingredient is a surprising one, but it’s important for harnessing the properties of the oils: high-proof vodka. We know from chemistry class that oil and water don’t mix. A tiny bit of alcohol acts as an emulsifier—and the stronger it is the better the oil dissolution. (So, better break out the hard stuff.) This solution will help to evenly distribute the oil throughout the mixture once water is added. (While diffusing essential oils with water works fine in many cases, for bacteria- and odor-fighting, getting the maximum power out of the oils is best.)

Ready to try this super easy DIY deodorant spray?


½ ounce high-proof vodka
16 drops lavender oil
24 drops tea tree oil
3 ounces of water

Pour vodka into a glass spray bottle. Drop-in essential oils and swish the mixture well. Just add water, shake well, and spray!