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The 7 Best Cruelty-Free Deodorants That Actually Work

by Suzana Rose

Feb 5, 2021

Ever since I've stopped using aluminum deodorant, I've been on a quest for the best cruelty-free deodorant. Some people don't sweat a lot and are therefore happy with just a tiny bit of odor protection. Not me! If I'm just hanging out around the house or if I'm not doing much that day, then maybe. But if it's hot, if I have to move around or exercise, or if we're in the middle of summer, I need a deodorant that's super effective!

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The following deodorants have been my favorites for a while, and they're a part of that whole spectrum. I've rated them on a scale of 1 to 4, 1 being "just chilling around the house" and 4 being "hip hop abs workout in the desert".

1. Just Chillin' Around The House: Meow Meow Tweet

I love that Meow Meow Tweet is extra-focused on sustainability and they're also 100% vegan. Although they offer some deodorants with baking soda, I'm recommending their "baking soda free" version to chill around the house. Why wear irritating baking soda every single day if you don't really have to?

This deodorant comes in a glass jar with an aluminum lid, meaning it's completely plastic-free. You can reuse the jar when you're done or recycle it easily.

The deodorant itself is easy too apply and smooth. As with all glass jar deos, you do have to apply it with your hands, which is really no biggie. I love the Grapefruit scent, though it also comes in Lavendar.

2. Running For Errands: JASON

JASON is widely available in stores, and it's one of the most budget-friendly deodorant I've found. You can also often find it at Marshalls, TJ Maxx, or Winners. It comes in a traditional stick format, so if you don't like dipping your fingers in a pot, this one might be a better option. Of course, the trade-off is that it's not so eco-friendly.

While it's not the best cruelty-free deodorant out there, it offers decent "medium" protection and it does contain some baking soda. They have several really nice scents such as Apricot. I like this one because it feels more like a traditional deodorant, and using it is a breeze.

3. Busy Day At Work: Little Seed Farm, Coconut Matter, Lovefresh

For this one, I'm sharing my top 3 cruelty-free deodorants that are effective yet natural. None of these contain aluminum and they're not antiperspirants, yet they offer really good protection and will last all day.

The first one is from Little Seed Farm, and it comes in a glass jar just like the Meow Meow Tweet one above. However, even though it doesn't contain baking soda, it contains activated charcoal and is very effective at keeping odors at bay.

This brand is also made on a sustainable solar-powered farm in the USA. They're Leaping Bunny certified, but keep in mind this product is not vegan as it contains beeswax.

The next one on the list is from Coconut Matter. I love it because it's super effective, doesn't contain baking soda, and it's also 100% plastic-free and biodegradable, yet in comes in a stick that makes it easy to use. The downside is that this is one of the pricier deodorants on the market, as it comes in a very small 1oz container.

Next, another favorite of mine is Lovefresh. They currently offer a plastic stick version, a glass jar version (unfortunately with a plastic lid) and a cardboard stick version that's 100% plastic-free.

It contains baking soda, however it has never irritated me. I love this one because of the smooth, creamy consistency, and the pleasant application experience. It's also very effective and lasts all day on me. If you're a fan of roses, I recommend the Moroccan Rose scent, though I've tried several and they're all wonderful.

4. Hip Hop Abs Workout In The Desert: CertainDri, Tom's of Maine Antiperspirant

If you need extra-strength clinical protection, I've got you covered! There's a cruelty-free deodorant for you. This is where the antiperspirants come in, and I found two options that aren't tested on animals.

The first one is CertainDri (buy on Amazon), which is widely available in stores. You'll probably find it at your local grocery store or drugstore. CertainDri contains both Aliminum Chloride and baking soda to keep you "dry".

The second one is Tom's of Maine. Tom's of Maine offers many deodorants, many of which are aluminum-free. If you're looking for the "strong stuff", make sure to choose the one that's marked antiperspirant. It's available in the Coconut Lavender scent (buy on Amazon).

In Conclusion

I hope you were able to find a cruelty-free deodorant tailored to you needs, and I hope these deodorants will work for you as well. Please keep in mind that this is based on my personal experience with the products, and we're all different when it comes to deodorant.

Let us know in the comments if you have any favorite cruelty-free deodorants to share!

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Suzana Rose

Suzana Rose

I created Cruelty-Free Kitty because animal testing has no place in the 21st century. My mission is to tackle ethical issues in the beauty industry one by one and find solutions for a better future.

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  • Avatar Damaris Martínez says:

    Im so glad that someone like you is making a huge change . i’m genuinely very grateful , thank you ! Also quick question do you have your page in different languages as well ? I personally think it’d be great to have different people from around the world have the option to read all of these amazing cruelty free brands .

  • Avatar Kelly McGrath says:

    Hi, Just letting you know Tom’s of Maine deodorant is owned by Colgate they bought it in 2006 and Colgate is not cruelty free. xx

  • Avatar Nina says:

    I started with Real Purity, but it is so expensive and not available in stores so I switched to Kiss My Face Sport to tame my menopause stink.

  • Avatar Susan Stein says:

    I used to use Schmidt’s but they were bought out Unilever. I now use Piper Wai, It’s cruelty-free and vegan. It works for me & I have sensitive skin. It keeps me dry & odor-free.

  • Avatar Susan Stein says:

    I recently tried Piper Wai. I love it. It’s cruelty-free & vegan. It works for me. I have sensitive skin it keeps me dry & odor-free without irritating my underarms. I switched from Schmidts because Unilever bought them out.

  • Native list on their site to be Cruelty Free

  • Avatar Lisa says:

    What about Native deodorants?? Soaps??

  • Avatar Lisa says:

    what about Native deodorants? Soaps?

  • Avatar Wendy Richardson says:

    I just read your articles on who owns who and I’m wondering do you still support the use of Schmidts even though it’s now owned by Unilever? Also I am super thankful for you and your crazy research to help us make informed decisions! I take your lists with me when I go shopping!

  • Avatar Viktorija says:

    Is Sanex a cruelty free brand?

  • Avatar Dawn says:

    PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE consider Jack Black Pit Boss..Yea it can be found in the boys side of the isle but when I used it I just felt like was getting a big hug from my Hubby…and when I put some clothes on the mild hunky scent went away…And they are cruelty free. It is a phenomenal deodorant and antiperspirant combo….And …IT REALLY WORKS..all day long.

  • Avatar Ramona says:

    I tried Schmidt’s Charcoal deodorant. It was an absolute dream in terms of odor protection!!! I could even skip a shower the next day and still no odor!!! However, I had to give it up because I could no longer tolerate the wet pits. I teach and was continually embarrassed by the very visible wetness on my clothing.

  • Avatar Deb Gregory says:

    Do you have a recommendation for a good anti-perspirant/deodorant that is also unscented?

  • Avatar Jessie says:

    Are there any cruelty free deodorants other than Tom’s that are available at Walmart or Target? I’m on a very tight budget, so most of these are just too much to spend at a time, even if it lasts a long time. I also don’t have access to many other retailers as I live in a rural area, so other than ordering online, I don’t have many options.

    • Avatar Thatpolishdoll says:

      Primal Pit Paste is now being sold in my local Target! You can also find them online. Usually the reaction that most people experience is due to baking soda. Primal pit does offer a baking soda free option. I have tried a lot of natural brands and by far this one is the best. Even my teenage boys use it and it works for them!

  • Avatar amanda nic says:

    i LOVE the schmidt’s one! they have a stick form of it that’s cheaper as well. they sell them at target for around $4-5 and the rose one smells amazing!

  • Avatar Cait says:

    Hi There,

    Just wanted to stop by and mention that although Certain Dri is an amazingly effective antiperspirant, the company that owns them, Clarion Brands, is known to test on animals. Could you please update this blog entry to perhaps put a little * next to Certain Dri so that your readers know it’s manufactured by a parent company that does still test on animals? Love the work you do for your site, and love coming here as a resource, so I just want to make sure my fellow readers are all as informed as we can be!

  • Avatar selena says:

    I love crystal deodorant it smells amazing and its aluminum free witch is my favorite. I get mine from Burlington.

  • Avatar Natalie says:

    Have you checked in to Native Deodorant? It is a cruelty-free brand I use that has kept me smelling fresh all day! Although it is not an antiperspirant.

    • Avatar Lainey says:

      I have fallen in love with Native. I won’t use anything else now. Especially since they make the sensitive one without baking soda. They now make soap and body wash too.

      • Avatar Abby says:

        I know…I love the fact that it’s talc free, I just wish it was fragrance free since synthetic fragrance is really not a great idea for people who sweat in the underarms such as myself, aside from how irritating it sometimes is too my skin

  • Avatar Tiffany says:

    Are there any other cruelty free deodorants that contain aluminum?

  • Avatar Lee says:

    I purchased some Certain Dri antiperspirant from your recommendation and it works great! However, I am concerned about the product actually being cruelty free since there is no indication of it on the package anywhere. I contacted the company and received no response, which is usually not a good sign that the product is actually cruelty free. I trust your website as a great resource for many cruelty free products. So how did you learn, or have proven to you that Certain Dri is cruelty free?

  • Avatar Isabel says:

    Hi Suzi, thank you for this very useful guide.
    Since I was a teenager and began having changes in my body (LOL), I have always used antiperspirant because it kept me dry and odor free.
    Now that I’m an “adult” (LOLagain), I noticed that I don’t sweat as much as when I was an adolescent, and since I decided to make some changes in my lifestyle, I started to look for cruelty-free deodorants.
    I’ve been using Tom’s of Maine deodorant for a while and I feel it has worked well for me BUT, since it is only deodorant, at the end of the day I can perceive it’s not keeping me totally odor free. On top of that I excercise every day, so I need something stronger. Don’t get me wrong it’s not like I end up soaked in sweat and stinking, I just want to be as clean as possible.
    Also, with this Tom’s of Maine deodorant I noticed that my armpits are getting stains 🙁 so I would like to know if you have something you can recommend.

  • Avatar B Y says:

    I think Certain Dri/Clarion tests on animals now. It is no longer on the PETA list, and isn’t on the Leaping Bunny list either.

  • Avatar Lhvoyles says:

    Certain Dri is a miracle worker for people like me who got bad genetics and are unreasonably sweaty, even when not doing anything active. I am so glad it is cruelty free because it is the only thing that works. I use it at night then I use a natural deodorant during the day. I’m so glad to not to be smelly and gross by midday.

  • Avatar Rob says:

    Never heard about Certain Dry before. I’ll have to check it out!

  • Avatar Anonymous says:

    Another great cruelty-free, aluminum-free, and highly effective deodorant is Primal Pit Paste. I prefer the lavender-scented stick and my husband uses the unscented stick. You can find it at Whole Foods as well as online. Thanks for your website!

  • Avatar KittyCaretaker says:

    I know this post was from several years ago, but I’m just finding it. This is definitely a category of skin care that has been grossly neglected, though there are a few more options in the boutique brands than previously available, like the cute vegan Meow Meow Tweet one (which ‘Ladams’ mentioned, but I haven’t yet tried). https://meowmeowtweet.com/products/deodorant

    I recently read on the Vapour Beauty website a hint that they might be formulating a deodorant product of some sort. I really hope this is true because I love the ethos of the brand so much! Not only are they cruelty-free but they really know what’s going on from start to finish with every product they make (think I read somewhere that they do their own manufacturing). Plus, their products are anhydrous (waterless) formulations, thus no need for preservatives; they use recyclable aluminum packaging, not to mention that the stuff inside the packaging is some of the best oils and purest ingredients I’ve ever found in any skin care product. Basically their makeup is skin care with pigment! I love the smell of their stick creams, which comes from the quality organic ingredients, not added artificial fragrance!

    Super excited and that they’ll [hopefully] soon be making a deodorant product! Their products are a bit pricey but I do believe the quality and concentration of the ingredients make them last longer than other brands and are simply more beneficial to the skin. I just can’t say enough good things about this brand! I love that they offer samples for purchase, too. So, hopefully if they do eventually sell a deodorant, it will be available to try a sample.

    Does anyone else have a love for Vapour? (Sorry for the long comment. Got a little too excited! 😉

  • Avatar Cathy says:

    None are spray derodiant I can not use anything else. I would be happy to change from my dove if it was a the same price, quality and nutral cents. Which would be a hard because I buy mine from a discount store so I only pay $3 and no it is not one from asia it is either Australian or mainly english. All my products need to be on a budget so alternatives that are at the same cost,quality, quantities and last the same length of time or longer.

    • Avatar Kathryn says:

      You should try a brand called hippi pits. I live for their deodorant! The smell is subtle but the protection is legit. I waitress so I am running around a lot during my shift in and out of a hot kitchen. I was leery of the cost but I have had the same little pot of it for well over 8 months now and I’m still good for another 4-6! They are all natural and easy to apply, also cruelty free and aluminum free

  • Avatar Jelly says:

    Hi! I’ve been using a brand called Alvera! It’s an all natural brand deodorant and everything I’ve found online about it says it’s vegan and cruelty free. It’s a roll on and they have three different scents that I know of. I am in love with the aloe & almonds scent, it’s great and affordable! Can you look into it to ease my mind about it and make sure it truly is a cruelty free wonderful brand!?

  • Avatar Dawn says:

    I wanted a deodorant/antiperspirant and that seemed impossible to find..BUT I DID.. Jack Black..yea..may be a guy’s product line but I just imagine my self being hugged by a gorgeous firefighter off one of those calendars and all is sweet…and that nice man smell goes away soon so no big deal and it really works well!! I used to use Secret…

  • Avatar Alexandra Gomes says:

    Could you try Honestly pHresh deodorants? They look really good.

  • Awesome!! Just an FYI, I personally never use it right after shaving.

  • I hope you like it! That’s my favorite scent after trying them all!

  • Avatar Noelia says:

    I just want an antiperspirant that works and is cruelty-free. I don’t care if it has chemicals or if it’s vegan. I just want it to work. I’ve been trying CertainDri for 2 days now and while it does keep wetness away it doesn’t work well for the odor. what can uou suggest

    • Suzi Suzi says:

      Sorry it didn’t work for you. 🙁 Certain Dri is about the strongest cruelty-free deodorant there is, so I have no alternatives. What I do for extra odor protection is top my go-to deo with a powder deodorant from Lush.

    • Avatar Anon says:

      Certain dry is an antiperspirant only, meaning it only stops you from sweating, it won’t stop odor. You are suppose to use certain dry before bed (stops sweating for 72 hrs) then use whatever deodorant (natural or whatever smells good to you) in the morning!

    • Avatar Christy says:

      If it’s not vegan then it is NOT cruelty free. There’s no getting around that fact, and this entire website needs to update its standards to account for that.

      • Avatar Dawn says:

        Actually no, you are the one who is wrong in this case and you need to hold yourself accountable for the information you put out there instead of telling other people to be accountable. I hope you’ve don’t your due diligence, but in the event you have not, cruelty-free and vegan are not mutually exclusive/interchangeable. In fact, you can have a product that is vegan but also tested on animals, in this case, the product is not cruelty-free. Cruelty-free boils down to not testing a product on animals whereas vegan products do not contain animal byproducts. It is NOT the same thing. That’s why you need to look for both vegan and cruelty-free on your products otherwise you don’t know for certain if your vegan product is in fact cruelty-free. Why? Because they are not the same.

    • Avatar Dawn says:

      Try Jack Black Pit Boss..It’s both deodorant and antiperspirant so NO WETNESS AND NO ODOR!!!

      • Avatar Mike says:

        Yes, Jack Black Pit Boss is the only one that works for me to control odour all day. All other ones start to give out in a few hours and by the end of the day I smell like a used sauna.

    • Avatar Baylee David says:

      I have noticed this too. What I do is combine certain dry with another deodorant. I was using Dove but now I am no longer going to buy it because they test on animals. Certain Dri needs to be applied at night before bed as well as in the morning to work effectively. Only one or two swipes, otherwise it may burn and cause a rash and be itchy. I wait til that dries then I use another powder deodorant overtop of it for odor. It works like a charm.

  • Avatar JMcK says:

    The CertainDri says it contains aluminium. Is that the harmful form of aluminum?

  • Avatar Jessica says:

    I tried Tom’s, and it burned my armpits. Literally. Skin came off, and dark burn marks were everywhere. I live in the South, and the Tom’s also stopped working in minutes. I started to smell during low impact workouts (making them burning worse). Any tips for someone who needs something strong due to workouts and humidity?

    • Suzi Suzi says:

      Wow, that sounds awful. :/ Did you try finding out what ingredient caused that reaction? It’s hard to recommend an effective natural deodorant. I wouldn’t suggest using an antiperspirant like CertainDri every day. What I do is I sometimes layer natural deodorants when it gets too hot and humid. Crystal + Schmidt’s for example. Topping with powder will also help a little bit.

    • Avatar nathashaalvarez says:

      The same thing happened to me. I thought I had cancer!

    • Avatar cyphine says:

      Oh my goodness! The same thing happened to me with Tom’s nearly three decades ago! I guess their formula has not improved.

  • Avatar Ariana says:

    Does the Lush Aromaco keep you dry throughout the day? Thanks 🙂

    • Suzi Suzi says:

      What I do is I top it with a tiny bit of deodorant powder from Lush, and that really does keep me dry all day!

    • Avatar Ladams says:

      Meow meow tweet tweet is my fav.

      • Avatar KittyCaretaker says:

        Which scent do you use – the lavender or tee tree? Of all the essential oils, I’d say those are the two I really can’t stand, so I’ve been reticent to try this one, but I’ve read a lot of good things about it.

        I guess my question is: Does the smell of the lavender or tee tree linger? Thanks in advance for your help!

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