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Best deodorant for sensitive skin

Which deodorants for sensitive skin are best?

When you have sensitive skin, even products that seem harmless can trigger a reaction. You might not think about the skin under your arms as particularly delicate, but the ingredients most deodorants use to keep you smelling fresh all day can irritate your armpits, causing uncomfortable redness and itching.

That doesn’t mean you have to skip deodorant if you have sensitive skin, though. If you choose a formula free of the most common irritants in conventional deodorants, you’re much less likely to trigger a reaction. The trick is finding a gentle deodorant that’s still tough enough to control body odor. 

What makes a deodorant good for sensitive skin? 

The skin under the arms is extremely thin, so it’s pretty easy to irritate. It’s also prone to bacteria growth because of the warmth and moisture. If you don’t want your deodorant to leave you with red, itchy underarms, keep an eye out for some of the most widely used ingredients for stopping sweat and odor, because they’re known to irritate sensitive skin.

  • Aluminum is often used in deodorants to block sweat ducts and prevent moisture from developing. It can be irritating for sensitive skin, so aluminum-free formulas or deodorants that use a gentler form of aluminum are your best bet. 
  • Alcohol: Plenty of deodorants contain alcohol, which helps them dry quickly but can be highly irritating because they dry out the skin. Alcohol-free formulas are usually much gentler. 
  • Synthetic fragrances: Most deodorants contain these, because they work to mask body odor. They're among the most irritating ingredients for sensitive skin, though, so  choose an unscented deodorant or one that uses a natural fragrance.  

Best deodorants for sensitive skin

Vichy 24-Hour Dry-Touch Deodorant

This aluminum-free deodorant doesn’t contain any alcohol, either, so it helps minimize odor without irritating even sensitive skin. It offers protection for up to 24 hours during moderate activity and doesn’t leave behind any visible residue.

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Dove Men + Care Sensitive Shield Dry Spray Antiperspirant 

For those who prefer the convenience of spray deodorant, this highly moisturizing formula helps protect the skin against irritation. Unlike other spray deodorants, it doesn’t contain any alcohol to dry out the skin. It offers up to 48 hours of sweat and odor protection and dries instantly for a more comfortable feel.

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Necessaire The Deodorant

This deodorant doesn’t contain any aluminum, baking soda or artificial fragrances, so it’s gentle enough for sensitive skin. It contains natural acids to control odor, a multi-mineral complex to soothe the skin and essential oils for fragrance. The formula is vegan and cruelty-free and comes in recyclable packaging.

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Schmidt’s Aluminum Free Natural Deodorant

This plant-based deodorant doesn’t contain aluminum or baking soda, so it’s safe for sensitive skin. It takes just one or two swipes to provide odor protection that lasts all day. Its ingredients are of certified natural origin, and it uses hemp seed oil and patchouli for an earthy scent.

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Almay Sensitive Skin Clear Gel Antiperspirant and Deodorant

Gentle and hypoallergenic, this fragrance- and alcohol-free deodorant can provide all-day protection that won’t irritate sensitive skin. The gel dries quickly without leaving behind any white residue, so you don’t have to worry about marks on your clothing. It’s dermatologist- and allergy-tested, too.

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Vanicream Clinical Strength Antiperspirant Deodorant for Sensitive Skin

This deodorant doesn’t contain any dyes, artificial fragrances, parabens, formaldehyde or other preservatives, making it excellent for sensitive skin. It’s still a clinical-strength formula, though, and can keep you smelling fresh for up to 24 hours.

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Crystal Mineral Deodorant Stick

This natural mineral salt deodorant doesn’t contain any aluminum, parabens, phthalates or other potentially harmful chemicals. It creates a natural barrier against odor-causing bacteria to keep you smelling fresh all day. It’s unscented and hypoallergenic, and there’s no sticky residue that might stain your clothing.

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Native Deodorant

This cruelty-free deodorant doesn’t contain aluminum, talc, parabens or phthalates. Instead, it uses naturally derived ingredients to neutralize odor-causing bacteria and keep you smelling great. It can last for up to 16 hours, through even the most challenging workouts.

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Drunk Elephant Sweet Pitti Deodorant Cream

This unique cream deodorant is highly effective for soothing irritated underarm skin, thanks to the included shea butter. It also uses mandelic acid to help keep odor at bay throughout the day. It doesn’t contain any sulfates, essential oils, fragrances, dyes, silicones or alcohol.

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Sam’s Natural Deodorant

This potent long-lasting deodorant is free of harsh chemicals, including aluminum, parabens and phthalates. Instead, it uses natural ingredients including baking soda, coconut oil and arrowroot powder to fight odor, wetness and bacteria growth. The formula is also certified vegan and cruelty-free and comes in a recyclable tube.

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Corpus Natural Deodorant

This highly effective all-natural deodorant is gentle enough for even the most sensitive armpits. The water-based formula uses vegan ingredients to keep you smelling great all day and is available in three natural scents. The stick glides over the skin but doesn't leave behind any messy residue.

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Megababe Beachy Pits Daily Deodorant

Featuring natural sage and green tea, this gentle deodorant doesn’t contain any aluminum, alcohol or parabens, so it’s safe for daily use on sensitive skin. You don’t have to worry about your clothing getting stained, either, because it doesn’t leave a white residue on the skin. It has a natural rose scent. 

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DermaDoctor Total Nonscents Ultra-Gentle Brightening Antiperspirant

If you’re struggling with underarm discoloration, this gentle deodorant can help brighten your skin while fighting odor and wetness. It’s dermatologist- and allergy-tested and doesn’t contain any dyes or fragrances. The formula is also cruelty-free.

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Jennifer Blair is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money.

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