Ohhh lawdy, it’s hot out! Here in sunny Florida, we’ve been in the 90’s every day since like April or May, so you know what this means – Armpit Alert Code Red, people! This is not a drill!
For those of us who wisely shun “traditional” antiperspirants made by the Big Brand Names because they contain aluminum and other dangerous chemicals, we have a harder time squashing the stink because, let’s be honest, we’re human and our armpits simply smell by nature.
Nixing the chemicals and fighting the good fight with natural products is definitely the safest thing to do health-wise, but that doesn’t mean we want to walk around stinking either! And you know what? We don’t have to!
Let me pause to briefly explain that not only do I live in Florida, but I’ve also battled hyperhidrosis since my early teens (I’m 30 now). That’s a scary-looking word that just means your underarms produce ungodly amounts of moisture, even when you’re not sweating. (No joke, I could produce wet pit circles in a hoodie when this condition was in its heyday, around eighth grade.) Millions of people struggle with it, so it’s really, really common and nothing to be ashamed of (despite how embarrassing and frustrating it feels to have it).
Thankfully, as I hit my 20’s, my hyperhidrosis improved a ton. In my late 20’s, I made the switch away from antiperspirants, which sounds counter-intuitive, but getting away from aluminum ended up being a fantastic decision. I’ve seen even further improvement, to the point that I actually feel normal most days. (Though I’d venture a guess that eating cleaner and healthier played a role in the improvement too.)
To make the initial switch away from antiperspirants, I first used Tom’s of Maine Long-Lasting Deodorant. Still looking for an even stronger weapon, I later tried Old Spice Men’s Deodorant, as well as Arm & Hammer Essentials. Out of the three, Arm & Hammer worked the best and became my go-to, with my spare tube of Tom’s handy for days when I was just lazing around home. [Psst! If you’re about to make the switch, see my post for tips!]
Being aluminum-free is fantastic, so I have to give those three credit as being better choices, but they all still have some undesirable synthetic additives (like propylene glycol, Triclosan, fragrance, and tetrasodium EDTA), so taking a step cleaner was on my agenda.
Ever the frugal Franny that I am, I waited not-so-patiently to use through
all most of my remaining supply before I let myself graduate into one of the highly-rated, all-natural deodorants I’d been eyeing online. There I was, two and half years into being aluminum-free, ready to finally grace my pits with the best of the best – the Rolls-Royce of natural deodorants, if you will.
(I probably would’ve given in and ordered sooner, but I’m admittedly such an über cheap-ass about paying to ship things. Call me old-fashioned, but I love the immediate gratification of leaving a store with my bounty.)
The final coup de grâce came when I saw a brand new stockist get added to the list – my prey was in a super chic, natural beauty bar/apothecary shop (the Rosy Cheek) only 40 minutes from me, and better yet, our weekend plans would have us driving right past! It was time. It was decided. The deodorant would be mine. Oh yes, it would be mine.
Without further ado, I bought Fat and the Moon Deodorant Cream, $12 for a 2-ounce jar. Not only does this product boast an average 5-star rating (with over 6,000 reviews!) on Etsy, but the whole vibe of FATM is just totally me. Match made in heaven. The website is a funky hippie haven, and I totally dig the glass jar packaging and label artwork.
This probably makes me a crazy person, but I was pumped to actually hold this little jar in my hand after ogling it online for almost a year. I was even more excited to finally give it a try, and I’ve gotta say, I’m thrilled to be able to share it with all of you.
Time for some #realtalk. This deodorant is about as freaking natural as it gets, and the ingredients are tweaked to utter perfection. Witchcraft, I say! It contains:
Coconut Oil*, Baking Soda, Arrowroot Starch*, Beeswax, and Essential Oils of Black Pepper*, Clary Sage*, Bergamot*, Tea Tree*, & Grapefruit*. (The * denotes organic, FYI.)
All of these ingredients are spot-on, a total powerhouse for fighting the two main causes of stinky pits: moisture and bacteria. Folks, controlling those factors is how you win the battle and the war!
For anyone with pits that freak out from baking soda, fear not! FATM also has Sensitive Pit Cream, which is baking soda-free, with a slightly different ingredient formula. [Heads up! Many people report their baking soda issues going away after doing a Bentonite clay armpit mask! Check out my post on Bentonite clay here!]
One of the first things you may notice? The 2-ounce jar size. Don’t judge a book by its cover though – remember, most tubes of any given store-bought deodorant are usually right around that size, so don’t let the different shape of packaging throw you.
The instructions say, “Warm a bit in your fingers and apply to your pits,” and “a bit” really does mean just a bit, folks. Just to show you, the amount on my finger in this pic is enough for one pit. That’s it. Not to be cliché, but a little goes a long way. [**UPDATE** This same 2 oz. jar lasted me an impressive eight months! Cheers!]
This product is smooth and silky, and you can cover every single nook and cranny of your pits easily. It absorbs quickly and doesn’t leave that “need to air-dry” feeling (trust me, been there – I once sampled a homemade natural deodorant that was just a mushy, greasy disaster, and made my pits feel gooey). With FATM, you can immediately put your arms down and continue on with your day, and won’t get streaks on your clothes.
How does it smell? Personally, I love it. Everyone’s nose is different, but my sniffer picks up most on the essential oil of black pepper, followed by the tea tree oil scent. (My face wash contains tea tree oil, so that scent is my jam!) I’ve been away from Big Name Brand artificially-scented nonsense for so long, that I don’t need my pits to smell like “Caribbean sunset” or “enchanted garden” (eye roll). If FATM is your first rodeo in Natural Land, you may have a little adjusting to do scent-wise, but it’s worth it, I promise.
That brings us to what we all came for, the main event! Ding ding ding! FATM Deodorant Cream is made with stellar ingredients, comes in a cute-as-can-be container, smells great, and applies smoothly, but…does it work?
I always like to play scientist, so please enjoy my highly-unofficial test results. Test Conditions: Product was applied to freshly-shaven, freshly-showered, dry pits. Test Environment: Sunny Florida summer day, 93º with heat index of 104º. Test Location: Mainly 1) around my home, in A/C climate of 78ºF, doing everyday chores, but 2) interspersed with mild outdoor activity throughout the day that was cause enough to break a general sweat (e.g., going to and from the store/my car carrying bags, getting in a hot car, taking the dog out, walking the 120 ft. or so in the sun to/from the sauna we call a laundry center while carrying my full basket).
Before I go on with my review, I want to note again the fact that I’ve still got mild hyperhidrosis, so in total fairness to this product, I don’t think anything will ever result in my pits being “bone dry” per se, even if I were chillin’ in an igloo, eating a popsicle. My pits are afflicted to different degrees – if 10 is the worst (picture eighth grade me), I’d say that currently my right pit is usually about a 4, while my left is a 2. (Granted, if you catch me on any hormonal day(s) of the month, you can add 1 to 2 points to each score.)
That being the case, I was impressed that this product kept my left pit almost completely dry and my right pit with very little moisture, even during the times I was outside long enough to sweat (T > 1 minute). Any moisture that did manage to crop up simply smelled like pepper water. (Yeah, ok, I’m admitting that I touched it and sniffed my finger. This is science, people!) During the times that I was inside in the A/C, lefty was moisture-free, and righty had very, very minimal amounts.
I did a sniff test at the 6-, 12-, and 24-hour marks. No reapplying whatsoever – that would’ve been cheating! My findings:
- 6 Hours: Found absolutely no B.O. whatsoever. Going steady! The scent of the deodorant was still intact, just not quite as strong.
- 12 Hours: Righty started to have a teensy bit of noticeable smell, not a big deal. My nose was literally in my pit, but I don’t think anyone else would smell it. Lefty was still basically odorless. The scent of the deodorant itself began wearing off.
- 24 Hours: (After an entire day and a full night’s sleep.) Deodorant’s scent gone. Righty definitely had a smell, though it was subdued and not nearly as strong as this pit is capable of. I’d vote Not Passable in Public as-is, but just by a hair. Lefty had a very mild, barely-there odor – still absolutely passable in public. Surprisingly, the moisture levels were still very much under control for both pits! Even after this long, it really seems the deodorant is still working to some degree!
All in all? Outstanding performance. I happily give this product a solid 5-star rating! If it can perform this well on a Floridian with hyperhidrosis, imagine what it can do for you! No doubt, this deodorant can get you through your day stink-free with ease.
The sign of a great natural deodorant is the confidence and freedom to not worry about whether it’s working, to not have to self-consciously wonder how you smell. You want great bang for your buck, and a healthy, safe product to boot. Right?!
Well, FATM Deodorant Cream accomplishes all that and then some. A natural deodorant this great is a wonder to behold, so I’m thrilled to now have it in my arsenal. My only regret is that I didn’t buy it sooner!
(By the way, if you have any concern about getting through your day stink-free, FATM also sells purse-friendly, 0.5-ounce mini tins of both types of deodorant cream for $4, which would make quick, on-the-go touch-ups super easy.)
Please keep in mind, I’ve already been away from aluminum for way over two years. If you’re currently using an antiperspirant, a pit detox period is inevitable when you first switch, no matter which deodorant you switch to. Check out my post, Going Aluminum-Free: A Survival Guide for what to expect, along with some tips!
Curious if any brick-and-mortar shops near you carry Fat and the Moon products? Check here for a list of stockists. (If you’re in FL anywhere near St.Augustine, be sure to swing into The Rosy Cheek – lots of great products!)
Before I wrap this up, I wouldn’t be doing FATM full justice by only mentioning the deodorant products! FATM literally has everything – their website is an absolute natural product H-E-A-V-E-N. You’ve got first-aid products like Sore Muscle Salve and Cold Sore Kicker. You’ve got skincare items like Light as a Featha’ Cleanser and Pimple Mud. You’ve got mom and baby products like Babies Moon Salve and Belly Balm. There are even makeup tints for lips, cheeks, and eyes. Alright, go on, go browse and drool now.
Wishing you healthier, happier (and less stinky) days!