The Lime Experiment: A Single-Ingredient Natural Deodorant?

Lime deodorant || Have you heard that lime can be used as a single ingredient, natural deodorant? Let's put this rumor to the test and see if it works!


Have you heard that lime can be used as a single ingredient, natural deodorant? Let’s put this rumor to the test and see if it works!

So I recently embarked on a little week-long self-experiment: for a week straight, I used lime juice as a deodorant.

Man oh man, this was a risky experiment to conduct in the mid-summer heat! Luckily, it worked out rather well. But we’ll get to all that in a bit…

While I am head-over-heels in love with the DIY all-natural detoxifying deodorant (it keeps me odor-free naturally and pulls toxins from my skinΒ β€” what more could anyone ask for?), it’s been said that lime juice can be used as a natural deodorant and I’ve been very curious about whether or not this was true.


I juiced a lime, strained the pulp and seeds, and put the juice in a little glass spray bottle. I kept the bottle in the fridge and sprayed it on my underarms every morning for a week.

lime juice deodorant || Have you heard that lime can be used as a single ingredient, natural deodorant? Let's put this rumor to the test and see if it works!

The big conclusion: it worked! But..

Not as well as my other deodorant (I was a little stinky by bedtime which is not usually the case for me). But it did work.

So will I be making the switch to lime juice? Nope. I’m still very committed toΒ myΒ DIY all-natural detoxifying deodorant. (It’s amazing.)

But this may be an option for others who have a sensitivity to baking soda, cornstarch or arrowroot, common ingredients in many natural deodorants (both DIY and store-bought).

A word of caution before giving it a go:

  1. It can sting when applied immediately after shaving
  2. Lime juice and the sun react in such a way that can cause your skin to burn, so absolutely do not apply lime if you are planning on exposing this area of your body to the sun.


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  1. Lime juice can cause burns on the skin when exposed to sunlight. Just a word of warning, so that anyone interested in doing this is extra cautious when applying. Just make sure that any area exposed to sunlight is rinsed off thoroughly (i.e. hands, arms, surrounding skin).

  2. The baking soda/coconut oil formula burned my underarms too… the next day I put a layer of coconut oil on first and then the baking soda mix, worked like a charm! The next batch I might lessen the amount of baking soda.

  3. I read that if you have a reaction to the baking soda, your ph has been thrown outa whack and the best way to reset is use apple cider vinegar/water rinse first. I will give it a try.

  4. I’m in love with my one-ingredient Milk of Magnesia for a deodorant. I love it for several reasons:
    1) I can’t use the coconut oil & baking soda version because the baking soda seriously irritated my armpits
    2) The oil did cause some oily marks on my clothes
    3) Milk of Magnesia is incredibly cheap and readily available
    4) Just ONE ingredient! No mixing!
    5) Your body NEEDS magnesium and it’s more readily absorbed through the skin anyway
    6) It keeps me odor free all day (I live in hot, Cabo San Lucas, Mexico) and even into the next morning
    7) Doesn’t irritate my armpits at all, even after applying to freshly shaved armpits.

  5. My odor was so bad, i would not raise my arm in public so i tried lavilin, i had high hopes due to reviews on amazon but it did not work for me. i tried different natural deodorants, they would work for like a week and stop working for some reason. i’m currently rubbing lime under my armpits twice a day. and i’m loving it so far. Hope it lasts cos it’s cheap lol:)

  6. I’ll have to try Milk of Magnesia too! I had been using coconut oil/baking soda/arrowroot/teatree/lavender with success for months! And then all of a sudden I started getting in-grown hairs! So I tried lemon today (because we didn’t have lime in the fridge) and did a pretty risky first trial run at Bikram Yoga (a hot yoga) and it worked really well!

  7. She said it can irritate freshly shaved skin. Also remember about going into the sun. Some girls where I live we’re playing with fresh limes at the pool, having a tea party the juice dripped down their bodies and face and they were severely burned and made the national news. Don’t want that happening to your pits if you’re in a tank top or something! I might have to try this out. I just made your deodorant and am excited to try it! I used the Redmond Clay brand. I think I will check out your link for their prices and some arrowroot too. Thanks for all the great recipes and ideas.

  8. Lime does work, but unfortunately for me when it dries out my armpits smell like something along the lines of stale maple syrup. I prefer my body odor to that, but it was worth a try.

  9. Mag – how long did you try Lavilin for? Usually there is an adjustment period (I heard up to 3 weeks for some people). I almost gave up on it, but persevered and it’s been amazing. Wouldn’t ever think of switching!

  10. The lime has definitely worked for me, no odor what-so-ever. Deodorants have never been effective, at least not for me. I’ve tried Toms which is a natural deodorant and I would immediately smell. I’ve also made the my own deodorant with baking soda which definitely works but and it has turned my armpits dark and then it starts to peel and itch. The lime is great

  11. I am a man and have been using lemon juice or lime juice for over a year now. It is absolutely the best natural deodorant I have ever tried hand down. Both my daughters and my wife use it as well. I don’t understand this concern about exposure to sun light we have never had any problems. Just apply 3 or 4 drops of juice (its not the oil) to each arm pit let it dry and you are ready to go. If you shave it can sting slightly but you wont die. We just keep a cut lemon in the fridge and all of us use it.

  12. My mother and I use lemon and lime juice as deodorants as well! It’s the best! Thanks for sharing!

  13. I have used lime juice from time to time, my grandmother told me about this natural deodorant. I mainly have used it because I can not for the life of me find a deodorant that will clear my arm pit stains. Over the summer its so embarrassing to use any color other than black or white because I stain my arm pit with any other color shirt. Any suggestions other than lime juice?

  14. By “stains” do you mean your sweat? No natural deodorant will prevent you from sweating because antiperspirant is unnatural and very unhealthy. Sweat is natural! People need to embrace it. I’m sweaty. Whatever.

  15. I haven’t tried line but I have been using lemon for the last month and it works great. Just slice a piece, rub under your arms, and move alone. Works like a charm.

  16. So I’ve been doing the lime thing for about a week and am so glad…
    I’d got to the point where mens deodorant didn’t work for me, I’m a dancer and I just couldn’t interact with anyone once I’d danced coz the sweat was unreal. . .I figured I’ve nothing to lose…I’ve danced quit intensely on a couple of occasions and no problems…fresh and clean!!! I keep half a lime in the bathroom to top up as the day goes if need be but first thing and laSt thing at night is working well..

  17. There is no deodorant, not even a prescription strength that works on me! My armpits literally smell bad after a couple hours even after reapplying no matter what deodorant :/ I’ve been using lime for about half a year and it works great for me! I have found that its not as effective if i use it from a spray bottle, it works best if you cut lime in half & rub it directly on your pits! Last summer i went to Disney world and it kept me from not smelling bad. If you sweat more, it sonetimes may be necessary to reapply! It does sting for a bit after shaving but it’s well worth it! πŸ™‚

  18. FWIW: So, I use the lime whole. Personally, I think the peel has something to do with its overall effectiveness. I cut off the top, and use the fresh cut side and keep the rest of it in my fridge, marked so it does not get confused as edible. I store it cut side down, and slice a bit off as it gets dry/less than fresh. If you wipe the juice off your pits with a damp washcloth about a minute or two after applying, the sun irritation is non existent, and it still works for 24 hours for me. The lime can be used for almost a month, if it’s a big and juicy one.
    The citric acid acts as an astringent on the pores and even seems to keep me from sweating as much.

  19. Lime juice works better for me than most deodorants! I love it and have been using it for almost 2 years now

  20. I use corn starch baby powder with zinc. It helps keep me dry and the zinc keeps the order away. I use it all over my body.

  21. I am currently using lime now as my deodorant. After I shower in the morning, I rub half of the lime directly to my armpits. Works best for me however, after a couple of days my armpits would start itching. How can I stop the itching without having to discontinue using the lime as deodorant? Any thoughts?

  22. I’ve been using lime juice for a month now and it has worked wonderful. I do not remove the juice from the lime and I do not have any BO by the end of the day. In fact I feel fresh. Perhaps removing the juice from the lime and storing it in a bottle may alter the lime’s chemical structure causing you to have a bit of an odor. I feel that the lime has been better to me than deodorant. In fact I noticed using dodorant caused my under arms to smell a bit and makes me sweat rather than protect me from both.

  23. I figured by “stains”, she meant the discoloration on her arm pits- I have heard a few people refer to that as arm pit stains.
    I have been using the Lime for a few weeks now and it really seems to help. Tom’s brand turned my skin dark and made it peel badly. But Lime has been amazing. Obviously, it isn’t for everyone- Some people put down natural things because it didn’t work for them (or it wasn’t instant so they never tried it again), but it’s definitely worth trying.
    By the way- Why do people bother commenting on your article if they haven’t even read it? Her answer was not only in the post she came here for but a few people had already answered it in the comments section before she asked!

  24. Lime worked wonderfully for me for a week or two. There was no odor even after 24 hours. But now it has stopped working and has only a small deodorizing effect. Could it be that the bacteria grow resistant to it? Maybe one must cycle different remedies to keep that from happening, rather than use the same remedy over and over.

  25. I have been using a lime for months now. I, too, just apply directly from the lime. I take a lime, slice in half, and have my own deodorant and applicator all-in-one. In warmer temps, 75Β° and higher, I have noticed that reapplication may be necessary after about 10hours. So, I pop a lime in my purse if I have a long day.

  26. I ran out of deodorant yesterday, so I had extra limes in the fridge so I gave it a go… worked perfectly! No smell no odor… I was impressed! All i did was cut a piece of lime and squeeze the juice under my arms and let dry before I put my arms down. And voila!

  27. I tried it yesterday after a fresh shower; it’s amazing thus far. With a C-Section birth, I likewise, I applied it to the skin that I normally apply other components A. and P., and dry then apply organic Vitamin E. Oil.

  28. I’ve used limes, worked very well…..I mix it up every few days with different scents of peppermint oil and then Japanese cherry blossom oil, too. I love it!!!!

  29. I have been using lime for years. I cut a slice off a fresh lime and rub under my arms after a shower. It works amazing for me, and I don’t stink at the end of the day at all. I have used everything else you suggested here and fresh lime slices work the best for me. I have never sunburned my armpits either. Isn’t it amazing how very different we all are?