Tom’s of Maine’s Natural Deodorant: To Stink or Not to Stink?


Not too long ago, I wrote about my favorite natural deodorants. I was lucky enough to test out the best of the natural and/or organic sprays, the roll-ons, and the sticks that the world has to offer. Some deodorants worked harder than an actress pretending she hasn’t injected her 40-something face with so many fillers that she looks like she’s about to float away. (Don’t speak Hollywood? In other words – badly and without success.) Other deodorants worked great – as long as you remained motionless into a climate-controlled environment, only daring to move your eyeballs. And the purveyor of some not-so-great deodorants? They came from the old toothpaste-standby: Tom’s of Maine.

Don’t get me wrong. Tom’s of Maine is a fantastic company, with certifications ranging from Peta-approval to an endorsement from the American Dental Association. They have a vigilant company-wide policy of recycling and they are 100 percent transparent. But their deodorant? It’s never worked for me. Nor for friends. Nor for my mail carrier – I suppose, if I were to ask her.

But my lack of luck with Tom’s of Maine changed one warm winter’s day in southern California. I was attending a natural products expo when one of TOMs reps handed me a sample of their latest deodorant, Crystal Confidence. This product promised to rid its wearer of an unfortunate body smell while remaining natural and less toxic than other brands.


The TOMs rep even winked that Crystal Confidence would stop wetness, something no organic or natural deodorant I know of has ever been able to do. And for good reason: anti-perspirants contain aluminum zirconium, which some link to Alzheimer’s Disease. And when it is not possibly messing with your brain, it prevents you from sweating – something you’re supposed to do. While I’m not a fan of the sticky underarms, it is hard to argue with evolution. No truly natural or organic product would contain aluminum zirconium. I was skeptical – what next, lasting organic lipstick? But I decided to try it out for myself.

Crystal Confidence had a nice, citrus smell that was pleasant enough. And it does work. Does it cure wetness? No, not at all. However, I was unable to find any evidence that it claims to do so on their web site, so perhaps I imagined this declaration from the TOMs rep. However, I did remain stinky free. And this is fairly significant in the world of natural deodorants.

Tom’s of Maine has a lot to say about Crystal Confidence. According to TOMs, “the antimicrobial actions of potassium alum and zinc citrate mineral salts fight odor.” (Check!) “It is long-lasting 100 percent natural and organic fragrances.” (Seems so!) “Goes on clear with no white residue” (Yes, it does!) Further, it “contains natural benzoic acid preservative. No parabens, phenoxyethanol, or propylene glycol.” (I am taking your word for it, TOMs.) To which I say – well done, Tom’s of Maine! You are finally out of the stink zone.

Finally, want to make your own deodorant? Here’s a cool recipe which will help you do just that.

Katherine Butler

Katherine Butler is the Beauty Editor of EcoSalon and currently resides in Los Angeles, California.