Natural deodorant has become a very lucrative and extensive field of product exploration as consumers interest in artificial-free cosmetic products has dramatically increased. I recently reviewed Native deodorant and was interested how Schmidt’s Deodorant compares. Schmidt’s Natural Deodorant want founded in 2010 and claims to be the “first and only natural deodorant in the U.S. to be Certified Natural by leading global certified Ecocert.” Schmidt’s likes to take a stance that they are different from other deodorant brands by calling out the misuse of the word “natural” that many other cosmetic brands use, despite their lack of evidence to back it up. Schmidt’s distinguishes the words “truly natural” from “aluminum-free”, or “GMO-free”. They proud themselves on their Ecocert partnership and logo to show the consumers how they are “truly natural” compared to other brands claiming similar promises. Since Schmidt distinguishes themselves from others, consumers may blindly believe they are more sustainable. However, Ecocert is just another certification program created to greenwash and market products to people in search of natural or environmentally friendly.
Every Schmidt’s deodorant has a full list of ingredients using SmartLabel in order to assure full transparency to their customers. The ingredients include Magnesium Hydroxide, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, Maranta Arundinacea (Arrowroot) Powder, Butyrospermum Parkii(Shea) Butter, Fractionated Coconut oil, Baking Soda, Candelilla Wax, Natural Fragrance, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojaba) Esters, Vitamin E, Sunflower Derived (Beta-Sistosterol and Squalene). I appreciate that Schmidt’s includes the ingredients in a very transparent and detailed way providing both the scientific and common name as well as a description of what each ingredient is. Unfortunately, they do not have as much transparency when it comes to where they source these ingredients from. When compared to Native’s deodorant, Schmidt’s includes more ingredients, most notably Magnesium Hydroxide which is they claim aids in the absorption of perspiration and reduction of body odor. If consumed, Magnesium Hydroxide can cause nausea and other stomach issues, however, it is not absorbed by the skin so it is a safe option for deodorants. The different scents are added using essential oils. They also claim that all of their ingredients are plant based and “formulated to be gentle on the skin, using certified 100% natural origin ingredients.” They also pride themselves on their “Never List,” a list of products that they never use. This includes aluminum salts, artificial salts, artificial fragrance, filler ingredients, propylene glycol, phthalates, or parabens.“ All of these ingredients have been linked to health issues or unsustainable sourcing practices. I would love for Schmidts to increase their available information on the sourcing of their materials, and it is for this reason that I lowered their rating for this section.
Schmidt’s deodorant is based in a company based in Portland, Oregon. Originally the company started out as a small wholesale store in Oregon that sold its deodorants in glass jars accompanied by applicators. This was much more sustainable when compared to their current plastic packaging that they switched to when they started to gain traction and formed partnerships with investor Michael Cammarata, leading to an expansion of the products and revenue. This concerns me as it seems as though the company slightly lost sight of their true values and sustainable practices when they transitioned from a small company to a larger LLC. I was also disappointed in the amount of information available in regards to manufacturing and shipping the products. They are very transparent about their ingredients, but not so much available about how they manufacture the ingredients into their “natural” products.
Schmidt’s, similar to many other organic or “natural” based brands, have a lot of certifications and awards. These certifications include Leaping Bunny Certified Cruelty -Free, 100% Vegan certified, and most notably ECOCERT Cosmos Natural Certified Natural. ECOCERT certifies that the product is made with 100% natural origin ingredients according to Ecocert and their “world leading specialist in the certification of natural products.” The qualifications that need to be met to achieve this certification include having more than 95% of ingredients from natural origin, no GMOs, no synthetic fragrances or dyes, no animal-derived ingredients, using recyclable packaging, sustainably sourced ingredients and eco-friendly manufacturing. They claim that this process took almost two years to complete and Ecocert “validated” every step of the process. This process appears to be more in depth than other certification process as they do not just take the word of the company’s to fulfill their requirements, but rather they make “on-site visits” in order to be sure the companies have made changes so they are in-line with all of the requirements. The company has a plethora of their “natural” and “sustainable” programs and certifications, yet they lack any information on how the company supports their community, encourages equality and helps initiate social justice programs. When compared to Native, Schmidt’s deodorant takes less ownership and I would love to see them expand in the areas of social responsibility.