Ripe Ideas: Natural deodorant can take the heat

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When Carly Dougherty was enrolled in a culinary program in Berkeley, California, she spent a lot of time hustling in a hot commercial kitchen. When she complained to a few chef colleagues that her natural deodorant couldn’t stand up to her newfound stinkiness, they let her in on a secret: they made their own deodorants at home that were super effective.

“They taught me a really simple recipe,” Dougherty says. “And it blew my mind!” When she came home to Philadelphia, Dougherty kept playing with the deodorant recipe, trying to get the consistency just right.

“I got obsessed,” she says. “I probably made 50 batches until I got it just right.” After giving away lots of experimental batches to friends and family, she decided to sell some at a flea market, and with that, Stinky Girl — her natural body-care line — was born. A year later, Dougherty’s deodorants and hair powder can be found in delicious scents such as wood spice and lavender at Weavers Way Co-op, Harvest Local Foods and Vix Emporium.

Aside from helping people smell better, Dougherty still flexes her culinary muscles, too; she and her husband also own Food & Ferments, a company that makes sauerkraut, pickles, kombucha and kimchi — you know, the good kind of stinky. They sell their wares at the Rittenhouse Farmers Market on Saturdays.

Story byEmily Kovach.