A century ago, it was very natural and societally acceptable to see sweat in the underarms but today, to the Fashion Police even in corporate settings, the sight of moist in the underarms causes discomfort.
All thanks to the wellness movement, there is an increased body awareness and inspiration for everyone to embrace traditionally less-thought-of parts of their bodies. Underarm care is one of the parts that emerged as a new category and this has brought with it confusion about what should be in the underarms. Don’t get it twisted, perspiration is absolutely a good thing, so don’t live on the “I-must-not-sweat-rule.
So, whether you are on the sweat lane or not, the underarms need to be taken care of. That’s where body odour starts from.
Here are some recommended underarm care routines that you should follow;
There is no negotiation with this. Underarms are a part of the body that is considered an intertriginous zone, meaning due to the folding of the skin, it is prone to being moist due to lack of airflow, and it can often harbour particular bacterial and fungal-yeast organisms.
So cleansing is important to reduce unwanted moisture and keep the natural balance of the microbiome. How? Take your bath. Dermatologists recommend washing your underarms once a day and no more unless you have a very athletic or physically demanding job or hobby and alternating between different pH-balanced body or underarm cleansers.
If You Shave, Do So Gently:
If you choose to shave your underarms, think of doing so like skiing – smooth right? If not done on a smooth surface, it would be a bumpy experience. If you’re not good with the razor, use a shave gel (or at least a moisturizing cleanser) in a warm shower after. This is critical to prevent razor burn and razor bumps. If you want to stick to the razor, be sure to change your razor at least once every one to two weeks.
Use Deodorants Consciously:
In navigating the deodorant market, pay attention to how your body reacts. If your deodorant is causing irritation or leaving too much residue on your skin and clothing, choose another. There are fragrance-free options without phthalates, parabens, sulfates, or dyes. It is always advisable to look for products with the fewest chemicals. Additionally, unless you need to block moisture because you have excessive sweating (known as hyperhidrosis), dermatologists say to avoid aluminium in your deodorant. Aluminium-containing antiperspirants are lifesavers for some, but it isn’t needed for day-to-day underarm care. It is possible to prevent odour without blocking sweat. Sweat is intentional, odour is preventable.
Have you been have been affected by some products and have developed dark underarms? Do not worry. There is a way out.
What causes dark armpits?
There are various potential causes for armpits becoming darker. It might be as a result of;
- Deodorants and antiperspirants (chemical irritants).
- Shaving (irritation and abrasion).
- Dead skin cell accumulation (lack of exfoliation).
- Friction (tight clothes).
- Smoker’s melanosis (hyperpigmentation caused by smoking).
- Hyperpigmentation (increased melanin).
- Acanthosis nigricans (often a sign of diabetes, obesity, or abnormal hormone levels).
- Erythrasma (bacterial infection).
- Melasma (dark patches on skin).
- Addison’s disease (damaged adrenal gland).
There are home remedies to lighten underarms naturally
- Potato. Grate a potato, squeeze the juice from the grated potato, and apply the juice to your underarms. After 10 minutes, rinse your armpits with cool water.
- Cucumber. Cut thick slices of cucumber and rub the slices on the dark areas of your underarms. After 10 minutes, rinse your underarms with cool water.
- Lemon. Cut thick slices of lemon and rub the slices on your underarms. After 10 minutes, rinse your armpits with cool water, dry them, and apply moisturizer.
- Orange peel. Mix 1 tablespoon of milk and 1 tablespoon of rose water with enough powdered orange peel to make a thick paste. Gently scrub your armpits with the paste and then leave it on for about 15 minutes before rinsing it off with cool water. Repeat two to three times per week.
- Turmeric. In a small bowl, mix 2 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice with enough turmeric to make a paste. Apply the paste evenly to your armpits. After 30 minutes, wash the paste off.
- Egg oil. Just before bedtime, massage egg oil into your armpits. The next morning, wash your underarms with pH-balanced body wash or soap.
- Coconut oil. Massage a few drops of coconut oil onto your armpits. After 15 minutes, wash your armpits with lukewarm water and a mild soap. Repeat these steps two to three times a day.
- Tea tree oil. Mix 5 drops of tea tree oil with 8 ounces of water in a small spray bottle. Spray this on your underarms — and let it dry naturally — every day after drying off following your shower or bath.
It’s your underarms. Take good care of it so it can return the favour.
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