Summers are the best part of the year. After all the hard work at the gym in the winters, it’s time to flaunt your body. Skimpy, bright clothes are the best choices for the warm weather.
Unfortunately, unsightly, dark underarms can rain on your parade.
Underarms are very sensitive and are susceptible to a host of problems that include rashes, ingrowns, cysts, hyperhidrosis, and swollen lymph nodes. The most common problem, however, is dark underarms.
If you envy smooth and light underarms, fret not. We have got it all sorted.
Let’s first understand the common causes of darkened underarms and what you can do about it:
When you shave, you cut the hair off at just a little below the surface of your skin. The visible tips from under the skin makes your underarm area appear darker than it is.
What to do?
Stop shaving. Simple. Wax, epilate, or pluck your hair instead of using a razor. Doing so will remove your hair from the roots. No hair lurking close to the top of your skin means lighter appearing underarms.
Dead skin build-up:
If you notice closely, your underarm skin is not stretched out and silky smooth. It has microscopic valleys. These valleys trap dead skin cells and that leads to dark spots in your ‘pit of despair’.
What to do?
Exfoliate your underarms at least twice a week with a product that contains natural elements or lactic acid. Be gentle when exfoliating or you may risk itchy and red underarms. Once you start sloughing off the dead cells regularly, you will begin to notice the difference it makes.
Fragrance and certain harsh chemicals present in anti-perspirants and deodorants that we so frequently use, can react with the skin and cause discolouration.
What to do?
Try using natural methods to deodorize your armpits and to smell good. If you absolutely must use anti perspirants, use fragrant free, gel roll-ons.
This is a medical condition wherein brown or black marking occur on the neck, arms, underarms or groin. Over insulin production, glandular disorder, or obesity can cause this kind of pigmentation to happen.
What to do?
Consult your doctor. Rule out medical conditions or get treated. No amount of superficial treatments will help if the cause of your darkened underarms is internal. Once you begin your treatment, you can use natural bleaching methods to destroy the melanin Products that contain Retin-A, urea, salicylic acid, and alpha hydroxyacids can also help lighten your pits.
Once you have been able to diagnose your problem, and taken measures to limit the cause, you can try simple home remedies to naturally lighten and brighten your underarms.
Here are a few fool proof remedies for Dark Underarms:
Potato for dark underarms:
Potatoes are brilliant for lightening underarms. It is a natural bleach and anti-irritant. Anti-inflammatory properties in potatoes even help reduce swollen lymph nodes and itchy rashes.
Slice, grate, or blend a fresh raw potato and apply it on your underarms. Gently rub and then leave for about 10 minutes. Wash off with cold water and see a difference almost immediately. Continue this treatment thrice a week and you will have lighter, smoother underarms in no time.
Baking soda for dark underarms:
Chuck your regular talcum powder and replace it with baking soda! Yes, baking soda is probably your best bet if you are looking to have naturally odourless, non-itchy, and dry underarms. Once a week, make a paste of baking soda and vinegar (1:1) and apply it to your arms. Exfoliate your skin in circular motions and wash off. Follow it up with a generous sprinkling of baking soda and keep your underarms pigmentation and germ free.
Sandalwood for dark underarms:
Sandalwood has long been synonymous with beautiful, glowing and fragrant skin. Do not deprive your skin of sandalwood’s benign magic.
Combine freshly grounded sandalwood powder (pre-packaged will also do) with organic rose water to make it into a thick paste.
Apply the sandalwood mask on your underarms and let it stay for a good 15 minutes before washing it off with cold water.
Sandalwood will not only effectively help lighten your armpits, but also render it fragrant and soft. Do this treatment once a week till you achieve what you are looking for.
Turmeric lightening mask for dark underarms:
It has been an age old tradition in India to apply turmeric paste on the face and body of the bride to be to get rid of tan and make the skin glow. Curcumin present in turmeric is a potent skin lightener. Along with that, turmeric has anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties too that can prevent infection and worsen the appearance of your underarms.
Mix 1 tbsp. of organic turmeric powder, 1 tbsp. of yoghurt, and 10 drops of lemon juice in a bowl to form a paste. Apply the paste to the darkened area and leave it on for about 15 minutes. Wash off with lukewarm water and voila!
Lemon, a natural bleach and yoghurt, a treasure trove of good bacteria will further enhance the potency of turmeric and help make your underarms beautiful.
Honey pack for dark underarms:
Honey is a natural skin toner and lightening agent. Being a natural humectant, honey helps moisturize and smooth out your skin too.
Combine 1 teaspoon honey, ½ teaspoon of lemon and ½ teaspoon of sugar and apply it to the affected area. They honey and lemon will effectively solve the pigmentation problem and the sugar will help gently exfoliate the skin leaving your underarms feeling fresh and bright.
Orange peel mask for dark underarms:
Due to it containing a high concentration of citric acid, orange makes for a perfect skin lightener and exfoliator. The wonderful citrus fruit also arrests odour and keeps your underarms smelling fresh. The peels of this fruit are more potent than the fruit. Dry orange peels and powder it.
Combine 1 tbsp. of peel powder with ½ tsp. of rose water and 1 tsp. of milk.
Apply the paste to your underarms and gently exfoliate in circular motions.
Let it stay for about 10 minutes and then rinse with cold water.
Lactic acid in the milk further helps slough off dead skin cells and rose water soothes the skin. Use this treatment once every fortnight and see the magic.
Saffron and milk mask for dark underarms:
Saffron is the wonder herb that has provided answers to a million skin issues. It is known to provide softness and radiance to skin since time immemorial. Saffron mixed with milk is highly beneficial to the skin whether applied superficially or consumed internally.
Soak a few strands of pure saffron in 2 tbsp. of raw milk for about an hour. Blend the milk and apply it to the underarms.
Leave it overnight if possible (the milk might release unpleasant odours) and wash with soap and cold water in the morning.
Repeat this twice a week and say hello to better looking underarms.
Chickpea mask for dark underarms:
Chickpea makes for an excellent scrub that not only clears away dead skin cells but also whitens underarms when applied regularly. Chickpea mask is ideally made with yoghurt or milk and that enhances the benefits of the mask significantly.
Combine 2 tbsps. of chickpea floor with 1 tbsp. of yoghurt, ½ tsp. of lemon, and a few drops of rose water.
Apply the paste on your underarms and let it stay till it dries completely.
Next, wash it off with cold water.
Apply this mask once a week and watch your underarms slowly reveal its natural colour.
Vinegar pack for dark underarms:
With its mild acidic properties, apple cider vinegar is an elixir for your skin. It exfoliates from deep under your skin, dulls pigmentation, and fights sweat odour.
Dilute 1 tbsp. apple cider vinegar in a tbsp. of water and apply the potion to your underarms.
Wait for it to dry completely before washing it off with lukewarm water (You might want to test this on a little area first because apple cider vinegar is known to cause skin irritation in a few people).
Repeat this treatment once a week for brighter and smoother underarms.
Here’s throwing in a few tips to maintain healthy white underarms (after you have achieved them):
- Avoid using hair removal creams and shaving gels on your sensitive underarm skin. Harsh chemicals known to be present in these products can cause itching, discoloration, and sometimes skin disorders too.
- Practice good hygiene. Shower regularly and keep your armpits clean.
- Avoid wearing synthetic and tight clothes. Wear skin friendly fabrics that allow your skin to breathe.
- Practice healthy eating habits and keep your weight under check.
- Visit your dermatologist if you have excessive darkening, irritation, or severe rashes.
There you go! Simple and effective home remedies are at your disposal now. Go flaunt your body and sport your sleeveless blouses and swimsuits without a care.
Here’s to beautiful, glowing skin.