For many people, dark underarms can be a source of embarrassment.
Darker underarm skin can keep some people from dressing in sleeveless tops, wearing bathing suits in public, and participating in sports.
Like skin blemishes and discoloration on other parts of the body, dark underarms can result in a lack of confidence and self-esteem.
There are various potential causes for armpits becoming darker including:
- 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)
Your first step to lighten underarms
The first response to the “how to lighten armpits” question is to address some of the basic causes:
- Change your brand of deodorant/antiperspirant. Some people switch to a natural alternative such as baking soda or apple cider vinegar. Some people stop using a deodorant altogether.
- Stop shaving. Some people select waxing or laser hair removal instead.
- Exfoliate. Many people use a body scrub or a facial exfoliator two to three times a week.
- Wear loose-fitting clothes.
- Stop smoking.
How to lighten underarms naturally
Many people choose a natural approach to armpit lightening.
Advocates of natural remedies suggest a number of natural bleaching agents, including these:
- 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.
If you’re concerned about the skin of your underarms being darker than the skin on the rest of your body, discuss your situation with your dermatologist.
If your dark underarms aren’t the result of an underlying condition needing medical treatment, talk with your dermatologist about some of the alternatives for lightening underarms.
Natural Deodorant Hacks You Can Try At Home
There’s nothing wrong with wanting to smell good. Unless you’re particularly lucky and have no body odor, you might rely on deodorant to do so.
The good news: it doesn’t have to be the traditional stick. There are other options out there if you want to be intentional about what you put on your body.
If you want to opt out of some ingredients while still smelling sweet, natural deodorant might be the choice for you.
Alternative deodorant options
You might be able to find some of the ingredients below in your kitchen cabinet, and they make great alternatives to deodorant.
Witch hazel is a versatile ingredient to keep in your cupboard. It’s a natural astringent and it’s anti-inflammatory, meaning that it removes excess moisture from the skin and kill bacteria.
It’s also a popular deodorant alternative because it doesn’t leave residue on the skin. Plus, it gets rid of odor fast.
The main downside to this method is that it wears off quickly and needs to be reapplied throughout the day.
How to use
Simply place witch hazel on a cotton swab or reusable cotton cloth and rub it on the underarm area.
Baking soda or cornstarch
These typical kitchen ingredients are used for more than just baking or cooking. They also make great natural hygiene products.
How to use
Mix 1/8 teaspoon with a little water and then rub it under your arms.
You can also use a mixture of baking soda and cornstarch to fight odor and perspiration. Mix one part baking soda with six parts cornstarch and dust the powder under your arms.
When life gives you lemons, use it as deodorant?
You may be surprised to know that applying lemon juice to your armpits is a simple way to eliminate odor. Lemon juice is full of citric acid, which naturally gets rid of odor-causing bacteria.
How to use
Cut a lemon in half and squeeze out 1 teaspoon of juice. Dip a cotton ball and apply straight to your underarms. Keep the lemon in the fridge for an extra soothing effect.
Apple cider vinegar
Apple cider vinegar has a number of uses and benefits, such as being an alternative to deodorant.
How to use
Mix 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar with 1 tablespoon of water. Use a cotton pad or reusable cloth to apply the mixture to your underarms.
Coconut oil is incredibly versatile for hair and skin needs. It’s also antibacterial and antiviral, meaning it can eliminate odor-causing bacteria in the underarm area.
How to use
Take 1/4 teaspoon of oil and rub it under your arms with a cotton cloth or your fingers. Let it dry completely before dressing, as oil can easily stain clothes.
Baking soda & coconut oil
Baking soda is one of the easiest ways to replace store-bought deodorants. It’s simple, effective, and inexpensive.
However, if you don’t want to use a straight powder deodorant, you can mix it with coconut oil. This will create a soft bar that can be applied daily.
How to use
Combine 4 tablespoons of baking soda and cornstarch each with 6 tablespoons of coconut oil. Place in the refrigerator to set and apply as needed.
Forgot your deodorant? Try these hacks
If there’s one thing most of us carry around consistently these days, it’s hand sanitizer. Just squirt some onto each armpit to remove bacteria and get rid of smell.
Maybe you forgot to put on your deodorant before you left the house, but you happen to have some skin-safe essential oils in your bag.
No problem! Blend up your favorites and apply to your underarms. You can keep reapplying throughout the day as it wears off.
Not only is aloe vera one of the hardest plants to kill, but it’s also incredibly useful.
Aloe has natural antibacterial and antiseptic properties, which means it can get rid of odor-causing bacteria.
How to use
Break off a small piece of aloe vera from your plant and apply the gel directly to your armpits. You can also use pure aloe vera gel from a prepackaged bottle.
Dangers Of Organic Skin Care Products
Often times, we feel good about making the switch to organic skincare. This is because it seems to be a most logical thought since they are free of parabens, preservatives, and other skin-loving nutrient or so we think.
Most women who have solely transformed their skincare routine find that cystic acne, milia, and a variety of other skin disorders are the price they have to pay. But why is this the case?
Although we usually blame this as an allergic reaction, or simply due to the harsh nature of most skincare products, there is a bigger explanation on why this is happening so frequently.
Why do these reactions occur?
Statistics show that anything you put on your skin enters your blood stream within the first 20-30 seconds of contact. While we all can’t escape using products sans-preservatives or harmful chemicals, it is important to take note of your skin type, and which ingredients don’t agree with the skin you’re in.
The hidden reality with organic skincare is that they actually contain larger molecules which the skin finds difficult to break-down. As a result, they usually sit on top of the skin, and cause additional irritation, redness, and dry patches. These molecules are larger than usual because they contain no preservatives and don’t react the same way as other products.
How can you tell if a product is 100% organic?
A large amount of harmful ingredients are often concealed under different names.
Toxic synthetic chemicals are found in a number of natural products, and this could be the route of all your negative skincare reactions. Even the words ‘organic’, ‘natural’ and ‘all-natural’ don’t mean that your skincare products are free from harmful chemicals.
If you’re unsure of what an ingredient means, you can always look it up.
Invest in skincare which uses natural preservatives instead of harmful chemicals. These include hops oil and grapefruit seed oil which are both certified organic. These products are free from synthetic chemicals, and are substituted with a natural counterpart.
What are some harmful ingredients found in organic skincare?
The tiny particles are often found in natural sunscreens, lotions, moisturisers, and certain makeup products. Upon contact, there are immediately absorbed into the bloodstream, and can cause long-term damage since they are mostly untested.
Parabens (methylparaben, propylparaben)
These just a few different variations of common preservatives which are used to prolong the life of skincare and beauty products. While their safety is always at the centre of dispute, they are added in most products to subside the growth of bacteria, and keep products looking and feeling brand new.
Similar to the use of parabens, they are used mostly to act as an antibacterial agent in skincare cleansers and toning solutions. Despite being named as a probable human carcinogen, it is still widely used in the beauty and skincare community, although under a different term.
Which ingredients offer the best benefits for skin?
Anything with plant-based essential fatty acids (EFA’s) will be the best product on any skin type. Antioxidants such as vitamin A, C, and E are all natural and won’t give your skin any nasty side effects – ever! They are also antibacterial, and will keep any unnecessary dirt from seeping into your bloodstream.
Top Tomato Skincare Hacks You Can Try
You might already know that tomato is a superfood for many reasons.
It isn’t just great for your gut health but works wonders for your skin too.
They are loaded with vitamins A, C and K. Most of which you find in the beauty products that you use. These vitamins are very healthy for the skin.
Tomato has the kind of acidity that unclogs the pores of your skin and helps treat acne.
It can even be used to do away with free radicals that pollute healthy skin cells.
There is a lot more to what you can do with tomatoes for your skin and so, we’ve got you some DIY recipes to try on your skin.
Tomato face mask for acne
For this, you need 1 tsp fresh lemon juice, 1 tbsp tomato pulp and 2-3 tbsp of oatmeal flour.
Now, whisk the tomato pulp and lemon juice all too well. Then, add the oatmeal flour slowly until you get a nice paste out of the mixture. Apply this mask on your face and let it sit for another 15 minutes.
This mask will help unclog pores and fade acne scars over the period of time. It even works well to combat pigmentation.
If you are dealing with sensitive skin, you need to patch test this mask before you use it on your face.
Tomato face mask for brightening skin
For this, you need 1 tbsp tomato pulp and 2 tsp Greek yogurt.
Mix both the ingredients nicely and leave no clumps. Apply this smooth paste on your face to cleanse and exfoliate your face skin for 10 minutes. Rinse it off with cold water once you are done.
This mask will help in hydrating the skin and reducing the pigmentation appearance as well. Yogurt helps in hydrating the skin and gives you rather smooth and supple skin with time.
Tomato and papaya face mask for combination skin
For this, you need 8-10 cubes of papaya and tomato pulp.
Make a paste of the papaya cubes by blending them and then add equal amount of tomato pulp in it. Mix it well and apply it on your face.
Give it 15 minutes to do its job before you rinse it off with lukewarm water. This mask works great for blemishes and it even gives your skin the much needed glow.
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