While dark armpits are rarely a sign of anything serious, they can cause embarrassment, resulting in low self-esteem. Apart from preventing you from wearing sleeveless or clothes you like, dark underarms may also keep you from participating in certain sports or activities.
Causes of underarm darkening
If you have dark armpits or recently noticed that the skin under your arm has turned darker, you may be wondering what’s causing this. Well, this can be due to a number of potential causes. These include:
Deodorants and antiperspirants – Some deodorants contain chemical irritants that can irritate the skin and cause it to become darker. It is also worth knowing that those with darker skin complexion have a higher risk of discoloration, especially with regular use of such deodorants.
Shaving – While shaving may be a convenient underarm hair removal method, this causes irritation and abrasion. This is especially true with regular or repetitive shaving, which causes friction, resulting in pigmentation. There is also a belief that repeated shaving can stimulate the extra production of pigment cells or melanocytes.
Certain medications – Some medications can also cause darkening, especially those that raise your insulin levels. These include insulin, pituitary extra, corticosteroids, nicotinic acid, and others. Talking to your healthcare provider can determine if your medications are the cause of dark underarms.
Lack of exfoliation – Sometimes, the accumulation of dead skin cells in the area can lead to darkening. This is because when dead skin cells build up, they cause the appearance of dark patches on your armpits. You should also know that your armpits can also be clogged with residue from your deodorant/antiperspirant.
Acanthosis Nigricans (AN) – this is a skin pigmentation disorder characterized by thickened or darkened skin in the armpits, neck, and groin. AN can be inherited and is common in people who are overweight, have darker skin, and have diabetes or abnormal hormone levels.
Other potential causes of underarm darkening include:
- Friction from tight clothes
- Increased melanin or hyperpigmentation
- Hormonal imbalance or disorders
Lightening your underarms
The first step in lightening your underarm should focus on addressing the cause of discoloration. Some of the recommendations include changing the way you care for your armpits, as well as considering aesthetic treatments. A few things that can help lighten your underarms include:
- Moisturizing your armpits
- Changing your deodorant or switching to a natural alternative
- Exfoliating the area use facial exfoliator or body scrub
- Wearing loose fitting clothes
- Stopping/avoiding shaving; opt for laser hair removal
- Using topical creams with kojic acid, hydroquinone, and other safe lightening ingredients
- Using natural bleaching agents like lemon and cucumber
- Considering aesthetic/medical treatments (this depends on your diagnosis)
Try the Pink Intimate System
At Cutis Laser Clinics in Singapore, we have the Pink Intimate System, which is a painless skin lightening system. It can brighten your underarms and other sensitive areas using a non-invasive application. This also uses a topical solution that is specifically formulated, CE marked, and HSA Singapore registered.
The Pink Intimate System contains a delicate mixture of safe lightening ingredients like kojic acid and glutathione. It also has vitamin B12 to reduce redness and dryness, as well as Bisabolol, which calms and soothes skin irritation. The entire procedure takes between 45 and 60 minutes and begins with a deep cleansing of the area.
You can use this treatment on different body areas, including:
- Inner thighs
- Areola or the skin surrounding the nipples
- Mons Venus (the skin above the pubic area)
- Labia Majora (the outer folds of skin that are situated on the vaginal opening)
- Perianal Region (the area around the anus)
- Inguinal Region (the area of the crotch)
After the first application, you may see improvement in the treated area. Be sure to follow the recommended protocol, which is six sessions, with an interval of 7 to 10 days apart. It is also good to know that the Pink Intimate System can effectively lighten sensitive areas without downtime or side effects.
If you’re bothered with the discoloration in your underarms, consider talking to a skin or aesthetic doctor. Contact Cutis Laser Clinics today and book a consultation with our aesthetic doctor to learn more about the Pink Intimate System and other safe skin lightening treatments.