what causes dark underarms

What Causes Dark Underarms

Posted by Alra Customer Care on

Taking care of the skin under our arms has always been a part of personal care that we attach great importance to, particularly in the reason that our armpits have more susceptibility to dark spots and pigmentation than any other part of our body. Although not as visible as our faces, our underarms always need us to be focused on during the hot summer. The hot weather means those cute tank tops, swimsuits, summer dresses and short-sleeved shirts in your closet naturally explore your underarms. Many people desire to wear such outfits but hesitate due to concerns about dark underarms, which can be a source of self-consciousness.

There are various solutions to address this worry, you may choose to undergo medical cosmetic treatments for underarm skin management, such as laser therapy. Alternatively, use products that are designed for lightening and covering dark underarms, which provides an effective but temporary solution. Knowing that you're not alone if you’re facing the dark underarms issues.  Underarm hyperpigmentation is a common challenge faced by millions worldwide, stemming from various causes.

What Causes Dark Underarms

There are many causes of dark underarms, including skin conditions like hyperpigmentation or ingrown hairs, excessive sun exposure, shaving with a razor, and even poor hygiene or eating habits.

  1. Genetic & Medical Factors:

Underarm discoloration can linked to genetics, hormonal changes during a natural event like pregnancy, changes in fluctuating hormone levels, or side effects from certain medications or health conditions.

Another common cause is a lack of vitamin B3 (niacin), which helps maintain an even skin tone and treat inflammation. Conditions like polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) and factors like obesity and diabetes can also contribute to darkened underarms.

  1. Hair Removal Management:

The underarm skin is sensitive due to numerous skin folds, making it prone to tiny wounds during shaving or other hair removal methods. These tiny wounds can become infected with bacteria or yeast, causing inflammation and changes in skin color. The less breathability than other parts of the underarm creates a conducive and safe environment for bacteria to grow, further contributing to pigmentation and potential skin inflammation.

  1. Skin Irritation:
  • Using unsuitable deodorants, especially those containing alcohol and aluminum salts, can irritate underarm skin and lead to darkening. Aluminum, baking soda, parabens, alcohol, and other fragrances found in typical deodorants can irritate the skin and cause inflammation. This results in thickening and darkening of the armpits over time.

Excessive sweating in this area can exacerbate this issue. Moreover, a lack of exfoliation can result in dead skin cell accumulation, leading to dull skin and increased pigmentation.

Alra Non-metallic Deodorant’s completely clean formula, being aluminum-free, ammonia-free, paraben-free, and alcohol-free means this deodorant won't irritate underarms. Aluminum clogs sweat glands and cause skin irritation, and some studies have found aluminum to aid in estrogen production, which can be linked to the development of skin cancer.

Clean ingredients are a valuable detail that many deodorants miss the mark on. In today's market, if a product isn't up to clean beauty standards, it most often contains harmful ingredients. Alra Non-Metallic Deodorant surpasses clean beauty standards, leaving other deodorants in the dust.

  • Clothing Friction:

Tight clothing can cause significant rubbing and friction in areas like the armpits, groin, elbows, and knees, which might increase skin irritation and contribute to inflammation or pigmentation.

How to Prevent Dark Underarm

To effectively address the dark underarms issue, a consistent, daily personal care routine matters a lot.

  1. Regularly Apply Sunscreen:

Overexposure to the sun can cause the skin to darken, especially the individuals with fair skin. Before stepping out in the sun, make sure to apply sunscreen, even to your underarms, to minimize sun damage and prevent darkening.

  1. Keep the Area Clean:

Maintain proper hygiene by showering daily with warm water and mild soap. Thoroughly dry yourself after bathing, as the moisture of underarms can foster bacterial growth there, potentially preventing underarms from darkening.

  1. Choose a Gentle Deodorant:

When selecting a deodorant for combating our body odor, scrutinize the ingredient list. Avoid ingredients like aluminum and alcohol, for these ingredients may cause your underarms irritation. If you have sensitive skin, opt for a fragrance-free, moisturizing deodorant.

In a world where most deodorants contain harmful ingredients, such as aluminum and parabens, you need a deodorant that soothes the skin and contains the most nourishing ingredients to leave underarms refreshed and protected from moisture, heat, and unwanted smells. Alra Non-Metallic Deodorant’s long-lasting and residue-free formula invigorates the skin and battles sweat and odors all day long. Alra Non-Metallic Deodorant was developed with the promise of alleviating skin that has undergone radiation therapy or is affected by skin diseases. This ammonia-free, alcohol-free, and paraben-free deodorant has been developed for sensitive or irritated skin, but it works for all skin types as well.

  1. Manage Laser Hair Removal:

If constant shaving and waxing are causing issues, consider laser hair removal to keep your underarm hair in check for an extended period. Laser hair removal not only eliminates hair at the root but can also address dark spots caused by hair beneath the skin. Ensure you visit a reputable skin clinic for this treatment, as not all clinics cater to diverse skin tones and hair types. Consult with a board-certified dermatologist to determine the most suitable laser treatment for your underarms.

  1. Minimize Friction with Fabrics:

Avoid unnecessary friction in the underarm area by steering clear of heavy, rough, or itchy fabrics. Opt for breathable materials like cotton, as they provide proper ventilation to your underarms.


In summary, dark underarms can be attributed to a variety of factors, and understanding the causes is crucial to effectively addressing and preventing this common problem. Factors such as excessive sun exposure, poor hygiene, harsh deodorants, frequent shaving or waxing, and genetic predispositions can cause darkening of the skin under the arms.

By proactively addressing the underlying causes and implementing these preventive measures, individuals can achieve brighter, healthier underarms, thereby increasing their overall confidence and well-being. Remember, maintaining a consistent skincare routine and seeking professional advice when necessary are key steps to achieving desired results and preventing underarm darkening.

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