How to Choose the Best Underarm Whitening Product?
Imagine how much you look forward to warm weather after the gloom and dullness of a cold spell! You can finally wear tank tops, go strapless, sleeveless or even enjoy a swim in your bikini suit whenever you feel like. Except you cannot let yourself go yet; not with those dark underarms! How will you cheer your favourite football team if you cannot even do the Mexican wave? Dark armpits can send your confidence down the drain real quick.
Luckily, you don’t have to ‘manage’ the situation by covering up; we have compiled a detailed list of the best underarm whitening products. While we are at it, we have put together everything you need to know about black armpits; including how you can lighten them off your kitchen shelves.
Why underarms become discoloured - common causes?
Underarm darkening, also known as axillary darkening is a skin condition that affects both men and women. The conditions is however prevalent among women with darker skin. So, what are the causes of darkened armpits?
Production of excess melanin in the skin can cause discoloration of the underarms. This can be as a result of exposure to UV rays, inflammation and other injuries like razor burns.
This kind of armpit darkening occurs in pregnant women whose body produces extraordinary amounts of oestrogen and progesterone. These hormones among others cause skin darkening in over 50% of pregnant women. The condition is experienced in ladies of all skin colours but is more noticeable on the light skinned ones.
The darkening may clear after giving birth. However, a woman whose armpits darken during pregnancy is highly likely to experience the same after using hormonal contraceptives.
Elevated levels of insulin
People who are hypoglycemic are prone to skin darkening especially on the folds and moist area of the skin. This can be caused by both the high levels of insulin as well as allergic reactions to the antihyperglycemic medication. This condition, acanthosis nigricans, causes dark patches on armpits, groin area and the neck.
Some antiperspirants and deodorants are responsible for armpit darkening. This is caused by skin reaction to some chemical ingredients found in the products. The severity varies in individuals depending on skin sensitivity.
Accumulation of dead skin
Lack of proper hygiene can lead to darkened armpits. Dead skin accumulates on the underarms if improperly scrubbed during washing. Couple this with loose skin that is trapped on the hairs and you have a black and smelly armpit.
How to prevent underarms getting dark?
Proper hygiene can go a long way in preventing your underarms from darkening. Wash thoroughly with soap to get rid of dead skin. Also ensure to get rid of any beauty product residues from antiperspirants and deodorants. If left in place for too long, these products can be damaging to your skin.
Use organic or alcohol free products like baby powder to reduce the harmful effects of sweat on your armpits. This measure will come handy if your skin is sensitive to antiperspirants and deodorants.
Do not irritate your armpits by use of harsh hair removal methods. When the choice is between shaving and hair removal creams, go for the creams. Depilatory creams if used sparingly and as per the manufacturer's instructions aggravate the skin less.
Wear loose clothes to minimise friction. It also helps if your clothing is sweat absorbent. Excessive sweating and friction are a deadly recipe for armpit darkening.
Now that we know why your armpits might get dark, let's see what you can do and how different products work to lighten your armpits.
When do you need an underarm cream?
So, you have dark underarms and you wish for lighter and evened out skin, home remedies are not working or you just don’t want to deal with the mess that accompanies them or worse still, your skin could be reacting to these remedies. This is when an underarm cream comes in handy.
How do underarm whitening creams work?
Underarm whitening creams work by use of active ingredients which inhibit or slow down the production of melanin on the skin.
Melanin refers to the natural skin pigmentation. It’s produced by specialized cells known as melanocytes. The action of lightening creams on these cells reduces the darkening of the underarms.
Hispanics, blacks and other people of colour are more prone to darkened armpits. This is because their bodies produce more melanin compared to whites.
How to use these creams?
Before you apply a skin bleaching cream on your armpits, first carry out a patch test. Apply a thin film of the cream on a spot of your underarm and observe for at least 24 hours. If you do not experience a major reaction like uncontrollable itching or persistent redness, then carry on with the treatment as prescribed.
Best results are realized if the cream is applied once or twice a day; continuously for 2 months. It’s advisable to use a cotton bud during the application to avoid bleaching your fingers or palms. That said; wash your hands before and after use.
For an even underarm skin tone, ensure only the black or patchy parts are covered by the cream. Apply sunscreen to avoid irritation by sunlight.
Be sure to only buy skincare products from reputable outlets to avoid buying counterfeit or substandard creams. After all, it's for your skin!
How to lighten armpits at home - TOP 5 Remedies
There are safer skin-lightening remedies that you can use to lighten your armpits. Here are our top 5:
1.Milk - Milk contains vitamin A which aids in production of new cells and lactic acid which bleaches the skin. It can be used with a host of other ingredients like honey cucumber, aloe vera, flour etc.
An example of a typical concoction is mixing a spoonful of milk, curd and flour in the ratio of 2:1:1. Apply the thick paste on your underarms. Let it stay for about 15 minutes then wash off and rinse with cold water. A twice a day treatment will do.
2. Lemon - Lemons contain high amounts of vitamin C also known as ascorbic acid. This acid helps in exfoliating the upper skin layer which contains dead cells. It’s also an antioxidant which aids in stimulating production of collagen for skin cell regeneration. The acid also interrupts the enzymatic action responsible for melanin production.
Mix lemon juice with honey or milk in equal parts to create a DIY armpit lightening paste. You can also rub a cut lemon on the underarms and let it act for 10-15 minutes before washing it off. Apply a moisturizer after treatment since the juice drys out the skin.
3. Apple Cider Vinegar - Apple Cider Vinegar contains high levels of grycol acid which is a skin bleaching agent. Apply it on your underarms twice a day using a cotton ball. You can also enhance the whitening effect of vinegar by mixing it with rice flour.
The flour contains para aminobenzoic acid which acts as a natural sunscreen, melanin inhibitor and collagen production booster. Use the two ingredients to make a thick paste. Apply it on your clean and dry underarms, let it dry for about five minutes then clean it off with warm water.
4. Baking Soda Scrub - For this homemade skin scrub, make a thick paste by mixing baking soda with water. Apply the paste on your armpits and scrub to remove dead skin. This remedy does not cause skin drying and can be left in place overnight for better results. Wash off the paste with plenty of water after scrubbing.
5. Cucumber - You have probably had cucumber slices placed on your eyes to remove puffiness. This spa grade treatment will also do for your black armpits. Cucumber contains an array of nutrients like vitamins A and C. These, together with other nutrients such as biotin, cucumber works to whiten and nourish your underarms.
Juice a cucumber and apply the juice under your arms. Let it act for about 15 minutes before washing it off.
How to choose an armpit lightening product?
Skin sensitivity to different products differs from one person to another. Also, different creams offer other benefits which go beyond underarm whitening. So how do you go about choosing an effective cream?
- Avoid products with harsh chemicals. The armpit area is one of the most sensitive parts of your skin. Lightening creams with over 2% hydroquinone and mercury can have adverse side effects including irreversible darkening.
- Go for creams with natural and organic ingredients. Creams made from natural whitening ingredients are gentler on your underarms. Products with mulberry, bearberry, orchid, papaya and kojic extracts as well as liquorice and Alpha-Arbutin are some of the ingredients to look for.
- Pick products with moisturising and soothing agents. Most bleaching creams and home remedies dry out the skin. It’s also possible to experience itching sensation before the skin gets used to the treatment. A cream which ingredient encompasses moisturisers and soothing agents will leave your skin soft and non-irritated.
Where to buy them?
Like all your beauty products, underarm skin whiteners can be bought from online or physical stores. Be sure to only buy from reputable ones to avoid buying counterfeit or substandard creams. Great customer reviews are also pointers in the right direction.
What are the different ways how you can lighten underarms and armpits?
Salon grade scrubs are used to lighten the underarms by reducing the tan. These products use ingredients like hip oil, vanilla extracts and exfoliating agents to rid the skin of dead skin. The treatments are usually followed by hydrating blends that moisturise the skin for a fresh and renewed feel.
Some deodorants do more than prevent body odour. They consist of skin whitening ingredients like liquorice extracts and baking soda and kojic acid. As astringents, they close the skin pores for less sweating which reduces bacterial action. The lightening effect of deodorants is however more pronounced if used with other bleaching products like creams.
Laser skin lightening is a specialized treatment that removes damaged, dead and darkened skin. It makes use of concentrated beams of light to peel the upper skin layer, ushering the way for newer and brighter skin to grow. The treatment also heats the lower skin layer (dermis) hastening production of new skin cells.
This method of armpit whitening is fast with the results being observed immediately after the treatment. However, it’s a costly procedure and can be out of reach for most people.
Creams provide a convenient, effective and fairly affordable option for lightening your underarms. We have prepared a list of the best underarm lightening creams in the market below.
Best Underarm Lightening Creams
#1 - Amaira Skin Lightening Serum
Amaira Serum is specifically recommended for lightening intimate areas which include underarms, nipples, genitals and inner thighs. This is because it is made up of natural and clinically proven ingredients to safely lighten hyperpigmented skin with about 6-8 weeks of use.
Mulberry extract, Amaira’s active ingredient is known to cut down melanin production by up to 50%. It works with a combination of other natural ingredients like mulberry root bark, Asian orchid extracts, glycolic acid, kojic acid and of host of others. This list consists of both ancient and modern ingredients which have been used for both lightening and skin care purposes.
The manufacturers, Amaira Natural Skincare are based in USA. They make the serum in an FDA approved facility. Another appealing feature about Amaira is that it contains no harsh chemicals, perfumes or parabens. This, plus the natural ingredients make it safe to use on sensitive skin.
The serum works best when it is used twice daily. Use sunscreen whenever you expose your skin to the sun. While it has no known side effects, you should not use it while pregnant. You should also not use it on freshly shaved or waxed underarms.
You can buy either one bottle or a 3 bottle pack which gives you more value. You don’t have to worry about returning it either because it comes with a 60 days money back guarantee for both opened and unopened products. Shipping within US or UK is free but it is done at a reasonable rate to other locations as well.
Amaira rating: 5 out of 5
#2 - Zeta White
Zeta White comes as a 3 in 1 package of a face wash, night cream and moisturizer which work together to make your skin whiter, younger and healthier.
The product is made by Helpful Cosmetics Ltd based in UK using 100% natural ingredients. It promises to clear all forms of hyperpigmentation like sunburns, dark marks or patches from injuries, ashy eyebrows, knuckles, birthmarks and dark armpits.
The cream works by naturally lightening the skin using enzyme rich papaya extract and reducing melanin production using lemon extract. The moisturizer contains liquorice extract which brightens your skin and protects it from further darkening. Hyaluronic acid diminishes wrinkles while healthy oils help to replenish the skin. All these work without any side effects.
The night cream contains Allantoin which helps to exfoliate your skin, allowing formation of newer and lighter cells. Its anti-inflammatory properties help to revitalize your skin while you sleep. The manufacturers claim that with consistent use of Zeta White, you may not need to use primers and highlighters for your skin
Zeta white is safe to use on sensitive skin which makes it great for your armpits. This is assured by the ingredients which are not only natural but also tested for safety. It is 95% organic and does not contain sulphates, alcohol or parabens.
The cream is used daily for best results. You are required to cleanse your skin with the facial wash then apply the skin lightening moisturizer for the day. In the evening, cleanse again and apply the night cream. Be sure to use sunscreen especially when you bare your skin.
When you buy the full 3 in 1 system, you get an extra free face wash. You also have the option of buying any of the products separately. What if it doesn’t work? You are allowed to test it while covered by 100% money back guarantee.
Another amazing offer from the manufacturers is an opportunity to get a 12 month supply of Zeta White. You do this by sending before and after photos; if they are published, you qualify.
Zeta White rating: 4.5 out of 5
#3 - Meladerm
This is a skin whitening cream made by USA based company called Civant Skin Care. The manufacturers who claim to have taken 4 years to bring the cream to perfection promise you a whiter, tighter and evened out skin. The cream is used to lighten acne marks, age spots, tans and sun damage, freckles, birthmarks and dark knees, underarms and knuckles.
The active ingredient Alpha-Arbutin is a product of the bearberry tree. It works by reducing and controlling the amount of melanin, the skin pigment. It works in conjunction with ingredients like gigawhite, kojic acid, licorice extract, Niacinamide, glycolic acid and other natural ingredients to leave your skin looking lighter, young and firm.
The all-natural combination makes Meladerm safe to use on all skin types including your underarms. No side effects are associated with meladerm. However, for an off chance that you might react to at least one of the ingredients, it is advisable to test it on a small patch of skin and give it some time before proceeding.
The cream is applied twice daily to give desired results. Wash and dry your skin before applying. Depending on the severity of your condition, it may take 2-3 months for complete results. Close the lid tightly and store the cream in a cool dry place. You can refrigerate for long term use.
You can only buy Meladerm from the official website. When you spend $200 and more on Civant products, you get a free eye complex. Another great offer is free insurance on USPS shipment when you spend $25 or more. All this is covered by a 30 day money back guarantee.
Meladerm rating: 4.2 out of 5
This is a formula that uses clinically proven ingredients to lighten freckles, liver spots, sunspots, pregnancy mask, birthmarks, acne scars and all other forms of hyperpigment. This product of Skinception promises to leave your skin looking flawless and airbrushed.
Illuminatural is a combination of 6 active ingredients, 8 natural plant extracts and 5 refined minerals. All of these are safe to use on all skin types. They work together to slow down excess production of melanin, enhance the natural sloughing away of dead skin and nourish your skin to leave it looking youthful.
Illuminatural works best when applied twice daily, morning and evening. Apply it in small dots on affected skin and smooth it until it is fully absorbed into the skin. Illuminatural is quite light and so it absorbs quite easily. Like with other lightening creams, use of sunscreen further protects your skin.
While there are no known side effects, it is not recommended for pregnant or breastfeeding women. Also, it is advisable to try it on a little area of your skin and observe it before deciding to use it.
The serum works with the skin’s 28 days renewal process and promises visible results with as little as 2 weeks. However, you may need about 3 cycles to achieve optimal results.
The serum comes with a money back guarantee for the first 3 cycles which totals to 90 days. There are also generous discounts for a supply of 3 months and more.
- Visible change within 2 weeks
- Easily spreads and absorbs
- 90 days money back guarantee
- Detailed info available online
- Clinically proven
- Contains plant based sun filters
- Not available in retail stores
All the following products are known to do a great job. They have great customer reviews and are not known to cause any adverse effects on the body. Nevertheless, Amaira Natural Skin Lightening Serum tops the list. Apart from being made of 100% natural products, it comes specifically recommended for intimate skin.
This automatically strikes one as the best for underarms which also tend to be sensitive. The 60 day money back guarantee gives you plenty of time to test the serum. It's also backed up by great customer feedback and plenty of information online. With all this information at your fingertips, you have no reason not to lift your hands when the DJ says so!
Sonia Knight is the founder of be:skinformed.Apart from having her own experience with hyperpigmentation, Sonia has gained vast knowledge in the dermatology field. For more info on this, check out our about us page.