Ladies, the underarms may be tiny relative to the rest of our body parts, but they are quite possibly one of the most challenging areas to maintain. The skin there is delicate and sensitive and is prone to annoying issues such as skin irritation, rashes, pigmentation, ingrown hairs, and even (ouch!) painful pimples. What did we expect, really, when we poke, prod, shave, nick, tweeze and pull them on a regular basis? (With all the time it takes us to keep the area smooth and hair-free, it is worth considering getting rid of underarm hair once and for all.)
So, you’ve stripped the area of hair and you are ready to raise the roof while dressed in your favourite LBD (little black dress). But it’s hard to feel sexy and confident when there are unsightly dark patches on your otherwise smooth underarms! And what fun would it be to always have to be careful about keeping your arms at your sides at all times? It should come as no surprise that one of the most common problems raised about underarm care is skin discolouration and pigmentation.
Do not fret—your quest for perfectly toned and smooth underarms can begin right now. Here are seven ideas to help even out your skin tone, and they can all be done in the comfort of your own home, using things that are probably already available in your kitchen!
Note. If you have skin sensitivities, please do a spot test first before applying onto the entire underarm area.
It is so good in curries and as a marinade for roasted vegetables, but turmeric can also be amazing for the skin when it is applied topically. In fact, the pungent yellow powder is already used regularly as an ingredient in face masks to help with hyperpigmentation issues. Therefore, it makes sense that turmeric would also work well to help even out skin tone in the underarm area.
Make a mask with one teaspoon of turmeric powder and one tablespoon of milk (the lactic acid in milk can help with the lightening process). You can also choose to add a teaspoon of honey, which is good for its antibacterial properties, but helps that it smells good too. Combine the ingredients well and slather the paste on your underarm areas; let sit for 10 minutes before rinsing off. Do this twice weekly.
The citric acid and natural astringent properties of the humble lemon makes it an effective exfoliator and bleaching agent. It really doesn’t get any easier than this: Cut a lemon into thick slices and rub it on the underarm area for about two minutes. Leave the juice on for another 10 minutes and then wash off completely. This can be done three times a week.
Cucumbers are crunchy, hydrating and wonderful in salads, sandwiches or just on its own. It also works for depuffing and reducing dark eye circles, and can help to lighten skin discolouration. Just as you would do with lemons, cut a couple of slices of cucumber and rub it on your underarms for a couple of minutes. Let the juice sit for about 10 minutes and then rinse off. Do this every day.
Tea Tree Oil
Help to even out skin tone while keeping underarm skin youthful with antioxidant-rich tea tree oil. Tea tree is also antimicrobial, so it serves double-duty as both skin-lightener and deodorant. Add about five drops of tea tree oil to 250 ml of water and put it in a spray bottle. Shake well and spray onto the underarm area; let dry. Use once a day.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Use apple cider vinegar to help slough off dead skin cells while getting rid of skin discolouration. Like tea tree oil, it is antimicrobial and may help to rid the area of bacteria that can cause body odour. Mix one part apple cider vinegar, one part water and one part baking soda; expect the mixture will bubble. Once the bubbling has abated, you may apply the mixture to underarm area. Rinse off well after it dries completely. This can be done three times a week.
Besides having a bleaching effect that can help to even out dark patches, potatoes can also calm down underarm itch and irritations. You will first need to remove and discard the skin of a potato (a small one will suffice) and then grate the flesh. Grating the potato allows you to release its juice, which you then apply to your underarms. You can rinse off after 15 minutes. Do this two times a day.
We are ending off with something sweet, or more accurately, sweet-smelling! Rosewater is not only effective as a skin lightener, but it is also good for blood circulation, relieves inflammation and moisturises the skin. To one tablespoon of baking soda, add just enough rosewater to create a thick paste. Apply it to your underarms and leave on for about five minutes before rinsing off completely. How often should you do this? Preferably twice a week.