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HomeFashionUnderarm Care: How to Cleanse, Exfoliate and Shave Your Armpits

Underarm Care: How to Cleanse, Exfoliate and Shave Your Armpits

Photo: Jumbo Tsui/Trunk Archive

With wellness movements increasing body awareness and inspiring us to embrace body parts that are traditionally seldom thought of, underarm care has become a new category that is as special as ever Fun Two years, for many of us, brought a lot of sweat stress. (Or is it just me?) The good news is, sweating is definitely a good thing — especially now.

“For humans, the physiology of sweating is critical to maintaining a safe and healthy body temperature,” Alicia Zalka, dermatologist and founder of Surface Deep Medicine She went on to explain that we counteract excess body heat with built-in cooling mechanisms. “When the body generates too much heat, sweat droplets are produced in the sweat glands,” she continued. “Through the entrance of microscopic sweat ducts, moisture penetrates to the surface of the skin. When the moisture in the sweat comes into contact with the air through evaporation, it releases heat and cools down.”

As important as sweating is to helping the body maintain balance, its results aren’t always pleasing—especially when there’s too much body odor. But many people don’t realize that sweat is odorless at source. “When bacteria called corynebacteria that live on the skin interact with sweat and oils, it creates an odor, resulting in what we call ‘body odor,'” explains Dr. Zalka. That’s where underarm care comes in, from thorough cleansing and exfoliation to refreshing deodorants that not only control odor but also promote the overall health of your body. Here, a guide on how to detox and nourish your underarms.

Daily cleansing

Armpits are body parts that are considered The intertriginous zone, which means that due to the folds of the skin, it can easily become damp due to the lack of airflow and can often harbor specific bacterial and fungal yeast organisms. “Proper care and cleansing are very important to reduce unnecessary moisture and maintain the natural balance of your microbiome,” explains Dr. Zalka. “However, it has to be done with caution.” She recommends washing your underarms once a day (and never again, unless you have a very athletic or physically demanding job or hobby), and balancing your body or underarms at different pHs Alternate between cleansers. One such option is the Kaia Naturals Underarm Bar, which is powered by detoxifying charcoal. “Sweat doesn’t smell — it feeds the bacteria and that’s what makes it smell,” says Kaia Naturals founder Mary Futher, who goes by the @MadameSweat nickname on TikTok. “When you tackle the odor-causing bacteria, you extend your odor-free time much longer. It’s a necessary step in your natural deodorization routine, especially since it doesn’t prevent sweating; it stops you from smelling.”

Eucerin Advanced Facial Cleanser

Kaia Naturals Underarm Stick
Image may contain: Bottle, Lotion, and Cosmetics

Image may contain: Bottle, Lotion, and Cosmetics

Image may contain: Bottle, Lotion, and CosmeticsGlossier Body Hero Cleanse + Exfoliate Duo

Goshi Exfoliating Bath Towel

Exfoliate regularly

Like the face, the underarms can be affected by skin sensitivity and irritation. According to Dr. Zalka, “excess oil, clogged pores, acne (called folliculitis), and a buildup of dead, dull, and sometimes discolored skin cells” are reasons exfoliation should extend below the neck s reason. For that, there are physical exfoliators, which are masks or scrubs that manually remove dead skin cells and debris, or chemical exfoliators, like toners, that harness the power of AHAs, BHAs, and PHAs to gently melt away buildup. To avoid irritation, Dr. Zalka prefers the latter, and recommends using a glycolic acid toner (with no more than 5 percent glycolic acid) to slough off dead skin and improve overall tone and texture, and/or use an exfoliating deodorant pad, like Surface Deep’s innovative Deodorant pads that combine fruit-based glycolic acid with probiotics and antioxidant-rich ingredients to inhibit odor-causing bacteria and reset the natural balance of skin microbiome.

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Deep Deodorant Pad

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Soft Serve Polishing Stick Microcrystalline Exfoliator

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Image may contain: SoapImage may contain: Cosmetics, Bottle, and Aftershave

megababe Happy Nest Detox Armpit Mask

Lavanila Healthy Underarm Detox Mask

If You Shave, Do So Gently

If You Shave, Do So Gently

If You When choosing to shave your armpits, think of it like skiing. “If it’s not done on a slippery surface, you’re a ski mogul, and it’s a bumpy experience,” explains Dr. Zalka. “Do you want to gliding

down to prevent the razor. For a smooth shave, she stresses, using a shaving gel (or at least a moisturizing cleanser) in a warm shower is critical to preventing razor burn and razor bumps. If you’re prone to irritation or want to prevent ingrown hairs as much as possible, prep the night before. “When you go to bed, apply a thin layer of moisturizer to the areas you’re shaving,” Dr. Zalka instructs. “This will create a friction-free experience the next day.” When it comes to razors, be sure to replace your razor at least every one to two weeks. “It’s expensive, but it prevents problems!” emphasizes Dr. Zalka. Image may contain: Cosmetics, Aftershave, Bottle, and Shaker

Image may contain: Cosmetics, Aftershave, Bottle, and Shaker

Athena Club Smooth Skin Three-piece Set

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Fur Moisturizing Shaving Cream

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Image may contain: Bottle, Shaker, Cosmetics, and Deodorant

Ursa Major Shaving Cream

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Intermittent Hydration

In the same way your face and body crave moisture, Your underarms need moisture to look and feel their best. They just don’t need to be that often. Since they’re damp, Dr. Zalka recommends using a pH-balanced underarm or body lotion once or twice a week, or more as needed for dryness. Another tip for keeping your underarms soft and supple: “Stop shaving and deodorant if you notice irritation,” she says.

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Humanrace Moisturizer Moisturizer

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Billie Dry-Bye Body Lotion
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Image may contain: Cosmetics, Deodorant, Bottle, and Shaker Obagi Medical IDR Exfoliating Moisturizing Lotion

Consciously remove Smelly

Dr. Zalka’s most important piece of advice when navigating the deodorant market is this: Listen to your body. “If your deodorant causes irritation or leaves too much residue on your skin and clothes, choose another.” If you’re looking to take it a step further, consider “clean and simple,” That is, it is fragrance free and avoids the use of phthalates, parabens, sulfates or dyes. “Look for products with the fewest chemicals in them,” she says. “Isn’t that what we eat?” Also, unless you need to block moisture because of excessive sweating (called hyperhidrosis), Dr. Zalka recommends avoiding aluminum in deodorants. “Aluminum-based antiperspirants are a lifesaver for some, but we don’t all need aluminum in our underarm care routine,” she explains. “This is available at Prevents odor without blocking sweat. Sweat is intentional; odor is preventable.” Image may contain: Cosmetics, Deodorant, Bottle, and Shaker

Image may contain: Bottle, and CosmeticsNécessaire Deodorant GelImage may contain: Soap

Ursa Major Natural Deodorant


605339310Kosas Chemistry Deodorant



6015830Malin + Goetz Eucalyptus Deodorant

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