8 Ways To Brighten Up Dark Underarms

Wondering how to get rid of dark underarms? Not only do they make you feel conscious while wearing sleeveless clothes, but also while wearing a swimsuit or going to a salon for other treatments. However, to understand how to get rid of dark underarms, you first need to understand the causes.

You might have noticed that famous deodorant brands are running campaigns that promise to whiten underarms. However, getting rid of darker underarms is not as easy as we think it is. While these might help to a degree, deodorants are responsible for darker underarms in the first place. So, to understand how to get rid of dark underarms, you need to understand what could be causing dark underarms in the first place.

 Top 6 Causes For Dark Armpits:

It comes as no surprise that so many women have dark underarms, because there are more than a few factors that contribute to this problem.

1 . Shaving

When you use a razor to shave, you cut off hair just below the surface of the skin. Shaving results in unsightly stubble, which gives the illusion that you have darker underarms. The same goes for hair removal creams like Anne French or Veet. Both of these also remove hair on the surface only, which makes the underarms look darker. The fact that shaving results in ingrown hair also further contributes to the problem. Instead, try waxing as it removes the hair from the root itself.

2 . Dead Cells

Darker underarms could very well be the result of dead cells accumulation on your underarms. All you need to do is exfoliate gently, either by using a loofah or scrubs with lactic acid.

3 . Using Deodorants and Antiperspirants Excessively

Many theories reveal that the chemical compounds in strong deodorants could be the reason for darker underarms. This leads to pigmentation, which can result in permanently darker armpits. To change that, use deos for sensitive skin or resort to natural methods for dealing with underarm odour.

4 . Friction

Sometimes, when we wear tight clothes on a daily basis, the friction between the material and your armpits can lead to darkening. To reverse the damage, switch to looser clothes and fabrics that breathe easily in the summer. Basically, fat accumulated under the arm rubs against fabric and causes darkening. Losing weight will also help.

5 . Hereditary Factors

Sometimes, hereditary factors can be the cause for darkened underarms. It could be excessive weight gain, hormonal factors that result in pigmentation or even the use of birth control pills. In such cases, visit the doctor to get professional advice as your problem is much deeper than just dark underarms.

6 . Diabetes

What many people don’t realize is that diabetes also causes pigmentation, resulting in darker underarms. The best way to deal with this is to maintain optimum insulin levels and try natural remedies.

8 Top Ways To Get Rid Of Dark Underarms:

Now that we know what could be causing darker underarms, let us focus on how to get rid of them.

1.  Waxing Or Electrolysis

The biggest reason for dark underarms is shaving or using hair removal creams. Instead, try waxing. It will hurt more, but at least the hair will be removed from the root and your underarms will appear fairer immediately. Waxing also works as an exfoliating method. For those who want to get rid of underarm hair for good, electrolysis is another permanent option. In time, the darkened patches under the arm will lighten.

Recommended products: Philips Epilator | Braun Silk Epil 3 Soft Perfection Epilator | Philips Satinelle Epilator

2.  Lemon Juice

One of the most effective ways to lighten underarms is to rub them with lemon juice every day before taking a bath. Lemon is a natural bleaching agent and will slowly lighten the area. After your bath, use moisturizer to soften the skin and skip the deodorant for a few days.

Recommended products: Nair Hair Removal Spray

3.  Lightening Masks

To get rid of dark underarms, make a homemade whitening pack or buy one at the market. If you want to prepare the mask at home, mix a handful of gram flour with yogurt, lemon and a little turmeric powder. Keep it for 15-20 minutes, and then wash it off. If you want to buy a readymade mask – try any clay-based lightening skin mask.

Recommended products: Auravedic Skin OilLotus Herbals Whiteglow Yogurt Skin Whitening & Brightening Masque

4.  Potato and cucumber

Potato also works as a natural bleaching agent. You can either rub underarm skin with thinly sliced potatoes, or grate the potato and apply the juice to the affected area. Leave it on for 15 minutes and wash. You will notice that soon the underarm skin appears to be lighter in colour. Similarly, you can grate a cucumber and apply the juice under your arms.

Recommended products: Fabindia Gel PackJiva Cream

5.  Saffron Mixture

An effective home remedy that works in two ways is mixing a pinch of saffron in two spoonfuls of milk or cream and applying to the underarms before bed. Keep this for the whole night, and wash off the next morning. Not only does this lightens the underarms, but also kills all germs and bacteria that cause underarm odour.

Recommended products: Vaadi Herbals Cleansing CreamJiva Saffron Cream

6.  Less Usage of deodorants

Since we know that your deodorant or antiperspirant could be the reason you have darker underarms, give them a miss. Instead, try natural remedies to combat body odour for a few days. You can mix baking soda with a little water and wipe the underarms with this solution. Anti-fungal powders and alum are also great alternatives. Once your underarms look lighter, shift to specialised whitening deos or deos made especially for sensitive skin.

Recommended products: Nivea Deodorant

7.  Try Sandalwood and Rose Water

Another great way to treat dark underarms naturally is to create a paste of sandalwood with rose water. While the sandalwood has lightening properties, the rose water will cool down the skin and make it softer. Leave the paste for a few minutes before washing it off and use this every day to see a difference.

8. Whitening Scrubs

If your dark underarms are a result of dead cell accumulation, the best way to treat this is to use whitening scrubs. Select a scrub for sensitive skin, such as Nivea, St Ives and Everyuth Naturals.

Recommended products: Auravedic Pure Lightening Skin PolishVotre Gel Exfoliance Skin Polishing Scrub

  • Gandreti

    Nice information. Thanks:-)

  • Name *shuganti

    it really really very useful:)

  • Elizabeth

    Gr8 information:-) thanks a ton

  • Ruzlyn

    is it okay that i will use olay moisturizer to skip the dry skin on my underarm??

    im just a cheap person cant afford for the things that you have said but is it ok that i will just use lemon and the moisturizer i have no money!!!?

    • http://healthkart.com Sabuj Biswas

      Hello Ruzlyn,

      Why don’t you start with using lemon juice everyday/ applying slices of potato/cucumber?
      You may use the anti-dark patch creams if they don’t work. Going natural is always the best solution to problems.

    • namrata

      is there any other underpit hair removal method other than waxing … plssss help
      i cant wax

      • http://healthkart.com Divya Girotra

        You can bleach your armpit or just use a hair removal cream (the mildest one).

  • Naomi

    What is the alternative for gram flour? Can I use All-Purpose Flour?

    • http://healthkart.com Sabuj Biswas

      Dear Naomi,

      We would prefer you using Gram flour for the same.


  • http://google.com joyline

    really needed a advice thnx for the site ill surely try it

  • Yazmin

    Thanks this is really useful :)

  • http://www.yourphysicalhealth.net/ Xihlamariso

    Thanks for these awesome tips . . . most people do not have a clue what actually causes the dark underarms, and I like that you have laid it out so nicely, from what causes them to what can be done to get rid of them. great post!

  • http://www.healthkart.com/resources/8-ways-brighten-dark-underarms/ Shallu

    Great info… thanx a lot for the advice, will definitely try… :)

  • Arifa

    Great information…will try

  • jeannette

    very nice. the advises isnt that costly. Hope this works. thanks much

  • nEy

    thanks..i will try those natural ways.

    IS IT REALLY works using that nivea

    • http://www.healthkart.com Paridhi Singh

      Hey nEy,
      Try using nivea along with the natural therapy. The natural therapy works wonders.

  • http://facebook.com/jaymarportusa JM

    Can the moisturizer prevent the bad odor ?

    • http://healthkart.com Divya Girotra

      It’s better to go for a home remedy than using creams/moisturizers. Even a mild powder can help.

  • Rio

    Ow many days/weeks till it get whiter if I’m using the potato?

    • http://healthkart.com Divya Girotra

      The best part about potatoes are- they don’t cause any irritation. You can try it for 1-2 months (once per week).

  • Regine

    What kind of moisturizer should I use? My armpit is REALLY REALLY sensitive, and I’ve also asked some of my friends of how to get rid armpit hair without darkening my armpits furthermore. She said that waxing is quite difficult because you need someone who really knows how to wax if not the armpit hair will just grow uglier. What should I do? PLEASE HELP!

    • http://healthkart.com Divya Girotra

      Waxing removes tanning. It pains when done for the first time but is much better than the hair removal creams. Visit a good salon(or where you usually go/your friend goes). And you can also try the above mentioned tips.

  • Anagha

    Such a useful tips

  • abegailjoyce

    Can I use calamansi instead of lemon? :)

    • Swapnil Ghildiyal

      Yes you can use Calamansi juice instead of Lemon juice as both of them contains bleaching properties.

  • shalu sharma

    Does it really work? bcz i m so worried about this,i can’t wear sleeveless clothes… what is the best method naturally which can remove darkening fast…….?????

    • Swapnil Ghildiyal

      Hi Shalu,
      The best and the easiest way to reduce darkening of underarms is to rub them with lemon juice everyday before taking bath.

  • Name *Pravitha

    Useful Information… Thanks:) will try.

  • aleena

    any alternative for saffron?

    • http://healthkart.com Divya Girotra

      Aleena, try out the potato and cucumber mixture. That is really effective.

  • sunaina

    does this work???

    • http://healthkart.com Divya Girotra

      Yes Sunaina, it surely does. Plus, these are all safe to try.

  • SK

    Does epilation of underarms worsen dark underarms?

    • Swapnil Ghildiyal

      Hi SK,
      If you are using branded epilators, you need not fear. However, make sure that you clean, scrub and moisturize your underarms and not shave them much.

  • http://www.caretricks.com Sara

    The potato and cucumber tip has really worked for me.

    • Swapnil Ghildiyal

      Hi Sara,
      We are glad it worked for you. Cheers :)

  • http://www.adonlinebook.com shaina

    I tried this lemon remedy…its realy nice and feel free to use..

    • http://www.healthkart.com paridhi.singh@healthkart.com

      Hey Shaina,
      Great it worked for you.

  • annie

    ya it is really very useful for me….thanks a lot for this informative post.

  • Shivani

    thanks…hope these will for me…

  • Shivani

    thanx..hope these will work 4 me..

  • Cristy

    Why don’t you combine some of these remedies? For example, blend lemon juice, cucumber, and potato with cream or milk, as well as scrubbing, waxing, and then moisturizing? I highly suggest doing this at night, so you can leave off the deodorant and give your skin several hours to soak in the lotion or whatever you put on it. I’ve done waxing, but it leaves your skin sensitive at times, so body oils are much better than lotions, since oils have less chemicals than lotion.

    • Ashyin Thakral


      Thanks much for your suggestion


  • d

    Can i use tweezers instead of wax? Thanks:)

    • http://www.healthkart.com paridhi.singh@healthkart.com

      Tweezers/ Epilators pluck the hair from the root, just like waxing but waxing is still far more recommended, since it takes out all the dead cells that are there.
      Hope this helps.

  • Loiwannagetridofthesepatches!

    I dnt ever use deodrants. But i do shave. I consulted d dermotoligist and guess what? He didnt gave me any cream to lighten it. Instead he said i’ve fungal infection. I used d dusting powder he gave but it shows no sign of development. I read abt using jhonsonbaby oil. And i’ve started using it, hoping for gud results. Also abt d lemon thing i used it fo a week but it showed no sign :( iam thinking of trying potatoes. But hw can we make juice of it? Pls iam sick of this dark patches.

    • http://www.healthkart.com paridhi.singh@healthkart.com

      Very easy! You just have to slice potato in very thin and fine slices and rub it on your skin. Also, whatever you are using, be it potato, lemon or cucumber, let it stay for 15-20 minutes before washing it away:)
      Hope it helps :)

  • http://www.facebook.com/imanggeltwinkle Gelyn

    Is it okay to use Veet? It’s a wax that my Auntie often bought.

    • http://www.healthkart.com paridhi.singh@healthkart.com

      It is not recommended, since veet/ anne french or any other hair removal creams/ waxing strips have artificial chemicals which can darken the skin even further.

  • shamz

    thank u very much for the advice hope it works and i will give it a try and hopefully it will work.
    thank u very much :)

  • http://www.nodarklips.com Dark Underarms

    you have nice blogs

  • Jennifer Hutchins

    hey, how do we prepare the lemon? should i just slice it up and rub it around my underarm, and leave it for how long?

    • http://www.healthkart.com paridhi.singh@healthkart.com

      Hey, you’ll be glad it’s that easy! Just slice a lemon into two, take one half and squeeze it little by little on the area and rub it with the same, for 15-20 minutes or you could also squeeze it into a bowl and apply the juice on your underarms and wash it off after 20 minutes.

  • http://Healthkart.com Abitha

    Does it really works?

    • http://healthkart.com Divya Girotra

      Yes Abitha, I have tried them too. Give it a chance and see for yourself.

  • shahrukh

    Thanks for the helpful information.

  • Lolry

    Does lime work like lemon?

    • http://healthkart.com Divya Girotra

      Lemon(the yellow one) works better!

  • anliza

    not that good wouldnt try it again

    • http://healthkart.com Divya Girotra

      We apologize for the same Anika! But could you please tell us what exactly went wrong?

  • pradeep rajput

    Great information.
    It works.
    Thanks a lot..

  • Anita Nadar

    Simple steps to combat darkening….I m going to try surely..hope this is useful…as i m dealing with dark underarms for quite some time nw..i hv stopped wearing sleeveless dresses

  • paige

    im really got bad black underarm had it for like 10years i never wear a singlet or shortarm clothes wish cn come off what should i use? plz help me,,

    • http://healthkart.com Divya Girotra

      Hi Paige…You can start with the above mentioned home remedies like using lemon juice, potato, cucumber or sandalwood. These would surely help. And don’t use hair removal creams for the armpit. They will just keep darkening the skin.

  • Danielle


    May we ask if what kind of wax are we going to use?

    Can you give us idea what brand of wax.

    Thank you :)

    • http://healthkart.com Divya Girotra

      Different parts require different wax. For the armpits, go for a wax that’s mild and herbal.

  • http://facebook.com lovely


    thanks for that wonderful information , i hope it helps me

    how if i need to use deodorant?
    cause my underarm is weat ..

    please help me ,

    • http://www.healthkart.com Apurva Sarin


      we’d suggest you to start with a high-quality antiperspirant Deo to get rid of sweaty armpits


  • Victoria G

    Would lemon juice (from the bottle) work or does it have to be from a freshly squeezed lemon

  • Okky Handayani

    Is this applicable to inner thigh/ butt cleft?