7 Main Reasons for black underarms

Black underarms are a common issue and many people actually want to do something about it. What most people actually don’t know, is how to do it without spending money on expensive treatments or choosing a routine that might not work.

There are two main reasons why people suffer from black underarms. The first one, and the more obvious reason, is that they sweat more than normal and the excess sweat settles on their skin and turns black when exposed to air. The second reason has to do with genetics – it seems that some people are just born with melanin-rich skin which makes them prone to get darker underarms.

Do you want to get rid of the black underarms? There are numerous reasons that can make your underarms black, however, this article will help you solve all of them! Here are some tips and tricks you can use at home to eliminate black underarms without spending too much money, time or effort! Do not forget to follow these simple steps and don’t forget to share it with your friends! Good luck!

Causes of black underarms

black underarms
A woman raising her arm

Many people are conscious of their armpits and how they look in different types of clothing and most especially for ladies. If you notice that your armpits are black, do not freak out because it is normal and could be due to a number of things that you are not aware of. The most common causes for dark armpit stains include the following: 

1. Sweat.

One reason why people develop black underarms is due to sweating. It is well known that excessive sweating can result in bacterial infections and black armpits. To avoid that, observe good hygiene and also exfoliate when you can.

Underarms need to be exfoliated occasionally, just like any other part of the body. Exfoliate once or twice every month to prevent dark underarms from being a result of sweat, dead skin accumulation, and product buildup.

2. Shaving.

black underarms
Shaved underarms

Shaving can also be a reason for black underarms. As we all know, hair removal is one of the common hygiene tips to help reduce body odor. However, if this is done in the wrong way, in our case, shaving, it can lead to black underarms. 

Usually, shaving the underarms frequently causes an excessive generation of pigment cells, resulting in dark underarms. Shaving causes irritation and when this happens, the underarms turn black. In most cases, waxing is preferred to avoid black underarms. 

3. Deodorant residue from a previous application and/or deodorant use.

Poor hygiene is a common cause because sweat and bacteria from your armpits can mix with body oils and lead to darkening. The bacteria forms as a result of previous deodorant residue. It’s important to take care of yourself by making sure you’re showering, using deodorant, and wearing clean clothing on a daily basis to prevent this from happening.

4. Some antiperspirants.

If you’ve been using an antiperspirant that contains aluminum zirconium tricholorohydrex gly as its active ingredient then it might be time to switch. These products have been linked to hyperpigmentation which causes the darkening effect.

5. Darker skin tone 

The darker your skin tone is, the more likely you’ll notice discoloration when applied to lighter areas such as the underarms.

Some people have excess pigmentation on the skin, and this may cause the area to appear darker than others. For instance, those who have dark skin might find that a significant amount of pigment makes their armpits appear much darker than someone who has light skin.

Affected by genetics and hormone levels, hyperpigmentation can occur because melanocytes (cells) produce more pigment than normal. As a result, hyperpigmentation results from an increase in melanin formation brought on by the presence of the enzyme tyrosinase. Underarm Hyperpigmentation also known as melasma results from exposure to UV rays and hormones such as progesterone and estrogen.

If any of these situations apply to you, it is possible that your body chemistry is what’s causing the darkness. Consult with a doctor or dermatologist if necessary.

 6. Certain medications.

black underarms

Certain medications such as birth control pills or antidepressants may also cause darkening in some people who are predisposed to hyperpigmentation issues already. 

7. Skin conditions.

Conditions such as vitiligo or liver disease could also result in darkened underarm areas due to increased pigmentation or decreased melanin production respectively.


As discussed above, we have seen that black underarms can be caused by a couple of things. Therefore, it is usually a good idea to first understand what is causing your underarms to get black in order to be able to address that.  Do you have any additional information on black underarms? Feel free to share with us in the comment section.

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