From what causes a sensitive armpit to rashes, razors & underarm exfoliation, here are eight tips to help you take care of your sensitive underarms

This article is sponsored by Dove

Most people see deodorant as an essential part of their beauty routine. Not only does it help ward off any less than favourable body odours, but some can actually prevent us from working up a sweat completely, so you can go about your day with no worries of smells or stains.

But it’s less than ideal when a deodorant or antiperspirant causes your armpits to become dry, itchy or cause a rash. The skin under our arms is delicate and needs the same level of care and attention as we would give our face. We’ve put together some handy tips for sensitive armpits to help you feel comfortable every day.

1.     Remember to cleanse your underarms

It might sound obvious, but make sure you’re not forgetting to gently wash your underarms in the shower or bath. Our underarms are prone to moisture due to the folding of the skin, and a lack of airflow means bacteria and impurities are more able to cling on to the surface. Washing your underarms each day also helps to remove any build-up of antiperspirants or deodorants and any excess oils. Make sure you’re using a gentle cleanser or body wash to do so, avoiding any harsh ingredients which may cause more irritation.

2.     Moisturise them, too

Just like our face and body, our underarm skin needs hydrating to feel its best. As the skin is extremely delicate, moisturising your underarms can help you avoid dryness, flakiness, irritation or even skin darkening. You don’t need to do this every day – just often enough to keep your skin feeling soft.

3.     Try exfoliation

Once a week, tackle clogged pores and a build-up of dead skin cells by gently exfoliating your underarms with a body mitt or brush. Make sure to use a light hand when doing so, especially if your skin is already irritated, to avoid breaking or tearing the skin in any way. If your skin is super sensitive to manual or physical scrubs, you might consider trying a touch of a chemical exfoliator instead, like glycolic acid, to slough away any dead skin cells or impurities.

4.     Use a gentle deodorant formula

Some deodorant formulas contain chemicals and fragrances that can be irritating to the skin, or that contribute to blocking your pores. If you suffer with sensitivity, take a look at the ingredients list before you buy and choose a formula that contains the least chemicals or one that will help moisturise your skin as it works. It’s important not to overdo it with your deodorant, too – listen to your underarms, if it’s leaving too much residue on your skin or it’s beginning to cause itching or irritation, try applying slightly less product or leave longer between applications.

Try: Dove Advanced Care Original Antiperspirant Deodorant

With its kindest to skin formula, the new addition to the Dove Advanced Care range features a triple moisturising technology that works to protect your underarms for up to 72 hours and provide a long-lasting fragrance.

5.     Wear breathable fabrics

Not only do breathable fabrics like cotton and linen help keep you cooler in warm weather, but they’re also less likely to cause a rash or irritation in your armpit. As synthetic fibres like polyester, nylon and spandex don’t allow as much air to pass through them, you’re more likely to work up a sweat when wearing them, potentially leading to itchiness or rashes.

6.     Wash your clothes with laundry products suitable for sensitive skin

Just like artificial or synthetic fragrances in your deodorant can be irritating to the skin, the same can be said for your washing detergent or fabric conditioners. When choosing for a product to use with your next load of whites or colours, look for a formula that’s suitable for sensitive skin. It’s worth keeping in mind that the stain-removing enzymes in bio detergent can be a cause of irritation for some with more sensitive or dry skin, so opt for a non-bio formula instead.

7.     Change your razor regularly

If you like to shave your underarms, it’s important to regularly change your razor to keep your skin free of irritation. By changing it every couple of weeks, this reduces bacteria and other debris building up on the blade and causing irritation or a shaving rash.

8.     Give yourself a break from shaving

If you notice any dryness, itching or a red, irritated rash, then it might be a good idea to put down the razor for a few days to give your skin time to recover, making sure you continue to cleanse and hydrate the area in the meantime. If you find you’re continuously struggling with irritated or sensitive underarms after shaving but want to continue removing your armpit hair, then you could consider alternate methods of hair removal like waxing or laser hair removal instead.