Itchy, irritated underarms are a real nuisance, especially during the warmer months when you're eager to go sleeveless. Your sensitive armpits may protest against shaving, but that doesn't mean you need to give up the razor to get relief. You can stop the irritation by shaving properly and by treating your skin with some soothing products afterward.
Stop shaving your armpits temporarily if they're itchy or inflamed. Give the skin time to heal.
Wet your underarms before shaving to help prevent cuts and rashes from developing. Avoid shaving armpits when they're dry. Always use shaving cream or gel.
Use a sharp, clean razor each time you shave. Dull razors are more likely to cause skin irritation. In general, it's best to replace a razor after two weeks of use.
Apply an over-the-counter hydrocortisone cream to the irritated skin. It will soothe itching, redness and rashes. Use the cream for up to five days or until the rash disappears.
Wait for at least 20 minutes after shaving before putting on antiperspirant or deodorant.
Use a fragrance- and alcohol-free antiperspirant to avoid causing further irritation. If your antiperspirant makes the itching worse, switch to another one that contains different active ingredients. Alternatively, try using antiperspirant-free deodorant or crystal deodorant. When you're at home, try to skip the antiperspirant unless you really need it.
Apply a dab of moisturizer to each underarm after shaving. Use a moisturizer that contains aloe for best results.
Wear breathable garments, such as cotton T-shirts, to allow fresh air to reach your skin. Constricting clothes may cause you to sweat, leading to more skin irritation. Breathable fabrics help prevent skin from sweating as much.
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- If irritation continues even after treatment, see your doctor or a dermatologist. Persistent irritation may signal an infection.
Melissa King began writing in 2001. She spent three years writing for her local newspaper, "The Colt," writing editorials, news stories, product reviews and entertainment pieces. She is also the owner and operator of Howbert Freelance Writing. King holds an Associate of Arts in communications from Tarrant County College.