I noticed only her armpits.
I don’t remember. It was the opening credits of a Disney show from the 2000s, but I can’t for the life of me remember its name, possibly because I was distracted by the actor’s armpits.
They were flawless! No hair, no burns — they were as smooth as a baby’s bottom! I know, I know, what a weird thing to notice, but I was a teenager who just discovered my armpits. I wanted to know what to do about them.
Since then, I have trialled and erred, only to grow into this adult with a fascination with flawless armpits. If you are still reading, here are three useful steps I’ve learned in my pursuit of the perfect armpit:
1. Shave your armpits
You can consider plucking your armpit hair, but that would be more time-consuming and painful. If done incorrectly, it might even cause scarring. I learned the last part the hard way.
Thus, shaving is quicker, easier, and (arguably) safer.
But don’t just grab the first razor you find and simply run it across your skin. I mean, I learned that the hard way too.
Razor burns are a horrible thing! Not only are they aesthetically not ideal, but they are also uncomfortable.
With that in mind, here are some tips to avoid razor burns:
- Use a clean, fresh razor
- Shave in a warm shower to soften the hair first
- Use shaving cream or shaving cream alternatives
- Shave in the direction of the grain to prevent irritation
- Afterwards, pat your armpits with a towel
- Don’t shave every day
Sometimes, sh*t happens. If you get a razor burn anyway, fret not. Just apply aloe vera or coconut oil for relief.
2. Exfoliate your armpits
You might notice flesh-coloured bumps on your armpits. This could be caused by ingrown hairs. The solution is to exfoliate — to even out the pores so that the ingrown hairs surface.
It is especially important to exfoliate if you shave. Exfoliation sheds the dead skin cells from your skin and removes the bacteria. To exfoliate, use a loofah to scrub your underarms with a body scrub, or a facial cleanser if you have sensitive skin.
3. Perfume your armpits
Fortunately, we are living organisms. Unfortunately, this means that we get body odour when we sweat and the bacteria on the surface of our skin breaks down the proteins.
Of course, a good old deodorant solves this problem. Spray or roll-on, the choice is yours. Each has its own merits.
While a deodorant covers the odour, an antiperspirant reduces your sweat. Both are to be applied to the underarms and the two are often combined into a single product.
Alternatively, if you prefer to DIY, there are home remedies you could opt for instead:
- Use rock salt
Dissolve some rock salt in a bucket of lukewarm water to bathe in. The salt has cleansing properties.
- Spray apple cider vinegar
Mix one cup of apple cider vinegar with half a cup of water. Every night, spray it on your armpits before sleeping. Wash it off in the morning.
- Use a potato
Rub a thin slice of potato on your underarms for 30 minutes. Rinse the area after you’re done.
- Apply baking soda with lemon
Mix two tablespoons of baking soda with one tablespoon of lemon juice. Massage the paste on your armpits for 10 minutes in a circular motion. Wash your underarms after you’re done.
- Use tomato juice
Apply a mixture of tomato and lemon juice around your armpits for 10 minutes. Wash it off afterwards too.
But alas! Who am I to define a flawless armpit? A beautiful armpit is in the eyes of the beholder. So you do you. Follow my suggestions, or not. Either way, your armpit is beautiful.
Chow Ping Lee is a content writer under Headliner by Newswav, a programme where content creators get to tell their unique stories through articles and at the same time monetize their content within the Newswav app.
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