What can be the causes of pigmentation on the underarms?

Pigmentation on the underarms, also known as dark underarms, can be caused by various factors. It’s important to note that while some causes may be related to lifestyle habits or temporary conditions, others could be indicative of underlying medical concerns. Here are some common causes of pigmentation on the undera

Shaving or Waxing

Frequent shaving or waxing of the underarm area can lead to skin irritation and inflammation, which may result in darkening of the skin over time.


Constant friction from tight clothing or other materials can cause irritation and lead to darkening of the skin.

Deodorants and Antiperspirants

Some deodorants and antiperspirants contain chemicals that can cause skin irritation and pigmentation, especially if applied immediately after shaving.


Increased production of melanin (skin pigment) can cause hyperpigmentation. Hormonal changes, genetics, and sun exposure can contribute to this condition.

Acanthosis Nigricans

This is a skin condition characterized by dark, thickened patches of skin. It’s often associated with insulin resistance and can be a sign of underlying medical conditions such as diabetes or hormonal imbalances.


Overweight individuals may experience skin friction in the underarm area, leading to darkening.

Post-Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation

Any form of skin inflammation or injury, such as from burns, cuts, or other skin conditions, can lead to dark spots as the skin heals.

Hormonal Changes

Hormonal fluctuations, such as during pregnancy or certain medical conditions, can trigger changes in skin pigmentation.

Lack of Proper Skincare

Neglecting proper skincare for the underarm area, such as exfoliation and moisturization, can contribute to darkening.

Allergic Reactions

Allergies to certain skincare products or fabrics can cause irritation and darkening.

Excessive Sun Exposure

Sun exposure can cause the skin to produce more melanin in response to protect itself, leading to hyperpigmentation.

Medical Conditions

Certain medical conditions, such as Addison’s disease or polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), can cause changes in skin pigmentation.

Common Causes of Underarm Pigmentation

  • Shaving or Waxing
  • Friction
  • Deodorants and Antiperspirants
  • Hyperpigmentation
  • Acanthosis Nigricans
  • Obesity
  • Post-Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation
  • Hormonal Changes
  • Lack of Proper Skincare
  • Allergic Reactions
  • Excessive Sun Exposure
  • Medical Conditions