Rash Under Armpit


Rash under armpit can have different manifestations including itchiness, reddening of the area, pain and bad odor.  It is important to address this problem as it may be a sign of various skin diseases and other medical conditions

Causes of underarm rash

Harmful Chemicals

The most common is allergic response to some chemical that you have applied on the skin,  which may include deodorants, perfumes or soap.  Rough clothing and detergents can also be a cause for itchy armpits.  This can give rise to contact dermatitis

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Fungal Infection

Your underarms are a breeding ground for  fungus, just like other moist parts of the body like the groin.  Not keeping the area clean can cause rash under your  armpit. There are various types of fungal infestations; a dermatologist would be in the right place to advise a good quality anti-fungal cream to take care of this cause.

rash under armpit


Red armpit rash with pain and bumpiness is the cause of folluculitis. These often have an appearance of a pimple. One of the reasons that can trigger this is shaving; this activity can deteriorate the hair follicles and exacerbate the condition.

Other causes

There can be other conditions that can be attributed to itchy armpits including scabies, diabetes, syphilis and even HIV rash.

Rash Under Armpit – Treatment

In most cases, the rash will disappear but if the underarm itching increases, then you have to visit a doctor who will give you prescription medication depending on the cause.

Calamine lotion is a good topical application for rash under armpit caused by contact dermatitis. If the itching is severe, the doctor may prescribe a hydrocortisone cream that may be applied 2 to 4 times a day.   If the cause for underarm rash is a fungal one, then the doctor will not advise a hydrocortisone cream because it can worsen the condition.

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It is important to break the scratch-itch cycle; this can be done with the help of an oral antihistamine which your doctor will prescribe.  In many cases, these antihistamines are known to cause sleep or drowsiness.  If there is pain in the armpit due to the rash, the doctor may prescribe an ibuprofen  or any other pain-killer to ease the inflammation.

underarm rash pictures

How to prevent underarm rash

  1. Do not wear clothing that constricts the armpit area.
  2. If you live in warmer areas, wear loose clothing
  3. Do not wear clothes like wool that can cause itching. If you are allergic, it is better o stay away from such types of fabric
  4. Use soaps that do not contain harmful chemicals.  It is better to stay away from fragrant bathing bars.
  5. Do not shave the area if folluculitis is the cause of your underarm rash.  Doing this may well, cause an infection.  Instead use a depiliatory or a waxing cream to temporarily remove the hair
  6. Stay away from irritating deodorants, perfumes and talcum powders –  Deodorants that contain parabens, aluminum, alcohol and fragrances can trigger rash under armpit. Go for fragrant- free alternatives

Herbal Remedies for armpit rash

  1. Take one cup of oatmeal in a cotton cloth and boil. Cool it down gently and then take an oatmeal bath with a poultice that you can use as a sponge
  2. Take a slice of lemon and rub it gently under your armpits to create a deodorizing effect. This also kills the bacteria breeding in your armpits.
  3. Mix a minute quantity of baking soda with little quantity of water. Do not dissolve, just mix it a little and rub it on your armpit region.
  4. Drink lots of water, it can have a cooling effect in the area and reduce inflammation and itching. Even green tea is recommended to flush out toxins from the body. Stay away from coffee, alcohol  and such other diuretics.
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