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At Home Treatment For Armpit Acne

As if facial acne wasn't bad enough as an adult, acne can crop up anywhere on the body - even under the arm.

It's warming up across America (well, in some places) but we know that summer is coming and that means shorts, skirts, tank tops and swimsuits. The less clothing we wear, the more skin we're showing and this could be embarrassing if we have acne anywhere on the body. As recently seen on The Doctors, once such place where we could get acne is under the arm.

armpit acne
Model Photo


Following what we know about why we break out in acne, it would make sense that the armpit area gets acne. Dr. Drew Ordon does a demo of how acne under your arm can break out - the accumulation of flaky skin, stubble, and dirt mixed in with deodorant and sweat is an ideal situation for acne to crop up. Added shaving to the mix and you have clogged pores and similar to the face, clogged sebaceous pores often equals acne.

Dr. Ordon says, "You need to give the skin in your armpits facials just as you would on other parts of your body," starting with a deep cleaning of the area and then recommends using an "Armpit Facial" or a homemade astringent, not dissimilar to an astringent you would use on your face but you can make this one at home with the aid of some citrus and alcohol:

  • 1-2 tsp of lemon juice
  • 1-2 tsp of lime juice
  • 1/2 cup of rubbing alcohol


Add contents to a generic spray bottle you can get at any drugstore and after deep cleaning, spray to the armpit area to close pores and kill any potential bacteria. The acidic components of the lemon and lime juice help kill bacteria but can also help with staining that occurs from staining.

For patients that have more severe cases of acne whether it is on the face or under the arm, they may require the assistance of a professional. This type of acne may include cysts and pus that needs to be drained before any type of acne treatment can be started.

Severe armpit acne is a form of Hidradenitis Suppurativa (HS), where apocrine sweat glands in the armpit, groin or buttock areas become blocked with fluid, dead skin and other matter - causing boils which fill with pus that eventually burst. Very painful and recurring, the burst boils also often leave scars. San Diego Acne Treatment provider Dr. Tess Mauricio treats a patient by lancing the boil and injecting corticosteroids, which helps with inflammation and brings down the boil before it can burst and scar. However, Dr. Mauricio points out this treatment is not a permanent cure but requires follow up visits to a physician for future flare ups.