9 Tips for Lightening Armpits After Pregnancy

Hormonal changes during pregnancy can lead to dark skin spots in the armpits. Luckily, there are ways to get rid of them.
9 Tips for Lightening Armpits After Pregnancy
Karla Henríquez

Reviewed and approved by the doctor Karla Henríquez.

Written by Thady Carabaño

Last update: 22 August, 2022

It’s common to seek natural remedies for lightening armpits — skin darkening is common during pregnancy.  These spots might manifest as charming little freckles on the cheeks to ugly dark spots in the armpits.

Of course, everything depends on the kind of skin of each woman, but this  is one of the undesired symptoms of pregnancy. The cause of their appearance is associated with hormonal changes. 

However, although they tend to disappear after the birth, you can help speed this up with the solutions we’re about to share with you.

Why do armpits darken during pregnancy?

As mentioned, many women experience skin changes during or after pregnancy. Some notice a darkening of the crotch or nipples. Others have spots in the armpits. Those with dark skin are more likely to have this problem.

As for its causes, a publication by The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists points out that the dark marks appear due to an increase in melanin in the body. Although it is something that can be very uncomfortable, it is a natural part of the process of changes that occur at this stage.

Dark Spots in the Armpits

However, these dark spots are more likely to appear in women with darker skin than those with light skin. And, admittedly, it’s also more likely that after your hormones stabilize you won’t recover your original pigmentation either.

9 tips for lightening armpits after pregnancy

Fortunately, some natural remedies can help you remove underarm stains. Continue reading to find out what they are.

1. Breast milk

Breast milk

Breast milk provides immunological benefits to the newborn. And, although it may seem strange, it is said that one of its many benefits is that it can help to lighten the spots in the armpits and other areas of the skin, which have darkened during pregnancy. Its use has no contraindications, so you can test its effects without any concern.

What should you do?

  • Simply express a little milk, apply it on the spots in the armpits and let the skin dry.
  • You can also try this remedy on other spots that appeared before pregnancy.

2. Oats

Oatmeal is a cereal to which various properties and benefits are attributed. It is widely used when making masks; it has anti-inflammatory and soothing effects and can also delay the appearance of facial hair. Moreover, some believe that its regular application can help reduce underarm spots after childbirth.

What should you do?

  • Make a paste with two tablespoons of oatmeal, a tablespoon of honey and the juice of a lemon
  • Then, put the mixture on your armpits and leave it on for about 15 minutes
  • Then, remove it by rinsing with warm water
  • This procedure can be done while the baby takes a nap and you dedicate a few minutes for you and your beauty

3. Glycerine


Glycerin is one of the main ingredients in many beauty and skin care products. This is due to its softening and moisturizing properties. Although there are no conclusive studies on its whitening effects, some people claim that glycerin could help for this purpose.

What should you do?

  • Mix in a bowl about 10 drops of glycerin, 10 drops of lemon and 10 drops of almond or olive oil
  • Then, apply this mixture on the stains under your armpits before taking a bath
  • Wait a few minutes and bathe as you normally do

4. Yogurt is great for lightening armpits after pregnancy

While it doesn’t help lighten skin blemishes, plain yogurt is a good choice for a gentle exfoliation once a week. This helps remove dead skin cells and prevents ingrown hairs, which make your underarms look darker.

What should you do?

  • Prepare a mixture with a tablespoon of natural yogurt and a tablespoon of oatmeal
  • Apply it to your underarms, massaging gently
  • Leave it on for five minutes and remove it with warm water
  • Ideally, apply a moisturizing cream at the end

5. Lemon

One of the most popular remedies to lighten blemishes is lemon, although there is no scientific evidence about it. If you decide to try it, you should be especially careful when applying it to sensitive areas such as the armpits. So it is best to start with small doses and see how you react.

What should you do?

  • Cut thick slices of lemon and rub them on your underarms
  • After 10 minutes, rinse with cold water, let dry and apply some moisturizer

6. Coconut oil

Beyond its use in cooking, coconut oil is attributed with several properties, among which are its antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial and skin moisturizing effects. In addition, it is said that it could help lighten skin darkening, including underarm spots.

What should you do?

  • Prepare a paste with coconut oil and oatmeal, put it on your underarms and leave it on for 15 minutes
  • After this time, rinse with plenty of water
Coconut oil

7. Hydrogen peroxide

Hydrogen peroxide has a stain-removing effect, due to the hydrogen peroxide in its composition. It is advisable to use water of 20 volumes, to appreciate its effects on the stains of the armpits.

Of course, it is necessary to place a little on the skin (for example, on the arm) to see if there is any reaction. If burning or hives appear, avoid using it on more sensitive areas.

How to use

  • Wash underarms thoroughly to remove sweat, dirt and impurities
  • Apply hydrogen peroxide directly or with a cotton pad
  • Leave it on for 10 minutes
  • Wash with plenty of water

8. Potato water is a good ingredient for lightening armpits after pregnancy

Raw potato water provides great benefits for the skin. Noted that this edible tuber contains vitamins B and C, as well as various minerals: calcium, potassium, sulfur.

Some think it might promote skin renewal and contribute to the reduction of blemishes. Let’s get to know the procedure.

How to use it

  • Take a large potato
  • Wash it, peel and cut into squares
  • Put it in a blender, without adding water
  • Put the puree in a fine cloth
  • Squeeze, trying to get the juice into a container
  • Wet a handkerchief with this juice and apply it on the armpits
  • Leave it on for 15 minutes and then wash it off
  • You can do this three times a day for two weeks

9. Baking soda

In addition to helping teeth, which is why it is an ingredient in toothpaste, baking soda is a natural skin whitener. It can be used on armpits, knees and elbows. In this case, we can combine it with another ingredient we already saw: lemon. Let’s see.


  • Cut a lemon in half
  • Sprinkle a little baking soda on it
  • Gently rub your armpits
  • Leave on for five minutes
  • Wash with soap and water
  • If you wish, you can apply a moisturizing cream afterwards
  • Do this twice a day for fifteen days

Note: if you notice irritation or dryness, discontinue use.

Other treatments for lightening armpits

Apart from home remedies to remove underarm stains, there are other aesthetic or dermatological treatments, which give results in less time, although they may be more expensive or invasive. Among these are:

  • Retinoids helps regulate cellular activity
  • Peelings can remove dead cells from the epidermis, renewing the skin
  • Laser is good for hair removal, detects hyperpigmentation, and takes care of it
  • Whitening creams are often based on vitamin A or D and seek to stimulate regeneration to attenuate dark areas

Can you prevent dark stains during pregnancy?

First, you should know that one of the most important measures is prevention. Therefore, it is essential to keep your skin hydrated, both with adequate fluid intake and by using moisturizing creams or lotions.

Waxing and shaving also contribute to skin darkening. With this in mind, you should evaluate whether you can space out the times you wax or shave during pregnancy.

Also, don’t forget to use a good sunscreen to prevent the effects of sun exposure from adding to the hormonal changes. At this stage, sensitivity is literally at its peak.

And although we know that these spots can be unsightly, we recommend that you don’t subject the delicate skin of the armpits to extreme lightening treatments, especially after childbirth. In this regard, deodorants containing alcohol should be avoided.

Finally, if, in addition to the stains, you have itching and irritation, visit a dermatologist to evaluate the causes and offer you a more precise solution.

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.