Our bodies have all kinds of tissues, pigmentations and tones that create a consistent and unique skin tone for each of us. However, there are some individuals whose underarms tend to appear darker than the rest of their body. Underarm whitening is a popular treatment these days.
This skin condition is medically known as acanthosis nigricans (AN). AN is a condition that causes the skin to thicken and darken in specific areas of the body which have more folds. Some examples of these areas include under the arms and other joint areas. While a darker skin tone is not scientifically or medically known to pose any potential health concerns, they are a cosmetic issue which many individuals may wish to correct.
Acanthosis nigricans is much more common in people with darker skin pigmentation. The prevalence in whites is less than 1%. 
These areas may also occasionally cause incessant itchiness or emit foul odours, which may cause frustration and even a loss of self-esteem in the affected individuals. While any individual can acquire AN, it is still a skin condition influenced by other factors such as genetics. These external factors may make certain individuals more susceptible to having darker pigmentation underneath their arms.
Individuals with darker skin tones or relatives who have AN are more likely to develop AN themselves. Additionally, individuals with obesity, conditions related to insulin resistance and hormonal disorders are more likely to develop AN and have darker skin underneath their arms.
Without regular exfoliating and hygiene checks, our underarms will build up more debris, sweat and bacteria which can contribute to even more foul odour already exacerbated by AN. These factors also hamper the process of lightening the skin around the underarms.
Before testing home remedies related to skin whitening, individuals may use a clean and sharp razor to shave their underarms. To ensure maximum moisture and to prevent drying out the skin, using a fragrance-free soap to cleanse your underarms before and after shaving is crucial.
After shaving, exfoliation options such as dry brushing or even using a chemical exfoliator help to prepare the skin for lightening. Dry brushing the underarms requires a soft-bristled brush, which also promotes healthy blood circulation. A chemical exfoliator containing AHA/BHA ingredients help the underarms shed dead cells and some even have lightening effects.
There are also a wide variety of natural scrubs which have proven to lighten the skin, especially underneath the arms.
According to dermatologists and expert research, turmeric is an ingredient that possesses natural bleaching agents which lighten the underarms quickly.  In the turmeric scrub, including honey also helps to balance out the moisture retained by the underarms.
Baking powder and apple cider vinegar are ingredients that many skincare gurus are familiar with. While some may find them too strong because of the acidic qualities, when combined together, they have been proven to produce an organic salt that acts as a natural exfoliator.
Other ingredients such as potato have also been proven to possess natural bleaching ingredients. Potato is also rich in Vitamin C and helps in clearing clogged pores that harbour dead cells, bacteria and debris from external pollutants.
Both white and brown sugar have also proven to be one of the best exfoliators. Regular use of these ingredients can treat tan and clogged pores.
While home remedies are relatively cheaper than investing in clinic-type treatments, the results are often short-term and may prove to be unsuccessful if done incorrectly or inconsistently. Ultimately, it depends on what your aesthetic goals are and results may vary from individual to individual.
In previous treatment types, traditional nano or Q-switched lasers were the preferred option for patients who wanted to remove pigmentation from their skin despite the side effects.
Lasers in these treatments exposed the patient’s treatment area(s) for a longer period of time than average, and the lengthened duration of laser exposure caused a significantly larger amount of heat generated. This was potentially dangerous as harmful side effects such as blistering, scarring and discolouration could have been caused.
In some anomalies, affected patients pointed out that these previous laser treatments had not only failed to improve their skin conditions, but also made them much worse.
With improvements in aesthetic medicine, more effective whitening treatments were created, especially for more sensitive areas like the underarms. Some skin lightening and whitening procedures offered by Cambridge Medical include the Underarm Whitening treatment and the PicoCare 450 Laser Pigmentation Removal treatment.
Dr Lee Mun Heng - a certified and professional doctor at Cambridge with many years of experience in the field - also recommends this non-invasive and non-surgical treatment as a solution for those suffering from darker skin under their arms.
The Picocare 450 ND is the second generation of Picocare 450 ND: Yag. Its revamped technology is more advanced than many other picosecond laser technologies in the market. It is the first and only FDA-approved Pico laser technology that targets pigmentation removal and skin rejuvenation.
The Pico 450 Laser targets laser energy into the skin’s layers, which are absorbed by pigments. These pigments are then broken down into smaller forms, and the body’s immune response to the damaged pigmentation layer causes us to naturally remove the fragmented pigments.
The Pico Laser incorporates PicoCare 450 to speed up its treatment. It emits light pulses at a rate faster than a nanosecond and allows the treatment session to be completed at a faster rate and makes the process more effective.
The reduced number of shots needed also means less thermal heat will be generated and hence, reduced pain and little to no skin irritation post-treatment.
Pico Laser Pigmentation Removal Benefits Patients with:
Advantages of Pico Laser Pigmentation Removal:
Dark underarms can be a hassle and understandably, could greatly affect your confidence and self-esteem. If home remedies don’t seem to work, perhaps you could consider Cambridge Medical’s Underarm Whitening Treatment as a viable solution, with long-term results and minimal to no downtime.