Pubic and Underarm Skin Discolouration- Part 1
Why are my underarms and bikini-line discoloured and rough?
The appearance of skin discolouration in the underarm and pubic regions are a common concern noted with Hair Removal clients. These dark patches may be accompanied by other symptoms such as irritation, rough texture, odour, or small growths.
It is important to properly diagnose the causes of your condition in order to understand the triggers and prepare a treatment plan for silky, even-toned skin.
Possible causes of skin discolouration
1| Health Factors
Although this may not be the most common cause, underlying health conditions and medications account for a large majority of the possibilities.
- Acanthosis – a skin condition described as dark, velvety skin, in the groin, underarms, elbows, knees, neck, or groin area
- Acromegaly – a condition that causes overproduction of human growth hormone
- Cushing’s Syndrome – a condition caused by an excess production or exposure to cortisol
- Skin infections
- Excessive weight
- Human growth hormone
- Birth control
2| Genetic Influences
Hyperpigmentation or ‘dark patches’ are most prevalent in skin tones that naturally produce higher levels of melanin.
Melanin is the pigment produced by the skin cells that provides it with colour. The amount of melanin in the skin fluctuates with sun exposure and in cases of scarring. Because darker skin tones retain and produce more melanin, they are at higher risk of developing dark patches and scars.
The skin’s natural response to trauma is to repair itself in the affected area by producing fresh cells to replace the damaged cells.
Repeated friction over sensitive areas of the skin due to tight or abrasive fabrics can cause micro-trauma to the skin which in turn stimulates the repair process. The skin then forms an abundance of cells over the pressure sites giving way for the appearance of dark patches, or streaks in the skin.
4. | Shaving
Shaving the bikini line and underarms can be harsh on the sensitive skin covering these areas, especially considering these areas are often populated with fast growing hair that requires frequent shaves.
When the sharp blades of the razor glide along the skin, they make just enough contact with the skin to scrape away a thin sheet of dead skin. This can cause micro trauma to the skin, triggering the repair process which then draws pigment to the area.
Skin interaction with ingredients found in deodorant can often lead to discolouration. Aluminum compounds in deodorants keep the underarms dry by blocking the pores from excreting sweat and helps prevent odour by inhibiting the bacterial growth.
Although there are many different contributors to this skin condition, there are also various remedies that may provide relief. Stay tuned for Pt.2
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