Deodorant rash – Pictures, Symptoms, Causes, Treatment

What is Deodorant Rash?

Deodorant rash refers to an itchy, red, inflammatory skin rash which develops at the place where deodorant is applied. Sometimes, the rash may be bumpy and elicit flaking, peeling, oozing, and blistering.

Most cases of deodorant rash are caused as part of allergic reactions of increased skin sensitivity. Medical ailments like sweat glands blockage and friction may also give rise to deodorant rashes. Individuals with recurrent instances of deodorant rash must try using hypoallergenic or all natural products to treat and avoid new cases. If issue persists, then patients need to seek medical attention.

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Causes of deodorant rash

Deodorants are cosmetics that help mask body odor. They contain antiperspirants, fragrances, and chemical additives and compounds. These often trigger the skin rash, especially on sensitive skin. Deodorants are tested for safety to be used on human skin. However such tests do not take into consideration dry or sensitive skin and are usually ideal for healthy normal skin.

Some of the common causes of deodorant rash are listed below:

1. Allergies and skin sensitivity: Deodorants rash may develop as part of an allergic reaction or due to increased skin sensitivity.

  • In people with allergies, the immune system erroneously recognizes certain ingredients in deodorants as being harmful for the body and releases histamine antibodies to fight the invasion. Such action of histamine is what causes the deodorant skin rash.
    • Allergic individuals need to change over to deodorants that do not have allergens as ingredients to treat and prevent deodorant rashes. You may opt for hypoallergenic deodorants, or you may consult an allergy specialist to find the root cause of the problem.
    • Certain ingredients in deodorants can cause adverse reactions on people with sensitive skin. Such negative reactions typically lead to formation of deodorant rash. The problem will easily clear up after switching to deodorants made for sensitive skin.
      • Some of the ingredients that may cause allergic or adverse skin reactions include aluminum-based compounds; alcohol, which dries up the skin and thus causes irritation; fragrances; and a preservative called parabens.

2. Sweat glands blockage/Friction and excessive sweating: In rare instances, deodorant skin rash may develop due to reduced sweating which triggers heat rash, or due to excessive perspiration marked by increased friction. In both cases, sweat glands issues have genetic or biological causes. Usually, use of deodorants may aggravate a sweat gland issue related skin rash rather than be the actual cause of the rash.

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3. Broken or cut skin: Application of deodorants on skin areas with cuts or bruises may trigger the development of deodorant rash. It typically develops when people use deodorants just after shaving the armpits. The likelihood of rash development increases when nicks or cuts occur during shaving. Skin irritation occurs due to penetration of the compounds of deodorants into the skin via the cuts.

  • There is no need to change your deodorant brand in such cases. The rash can be treated with use of a rash treatment cream or an anti-itch ointment.

Home remedies for deodorant rash

People may use Benadryl, hydrocortisone, or calamine lotion to alleviate pain, discomfort, itchiness, or irritation associated with a deodorant rash. Patients need to stop the use of antiperspirants, deodorants, body creams, perfumes, or lotions till the skin rash has completely healed.

Listed below are some home remedies to treat deodorant skin rash and find relief from itching, inflammation, redness, pain, or tenderness:

  • Application of vitamin E oil or Aloe Vera will help soothe and ease inflammation.
  • Icepacks can help decrease itchiness.
  • Increased consumption of vitamin C will help decrease the risk to skin infections.
  • Fungal infections and itching can be overcome with the use of diluted tea tree oil.
  • Bacteria in armpits can be eliminated by placing lemon slices in the armpit. Lemon will also act as natural deodorant. Do not do this just after shaving.
  • Dry out a deodorant rash by applying some baking soda powder on it, or take a bath with some baking powder added to the water.
  • Heavy cream and crushed fresh strawberries makes the rash less visible and alleviates irritation.
  • Coconut and lavender oil mixture can help reduce skin rash irritation.
  • Paste of Neem tree leaves can act as an antibacterial and antiseptic agent.

The below listed self-care guidelines can facilitate faster recovery and help prevent deodorant rash:

  • Wear clothes that are loose and made from natural porous fibers.
  • Use a mild soap to clean the deodorant rash, at least twice a day. Ensure that proper personal hygiene is maintained.
  • If deodorant rashes occur during the summers, then make sure the rooms are well ventilated. Coolers or air-conditioning is preferable.
  • Anti-chafing powders may be used to prevent chafing.
  • Application of a layer of corn starch may help dry out the skin rash.
  • When in sedentary position, use a soft thick piece of cloth between the armpits and other places to prevent the skin from sticking together and causing friction.

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