There is one persistent beauty crisis that makes me doubt I know what I’m doing with my life. I am long overdue for a fantastic natural remedy for removing bumps underneath armpits that are unsightly and even painful. Every few months, I completely screw up whilst shaving and end up with a hard tiny lump under my armpit — and it literally becomes the bane of my existence. Sometimes, these lumps last only a few days and go away on their own; those are the times when I truly believe in miracles. More often than not though, that hard bump stays with me varying in size and pain.
Luckily, it turns out that getting rid of bumps under your arms is incredibly easy, cheap, and won’t cause any additional irritation to the already-sensitive skin in your pits. Let’s get real here: It’s summer, and I want to be in sleeveless everything forever. I also don’t want any lumps showing up in those Instagram pics at the beach.
The most common cause of those pesky bumps is shaving, but even people who don’t shave (or shave less frequently) may find themselves with a case of the bumps due to the dark, dank environment of all armpits, especially if your hair is super coarse. My most recent hard lump was bestowed upon me because of some natural deodorant I was testing for a client. I shaved after I had already applied the stuff, even though I should have known better. I deserved the lump, but I still wanted to get rid of it as quickly as I could.
According to sources at the US National Library of Medicine, armpit lumps can become inflamed due to cysts or infection. Shaving over existing lumps can definitely lead to infection, so it's best to work out a solution ASAP. Typically, these lumps are harmless and are caused by ingrown hairs that become trapped then covered by new skin, which causes inflammation. If you are questioning your bump, check with your doctor to make sure it isn’t a more serious condition. According to sources at Web MD, these lumps can become painful and even infected. If it turns into a cyst, you’ll have to get it drained of fluid. Not an ideal way to start the summer.
Fortunately, there are some DIY remedies for lumps under the armpit from shaving, skin products, or using your armpit as a science experiment (oops). In addition to these natural treatments, be sure to stop shaving until the trapped hair grows out naturally. Exfoliating under the armpits on the reg is the best way to avoid trapped hairs in the first place, and you should be cleaning and changing your razor regularly.
1. Lemon and Vodka Astringent
Real Lemon 100% Lemon Juice, $5, Amazon This has actually been an aftershave go-to of mine for a while. I’ve found that the astringent properties of both lemon and vodka are a quick, easy way to bring that lump down. Just use equal parts of fresh lemon juice and vodka on your bump and then apply a healing moisturizer before you put your deodorant on for the day.
2. Green Tea Ice Cubes and Tea Tree Oil
Ice cubes are one of my fave ways to get rid of inflammation, especially after any squeezing or tweezing of those lumps. Brew green tea and pour into an ice try until frozen. Dip your ice cube in tea tree and apply on the lump until the ice cube melts (yes, it takes time). Repeat twice daily until your lump has disappeared.
3. Apple Cider Vinegar and Eucalyptus
Apple cider vinegar is a warrior at treating infections, acne, cysts, and ingrown hairs. One of my favorite ways to not smell like feet when using ACV is to add refreshing eucalyptus, which is also antiseptic and incredibly healing. Use a warm washcloth to dab the solution on your bumps twice daily after showering and you’ll be lump-free in no time at all.
Image: kazzakova/Fotolia; Giphy; Kristin Collins Jackson