Benzoyl peroxide is known for its ability to kill acne-causing bacteria, but can it also kill the bacteria that cause underarm and body odor?
Benzoyl peroxide works by getting deep into the pores to unclog them, kill bacteria, and exfoliate the skin. It can be an intensive treatment for sensitive skin. So what about the armpits?
Can You Put Benzoyl Peroxide On Your Armpits
Yes, you can put benzoyl peroxide on your armpits, but this needs to be done cautiously.
Keep in mind that your underarm skin is usually thinner and much more sensitive than your face or other parts of your body.
Benzoyl peroxide is an active ingredient that can cause irritation, so it is best to start small and slow.
Will Benzoyl Peroxide Help With Underarm and Body Odor
Yes, benzoyl peroxide will help to reduce underarm and body odor with constant use.
Benzoyl peroxide is antimicrobial, cleansing, and exfoliating.
It will kill odor-causing bacteria, unclog the pores from sweat and oil, and removes dead skin cells which can all accumulate and contribute to bad body odor.
Benefits of Benzoyl Peroxide For Underarms
When benzoyl peroxide is used correctly, it has great benefits for the skin (even underarm skin):
1- It kills bacteria
This is especially helpful on the face, but even on your underarms, it can help to prevent the overgrowth and accumulation of bacteria that can cause your armpits to smell when they are left to interact with the sweat and oil on your skin.
2- It exfoliates the skin
This makes the armpit smoother and promotes the regeneration of healthier skin cells. If you have discoloration, exfoliation will also gradually help to even your skin tone. Regular exfoliation also prevents the build-up of dead skin cells which can contribute to armpit odor.
3- It unclogs your pores
This is a great benefit for people with acne-prone skin. And yes, you can get armpit acne! Benzoyl peroxide will keep your pores clean, which will either improve or prevent armpit acne and oily skin.
How To Use Benzoyl Peroxide For Underarms
Benzoyl peroxide comes in many concentrations and formulations. The key is to choose the right kind for your skin and know how to use it.
What Concentration Of Benzoyl Peroxide Is Best For Underarms
Dermatologists recommend starting with the lowest concentration of benzoyl peroxide on your underarms.
The most common starting concentration when using benzoyl peroxide for underarms is usually 2.5% to 5%.
Stronger concentrations are also available (up to 10%) over the counter, but they should be used under the guidance of a skincare professional or dermatologist. They should also not be used as the initial treatment if you are new to this ingredient.
Since your underarm skin is more sensitive than elsewhere, it is best to start small and gradually work your way up.
Using a concentration that is too strong can cause irritation and damage to your underarm skin.
What Formulation Of Benzoyl Peroxide Is Best For Underarms
Benzoyl Peroxide is most commonly available as a wash, gel, or serum. The best one for you will depend on your skin.
Since washes can be applied for a short time and rinsed off, while still allowing the product to penetrate the skin adequately. This is why many experts recommend that you start with using a Benzoyl Peroxide wash for your armpits.
When your underarm skin has gotten used to the wash (when you can use it daily without any irritation), you can work your way up to a leave-on gel or serum if necessary.
More is not often better and sometimes, sticking to a wash can be quite adequate for your skin.
However, other people, especially those with active acne, might need to use a leave-on formulation, like the gel or serum.
How Often Should You Use Benzoyl Peroxide For Underarms
The right frequency of use for benzoyl peroxide on your underarms will depend on your skin’s reaction.
If you have oily, acne-prone skin, experts suggest starting by using a benzoyl peroxide wash 2-3 times a week. Then you can gradually work your way up to using it once daily (twice if necessary or if you have active armpit acne).
If the wash is not working for you, or your acne is not going away, then you can start by using a gel or serum for a few hours and then eventually, all day.
If you have dry skin or very sensitive skin, it is best to start by using a benzoyl peroxide wash 1-2 times per week. Always ensure to moisturize as much as needed. If you need to use a gel or serum, start by using it 1-2 times a week, for an hour (wash off after an hour). You may gradually increase how long you leave it on your skin and eventually how often you use it.
Here, a dermatologist recommends that you include a benzoyl peroxide wash in your routine along with other helpful tips for smelly underarms:
Doctorpedia – Armpit Odor – What To Do About It
Best Benzoyl Peroxide Products For Underarms
1- PanOxyl Antimicrobial Acne Creamy Wash, 4% Benzoyl Peroxide
The creamy cleanser, which experts advise using, cleans and unclogs pores to clear up current outbreaks. When applied as a daily acne treatment regimen, it can aid in the prevention of new blemishes from developing.
Emollients are combined with the recipe to provide a more moisturizing and gentle daily cleaning. A stronger version (10%) is also available which is very effective if your skin can tolerate it.
2- Perrigo 2.5% Benzoyl Peroxide Acne Treatment Gel
This is a water-based gel formulation with 2.5% of benzoyl peroxide. It is great for sensitive skin and it also comes in stronger concentrations (5% and 10%) if necessary. It can be left on the skin safely (as long as your skin can tolerate it) or it can be washed off.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
1- Can you use Benzoyl peroxide instead of deodorant?
You cannot use benzoyl peroxide to replace your deodorant.
Benzoyl peroxide will clean the armpits and kill bacteria, but it will not deodorize them or prevent sweating.
There are, instead, some great natural deodorants and remedies that you can try.
Click here to read more about them: 10 Quick & Easy DIY Natural Remedies For Smelly Armpits
2- Does benzoyl peroxide help with sweating?
Benzoyl peroxide will not reduce sweating in your underarm area.
It will help your armpits to stay clean and fresh for longer, but it will not stop you from sweating. It is not an antiperspirant.
Some people have a medical condition that causes them to sweat too much, and they sometimes need to find a permanent solution.
Check out these articles to read more:
3- Can you use Benzoyl peroxide wash or cream for the groin area
You can use low concentrations of benzoyl peroxide on any area of your skin, even on the areas around the groin area, but you should not use it directly on your groin.
Benzoyl Peroxide is strictly for external use only. It is also not suitable for the sensitive and thin skin of your genital regions.
If you have acne on the skin around your groin area (upper thighs or butt), you can use a low-concentration wash or a gel that can be washed off.