13 Best Ways To Use Baking Soda To Lighten Dark Underarms

Medically Reviewed by Dr. Hari Hara Sudhan, MD
Written by Ramona Sinha, Certified Skin Care Coach

Want to flaunt the cute sleeveless dress you got, but your dark armpits making you conscious? We all have been there. Many people claim that baking soda for underarm whitening is an effective remedy, and we are here to investigate that claim.

Baking soda is a commonly used home remedy to brighten the underarms. However, you have to be careful while using it on your skin. This article explains how baking soda may have that brightening effect, ways to use it, and its risks. Read on.

How Does Baking Soda Whiten Underarms?

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Well, there is no scientific proof claiming that baking soda can brighten your underarms. However, as it is an alkaline substance, baking soda does not disturb your skin’s pH levels. Instead, it soothes your skin. Baking soda is often used as an exfoliant to remove dead skin cells from the surface. This is the reason it has a brightening effect.

But how do you use it? We will look at that in the following section. Scroll down.

How To Use Baking Soda For Underarm Whitening?

These DIY recipes work as excellent scrubs for your underarms and will help exfoliate the dead skin in your armpits.

1. DIY Baking Soda And Water Scrub

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You Will Need
  • 2 tablespoons of baking soda
  • 1 tablespoon of water
  • 1 bowl
Method
  1. Mix both the ingredients in the bowl.
  2. Adjust the quantity of water as per the desired consistency (it shouldn’t be too runny).
  3. Apply the mixture to your armpits and massage for a minute.
  4. Leave it on for 25-30 minutes.
  5. Wash off with lukewarm water.
How Often?

2-3 times a week.

2. Baking Soda, Gram Flour, And Curd

You Will Need
  • 1 tablespoon of baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon of gram flour
  • 1 tablespoon of curd (adjust the quantity as per desired consistency)
Method
  1. Mix all the ingredients in a bowl to get a thick paste.
  2. Apply the paste to your armpits and massage for a minute.
  3. Let it dry for at least 20 minutes.
  4. Wash off with lukewarm water.
How Often?

2-3 times a week.

3. Baking Soda And Avocado

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You Will Need
  • 2 tablespoons of baking soda
  • 1 tablespoon of mashed avocado
  • ½ tablespoon of lemon juice (diluted with water)
Method
  1. Mix all the ingredients well. If the consistency is too thick, add a few drops of rose water. Make a fine paste.
  2. Gently cover the armpits with the mixture and massage.
  3. Leave it on for 20 minutes.
  4. Wash off with lukewarm water.
How Often?

2 times a week.

4. Baking Soda And Cornstarch

You Will Need
  • 1 tablespoon of baking soda
  • 1 tablespoon of cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon of cucumber juice (adjust the quantity)
Method
  1. Mix all the ingredients in a bowl to make a thick paste.
  2. Apply the paste to the armpits. Let it dry.
  3. Wash off with cold water.
How Often?

2-3 times a week.

5. Baking Soda And Coconut Oil

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You Will Need
  • 1 tablespoon of baking soda
  • Coconut oil (enough to make a thick paste)
Method
  1. Mix the ingredients in a bowl.
  2. Apply the mixture to your armpits and scrub gently in a circular motion.
  3. Leave it on for 15 minutes or until it dries.
How Often?

2-3 times a week.

6. Baking Soda And Milk Scrub

You Will Need
  • 1 tablespoon of baking soda
  • Milk (enough to make a paste)
Method
  1. Mix baking soda and milk in a bowl.
  2. Apply the paste to your armpits.
  3. Scrub gently for a minute and let it dry.
  4. Wash with lukewarm water.
How Often?

2-3 times a week.

7. Baking Soda And Lemon Juice

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You Will Need
  • 1 tablespoon of baking soda
  • Juice of half a lemon (dilute it with water)
Method
  1. Combine both the ingredients in a bowl to obtain a paste.
  2. Apply the paste to your armpits and massage for a minute.
  3. Let it dry for 20 minutes.
  4. Wash off with cold water.
How Often?

2-3 times a week.

8. Baking Soda And Glycerin

You Will Need
  • 1 tablespoon of baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon of glycerin
Method
  1. Mix the two ingredients in a bowl until you get a thick paste.
  2. Apply the paste to your armpits.
  3. Leave it on for 15 minutes and then wash off.
How Often?

3-4 times a week.

9. Baking Soda And Cucumber

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You Will Need
  • 1 tablespoon of baking soda
  • 1 tablespoon of freshly squeezed cucumber juice
Method
  1. Mix both the ingredients. You may also add a few drops of olive oil and lemon juice (optional).
  2. Combine well and apply to your armpits.
  3. Leave it on for 15 minutes.
  4. Wash off with lukewarm water.
How Often?

3 times a week.

10. Baking Soda And Honey Scrub

You Will Need
  • 1 tablespoon of baking soda
  • 1 tablespoon of honey
Method
  1. Combine honey and baking soda in a bowl.
  2. Add a few drops of rose water if the consistency is too thick.
  3. Spread the mixture over your armpits.
  4. Massage for a minute and leave it to dry for 20 minutes.
  5. Wash with lukewarm water.
How Often?

Once daily.

11. Baking Soda And Apple Cider Vinegar

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You Will Need
Method
  1. Combine the two ingredients in a bowl.
  2. Make a thick paste and massage it in your armpits for a minute.
  3. Leave it to dry for 15-20 minutes.
  4. Wash with cold water.
How Often?

2-3 times a week.

12. Baking Soda And Hydrogen Peroxide

You Will Need
  • ¼ cup of baking soda
  • ⅛ cup of hydrogen peroxide
  • Juice of a half a lemon (diluted)
Method
  1. Combine the ingredients and whisk them into a thick paste.
  2. Spread the mixture over your underarms and let it dry for 15 minutes.
  3. Use a wet washcloth to wipe your underarm clean.
  4. You may wash it with water later.
How Often?

2-3 days a week.

13. Baking Soda And Tomato

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You Will Need
  • 1 tablespoon of baking soda
  • 1 tablespoon of freshly squeezed tomato juice
Method
  1. Mix baking soda and tomato juice in a bowl.
  2. Massage the mixture over your armpits.
  3. Leave it for 20-30 minutes.
  4. Wash with cold water.
How Often?

2-3 times a week.

Baking soda (or sodium bicarbonate) seems to be an ideal ingredient for brightening your underarms. However, this doesn’t mean you should start rubbing it on your skin right away. You should know the potential risks before using it.

Risks Of Using Baking Soda On Your Skin

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Baking soda is abrasive. It is alkaline (any substance that has a pH higher than 7 is alkaline, and anything below that is acidic). It might change and disrupt the pH balance of your underarms and damage the skin barrier. When the skin’s acid mantle doesn’t function properly, the composition of the bacterial flora on your skin surface also changes along with the enzyme activity.

Hence, using baking soda may cause:

  • Dryness
  • Skin irritation
  • Rashes

Luckily, you can easily restore the pH of your underarms. All you need to do is mix equal parts of apple cider vinegar and water and use it as a toner for your underarms.

Be careful about using baking soda if you have sensitive skin. Always do a patch test before using baking soda on any part of your body. Baking soda is a physical exfoliator. Using it a few times a week (followed by proper skin care) works wonders. Excessive exfoliation (using it day and night) with baking soda may dehydrate your skin – hence we do not recommend that.

Baking soda has traditionally been used as an exfoliating agent to shed dead skin cells and achieve brighter skin. You can use it to make scrubs in combination with ingredients like gram flour, curd, avocado, coconut oil, milk, lemon juice, glycerin, and cucumber. Use these scrubs at least twice or thrice a week for visible results. However, using baking soda for underarm lightening may disrupt the pH balance of the underarms and lead to dryness, skin irritation, and rashes. So, practice caution and take the necessary measures for aftercare.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does baking soda take to lighten dark underarms?

After applying baking powder paste to the armpits, leave it on for 25-30 minutes. Then wash with lukewarm water. Continue this process 2-3 times a week for better results.

Is baking soda harmful to the skin?

Baking soda is not harmful to the skin. However, it may cause skin irritation in some people who are sensitive to baking soda.

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Dr. Hari Hara Sudhan

(MD)
Dr. Hari Hara Sudhan is a dermatologist in Coimbatore,Tamil Nadu. He has 14 years of experience in this field. He... more

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