Is it true....

that some people with shadows in the armpits have it because it’s the way their skin is?
and others people’s shadows are caused by the hair??
and if you’re in the category of skin, laser won’t remove the shadow but if you’re in the hair category you’ll be clear of shadows?
i want to make sure that mine is caused by the hair or i would waste my money on laser!! or is the whole skin thing fake?

What else would cause the shadows other than hair? I say, based on my experience, hair would be the only cause. I am having my armpits cleared by electrolysis, and once the scabs disappear there are no shadows. It looks and feels great. No more perspiration stains on shirts, and I stay cooler while working out!


I have seen cases over the last several years where hair was removed from the underarms and the appearance of a dark shadow remained or developed in the future. This condition is not associated with permanent hair removal, but rather is related to a skin disorder.

I am not a dermatologist, but after doing some detective work, someone speculated to me that this condition could be acanthosis nigricans. Here’s more info if you are interested:

Also, do your own search to read more about this.

Basically, this dark shadowy appearance can be inherited or caused by obesity or drug induced (oral contraceptives, especially). Some people don’t have the dramatic pigmentary changes as you can see in some of the pictures shown on different sites. Losing weight,if it is caused by obesity, can help the shadow fade. Retin-A topically can help, too, if used over time.

Another electrologist, thought this could be a hormonal situation caused by obesity (insulin resistance), preganancy,etc.

So removing the hair will help the shadowy appearance, but if the cause goes beyond hair, you may not be totally home free. Check into topicals that may help clear or fade the shadow.

I think the way to tell if it’s the hair or a skin condition is to see what happens when you get it waxed. Laser removal would basically create a similar effect, no hair under your skin to cause the shadow. If the problem is still there when your underarm is waxed, it’s not the hair underneath that is causing the shadow.