How to Shave Armpits

Woman who is shaving her armpits
Q: No matter what razor I use, I cannot get a close shave on my armpits. I always have what looks like stubble when I raise my arm (look in the mirror). If I shave in the am and have plans for a night out in the evening, I have to shave again because of the growth/stubble.
I am so self conscious that I rarely wear sleeveless tops. I have not tried waxing as I heard it is extremely painful and some friends said they even bled. Do you have any tips on how to shave - products to use to get a close shave? Thank you for your assistance.

A: If the “stubble” can be felt (not just seen) then a closer shave could be possible and we’ll discuss that in just a moment. However, if “what looks like stubble” is only visible (and the skin is smooth to touch) then you may be dealing with the visibility of the sub-surface portions of the hair in the follicle due to the translucence of the skin.
With “felt” stubble: you can often achieve a smoother, closer shave result by using a smaller razor in the problem area. Many beauty supply stores offer shaving razors that are much narrower and are usually designed for use in close quarters such as the bikini area. These smaller razors are ideal for use in the underarm area of some women because for some women, the underarm is very deeply contoured and wider razors cannot make uniform contact to shave the hair.
If what we’re dealing here is only something that is “visible” rather than felt then we may be dealing with a matter of the hair in the follicle being visible through the skin. We are all unique in the way our skin looks. The precise skin tone and color is a result of the combined effects of pigmentation and opacity of the skin cells, combined with blood flow and hair texture and density.
For some people the skin is very opaque, while with others you seem almost to be able to see clearly the veins and arteries that run beneath the surface of the skin. Many individuals who have translucent skin find that the portions of the hair that reside beneath the skin’s surface (within the follicle) are still visible – particularly those with naturally dark hair.
Of course, since you comment that you usually need a second shave in the evening due to the growth of stubble, you may simply have a rapid growth rate that may necessitate multiple shaves or the need for an alternative hair removal plan. If the smaller razor doesn’t resolve the issue and get you a shave suitably close to offer longer lasting results, then perhaps you can try a depilatory cream such as Nair or Neet (or Veet, which combines the cream with a “squeegee-like” tool to scrape away the dissolved hair) to see if they can give you the longer-lasting results you desire.
A more dramatic step would be to consult with your doctor about the possibility of laser hair removal. The drawbacks for this are the fact that the treatments are relatively expensive and require multiple treatments for lasting results.
Photo: Yurakrasil/Shutterstock
See also: What should I keep in mind when buying an epilator?