Normally this is where I would put an image to go along with my topic but given the subject matter, ummm no! And please note, this is in no way a sponsored post. I was not compensated in any way for presenting this. It’s just something I wanted to share – or over-share as the case may be!
Large breasted women, unite in solidarity over the plight that is the under breast rash! Yep, I went there. Now I realize this may seem like TMI to some of you and others may be thinking, “A rash under your breasts? I’ve never heard of such a thing!” but if you are a large breasted woman, you’ve probably had to deal with it at least once in your lifetime. And I think it’s about time to talk about the issue and try to come up with some solutions.
The most common causes of rashes under the breasts are from heat, excessive sweating, and a lack of air to that area. If such rashes worsen, they can develop into a yeast or other type of fungal infection – a common one is known as cutaneous candidiasis. In my case, if these rashes persist, they will often develop into a staph infection. So, I’ve started to learn tips and tricks for dealing with them before they persist for too long – nipping the problem in the bud, shall we say?
Here are my top 8 ways to get rid of a rash under your breasts:
1) The first step I like to take is to make sure to keep this area extra clean. Of course, I practice normal daily hygiene but with a rash breakout, I find it important to clean that area several times a day. It’s also important to be very very gentle – it could be really painful to the touch. And please make sure that you don’t use scented products or new products to the area during this time. I try out products when I’m not having this issue to make sure that they don’t irritate my skin or that I’m not allergic or sensitive to them. You don’t want to make things worse! Then you can try using them when you do have the rash and see if they help. I’ve been using Spectro Derm cleanser for this with good results.
2) After cleaning the area well, it’s important to let it dry out thoroughly. So, yes that means I begin by patting the area dry with a really soft cloth (GENTLY!) and then, are you ready for this? I lie down (before putting any clothing back on top) and allow the area to air dry as well. That may mean that you have to use your hands to lift your breasts up so the rashy area is completely exposed to the air. Yeah, it’s weird, but it works.
3) The next thing I do is to apply some cornstarch – not talc, not baby powder – I find that plain old cornstarch (the kind in your kitchen) works best. You can sometimes buy cornstarch in a shaker container at a drug store (for more money) but you MUST make sure that it’s pure cornstarch – no additives, no scents. This will help to further dry out and keep the area dry which I find is vital in getting it cleared up. To make it easier to use, I bought one of those Parmesan cheese shakers from the dollar store and put my cornstarch in there. By the way, I apply cornstarch every single day when getting dressed to help keep the rashes from forming in the first place.
4) A couple of times a day if possible or for sure at bedtime at the very least, I apply some kind of medicated cream. I would apply it more but it can leave embarrassing marks on your shirts and you won’t want that if you’re going out for the day. Here’s where I found I had to experiment quite a bit. Your doctor might be able to prescribe something for you – mine even experimented with mixing a few different ones together when I’ve had rashes that just didn’t want to clear up. The success of these creams has been varied. Sometimes, they work to make a significant difference in just a few days and were completely cleared up within 5-7 days. Other times, I get a really stubborn case that just didn’t want to go away. I found that anti-fungal creams whether OTC or prescription didn’t help me at all but others may find relief with them. I used to use some OTC antibiotic cream and it will sometimes still helps in a pinch. But what I’ve been having the best luck with is the Rash Repair Balm from SkinFix.(They’ve come out with a gentle hair and body wash now that’s geared towards babies but I plan to try it too!). NOTE: Don’t apply the medicated cream AND the cornstarch or you’ll have a gloppy mess. Plus the cornstarch can’t really do it’s job of drying out the area under your breasts when it’s competing with a cream. It’s one or the other. If you’re going to be at home and don’t have to worry about the cream showing through onto your clothing, I’d suggest alternating between the two each time you cleanse the area.
5) If you can, sleep topless. If not topless, then wear a loose fitting 100% cotton shirt that will help prevent too much heat and dampness for forming under your breasts. Don’t sleep in your bra and when you do need to wear one, if you can, wear a 100% cotton one. It will again help to keep the problem from occurring in the first place. I need more support than they offer so instead, I will sometimes place a strip of cotton under my breasts prior to putting my bra on (in especially hot weather or for times when I know I’ll be wearing my bra an extra long time – like when traveling).
6) Along with drying out your skin, you want to cool it down too. There is a reason they refer to it as inflamed skin. Cooling it down will help it to heal faster so I find that cold compresses can help with this. A soft cloth dampened with cold water or even wrapping an ice pack in the soft cloth placed in the affected area for up to 15 minutes can be really helpful. I try to do this at least once a day – more if I have the opportunity.
6) Recently, I’ve started using coconut oil under my breasts before I go to bed at night. It has soothing and healing effects on skin. During a rash outbreak, you might want to try applying it even more often but again, it can seep through to your clothing and so is not ideal when you’re going to be out and about unless you use it in combination with the cotton strips I mentioned before. I also use Udderly Smooth cream under my breasts every morning. It soaks in better than the coconut oil so it’s ok to use under my clothing and I’ve had great luck with it for my eczema. I think it helps soothe, heal, and protect my skin, in particular from the friction that can be caused by my bra.
7) Calamine lotion can really help relieve the itchiness. I tend towards pain rather than itchiness most of the time but once it starts healing and drying, the itchiness begins and calamine lotion can be a Godsend!
8) Teatree oil is an antifungal that I’ve been experimenting with lately too. WARNING: teatree oil is much too strong to apply it alone. It always has to be diluted in some way. I’ve been using it mixed in with olive oil. Mix a couple drops of the teatree oil with about a tablespoon olive oil. Apply with cotton balls a couple times a day, massaging it in gently. It’s especially good to use at bedtime.
In researching ways to deal with these rashes, I found some other ideas. One was lemon juice ether diluted with water or mixed with honey (another item with antibacterial qualities)– my rash often results in open sores so I won’t be trying something acidic like lemon juice but it’s worth mentioning as an option for others.
Another idea I read about but haven’t tried is to make a paste out of garlic cloves and apply that. Obviously, this is one you’ll need to try for times when you’ll be home for a while because I would imagine that you would smell like garlic for quite some time after using it.
Turmeric, mixed with water, milk, or aloe vera gel, is another item with antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and antiseptic properties that was recommended on several sites. You apparently leave it on for about half an hour and then rinse it off. The claims are that it will help not only with the itching but also will help prevent the rash from spreading. I just learned about this one and haven’t had the chance to test it yet but I’m open to trying pretty much anything!
If the rash persists, you really should see a doctor. Some rashes can be stubborn, some can get infected, and some can be a symptom of another condition. In any of these cases, you’ll need a medical professional to help you out!
What about you? Do you have any great tips for helping to prevent or treat rashes under breasts?