under-breast rash

Women rarely talk about one delicate problem that many of them experience. It is especially common at this time of year because of warm, humid weather. These conditions favor the growth of fungus under the breasts that leads to under-breast rash.

Drug companies may be unaware of the problem. As far as we can tell, there are no FDA-approved products specifically designed to ease the redness, itching and discomfort these infections create. As a result, women have come up with their own approaches for treating this problem.

What Do Women Do for Under-Breast Rash?

We have heard from hundreds of readers about their ingenious remedies for under-breast rash. Here are just a few examples.

Athlete’s foot medicine:

“I had a fungus rash under my breasts. There was some Tinactin antifungal cream for athlete’s foot in my bathroom cabinet. I used it twice a day and in about a week the rash was gone.”

Diaper rash medicine:

“Under my breasts I get a very painful ‘rashy type redness’ that has a bad odor. It even seeps liquid sometimes from the rash. My solution, not ‘cure’, is to wash, pat dry and then apply Zincofax (for diaper rashes). Within ten minutes all the stinging and burning is gone and in a few hours everything has dried up and the skin is back to normal for the time being.”

Zincofax is zinc oxide, which has been used for decades to protect skin from moisture and irritation.

Vaginal cream:

“Do you think vaginal cream will work as well? I’ve been having this rash for close to a year now.”

Many women do use Vagisil or similar products for yeast infections to treat their under-breast rash.

One reader offered her solution, Monistat Chafing Relief Powder Gel:

“I have had this issue (under-breast rash) my entire life. Like my mother and grandmother, I started using cornstarch or baby powder. That worked, but it has to be applied twice a day or more often depending on how badly you sweat. Getting powder everywhere at work was embarrassing. When I started driving a big truck, trying to apply the powder became even trickier.

“Zinc oxide protected the skin, but it felt gross. I can’t remember how I was introduced to it, but I started using Monistat Chafing Relief Powder Gel. It is primarily dimethicone. This product goes on like a gel, but feels like a silky powder. It doesn’t dry, but gives just the right amount of slippage.

“I use Monistat yeast infection cream first for the required number of days to heal any yeast infection. Then Monistat Chafing Relief Gel protects the skin from moisture and friction.

“I apply it in the morning and it will actually last all day. It is a little on the expensive side, but it reduced the number of boils caused by hair follicles, sweat, heat and friction that powder usually didn’t prevent.

“I have been using this product for years and I tell my doctors about it every chance I get. They are often surprised at how healthy my skin is under my breasts, under my stomach and in my groin.

“Other products that contain dimethicone don’t feel the same. The closest alternative I have found so far is Lanacane Anti-Chafing Gel, but it isn’t as silky as Monistat. It changed my life.”

What Other Remedies Can Ease Under-Breast Rash?

Other remedies that have been shared include coconut oil, old-fashioned amber Listerine, Vicks VapoRub, Zeasorb powder and apple cider vinegar. Many women also suggest using a cotton handkerchief or absorbent pads under the bra to keep the area dry. You can read even more about such remedies here.

Milk of Magnesia:

Most people think of milk of magnesia as a chalky white liquid laxative. Perhaps the most famous brand is Phillips’ Milk of Magnesia. The active ingredient is magnesium hydroxide.

Many years ago a reader told us that milk of magnesia (MoM) was a great underarm deodorant. That in turn led us to develop a whole line of aluminum-free MoM Roll-on Deodorants. Learn more about them at this link.

We mention this because some women have taken to using antiperspirants under their breasts. We’re not sure that is a good idea, since all antiperspirants contain aluminum. Some scientists have raised concerns about aluminum and breast cancer (Journal of Inorganic Biochemistry (Aug. 15, 2015).

That brings us back to MoM. Visitors to this website say it works well for under-breast rash.

F.G. reports:

“MoM! Milk of magnesia works well. Dab it on and let it dry.”

Joanne says:

“I have been using the People’s Pharmacy MoM (milk of magnesia) roll-on deodorant under my breasts for itchy fungal rashes. I use my hair dryer to dry the MoM. The rash usually clears up in 2 days. I LOVE MOM!”

T.W. agrees with Joanne:

“I used to dab milk of magnesia under my breasts, but now I use the People’s Pharmacy roll on milk of magnesia and enjoy easy, non-messy, and quick applications in addition to a healing plus preventive treatment! Thanks for such a great product!”

You can learn more about aluminum-free MoM products at this link.

No One Best Solution for Under-Breast Rash:

Ultimately, trial and error will yield the best approach for any individual woman. Some women sing the praises of vodka. No, you don’t drink it! You apply it. Others recommend Noxzema skin cream. Gold Bond also has its advocates. Nothing works for everyone.

If you have a favorite remedy for managing under-breast rash, please tell us about it in the comments below. If you use MoM roll-on deodorant, please share your experience as well.

Revised 5/31/18

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  1. Cara
    Spokane, WA
    Reply

    I don’t live where the humidity promotes fungal rashes, but I have often had painful rashes under my bra band, sometimes with small blisters. It took awhile, but I made the connection to eating bananas and gradually realized I have a latex allergy. Bananas and latex are related, so when I eat bananas I welt up anywhere latex touches, which is in most bra bands. The rash usually appears the next day – kiwis & avocados do it to me, too.

  2. Sheri
    TX
    Reply

    I live in San Antonio, TX and am a weekend gardener. We have warm, humid springs and hot, humid summers. I started getting a rash under my breasts about 15 years ago because I sweat like crazy down here and would put Desitin on before I would go to work outside. I don’t like the smell so much, but it helps.

    One day I had a really painful rash, so I put neosporin on it to kill the bacteria for a couple of days. Then I put on 100% tea tree oil on because I heard that it has antifungal properties. Well, it works very well. My skin cleared up in a couple of days. So now when I work in my garden and sweat all day I put on tea tree oil after I shower. It works great for me.

  3. Phyllis
    N C
    Reply

    I recently read about applying an antiperspirant deodorant under the breast to keep it drier and, thereby, hopefully eliminate this problem. I have tried it, and it does seem to help keep me drier. Is this safe?

  4. Lucy
    Fl
    Reply

    I use Vitamin E oil, and it works great.

  5. genie d.
    WI
    Reply

    I use an antifungal powder everytime I shower or swim, and it controls the rash. It was suggested by a dermatologist.

  6. Diane
    Florida
    Reply

    I have had a rash and tried corn starch. It is cheap and works very well to take care of the dampness under your breasts.

  7. Marie
    Reply

    I developed a sore raw area on the underside. It did not heal for several weeks. I started applying alcohol hand wash gel. It cleared up quickly. I started putting a small thin towel underneath my bra. Much more comfortable.

  8. RAD
    Washington
    Reply

    Didn’t have a skin yeast rash problems my late 30’s. I started wearing cotton thin tees under my bras, helped a lot. Then with fibro and meds I started having skin yeast infection in other areas on my skin. I got tired of more pills and creams, so I sunned the areas just 10 minutes or so & then used vinegar after and all has gone away and not come back. Luckily I cpuld do this in the privacy of our yard.

    • Mary A. M.
      Eugene
      Reply

      Hi, like you, I also have Fibromyalgia which can cause severe hyper-sweating under arms, under your belly as well as under breasts. In my case, I found that the burning became severe. Nilstatin didn’t work. Neither did Monistat. Nor did cornstarch (which made the yeast situation worse).

      What I find works is a two-pronged approach: To keep area dry on a regular basis, I treat with all crease areas with antiperspirant or rubbing alcohol. For infected areas I use Listerine 2/daily with a cotton ball. If you have an active rash, I recommend using more than one cotton ball for areas infected (so you don’t spread the rashing). It works wonders.

  9. Therese M
    Reply

    What is a breast sling? I am very interested because my rash was so bad I had to quit wearing a bra, and sometimes that doesn’t even work.

  10. Cathy
    NC
    Reply

    I have been using Gold Bond Friction Defense and it works quite well.

  11. Ellie
    Florida
    Reply

    Before putting on my bra, I put some baby powder under my breasts every day and have been doing it for years. In the evening, when I remove my bra, if it feels even a bit warm and damp, there goes another small amount of powder. It has never failed me.

  12. Mattea
    buffalo, ny 14222
    Reply

    I use Coconut Oil to counteract the irritation..pat dry and then apply the coconut oil…it is anti-inflammatory and works well.

  13. kassandra
    AZ
    Reply

    I submitted the following comment a year ago when you first published this same article. I still use the same method, and it still works:
    I had never heard of this until 2 months ago. I was going to my dr. anyway, so I asked her what would help. She prescribed Nystatin cream which fights the yeast when applied 2x day. It works! Because the growth of yeast is also slowed by salt, after I shower, I apply my mineral salt deodorant under my breasts, and then the Nystatin cream. The itching stops and the rash goes away in just 2-3 days.

  14. Barbara
    FL
    Reply

    I live in Florida and when I started having problems, many years ago, with under breast rash I would put baby powder under my breast but it disappeared too soon. Then one day, while getting ready for work, I was applying my underarm anti-perspirant deodorant and thought, if this works so well under my arms why wouldn’t it work under my breast, so I tried it. It worked beautifully. I have had no rash since using my underarm deodorant. I have used several different brands and all seem to work so long as they are anti-perspirant deodorants.

  15. Elouise
    Hampton, va
    Reply

    I have suffered with under the breast chafing for years. My doctor precribed NYSTAN-TRIAMCINOLONE cream and it works wonders. The chafing does not come back as soon. I started with the powder but it was harder to apply than the cream.

  16. Helen
    CA
    Reply

    It appears that different things work for different people. Different fungi perhaps.
    I had a rather expensive cream from my Dr. that didn’t help and tried a couple of different powders. Finally Desenex powder in the yellow can for athlete’s foot. worked for me. Very soothing and quick relief. Problem gone.

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