What causes dark skin in the groin area?

Examining the causes of dark skin in the groin area

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Dark skin around the groin area can be a skin disorder known as acanthosis nigricans. This condition affects people of all ages. It is detected mostly in people with dark skin, especially those of African descent. Though they are conspicuous in otherwise healthy people, acanthosis nigricans and dark skin in the groin area can be a symptom of a larger underlying medical problem, so it’s important to consult with a doctor.

What causes the skin to darken around the groin?

Understanding what causes this skin condition

Darkening of the skin on the thighs can be experienced by anyone, despite their skin tone. It develops when the skin on the inner thigh generate a lot of melanin, the pigment that gives the skin its color. This is known as hyperpigmentation. The discoloration of dark inner thighs can stretch into the bikini or groin area.Dark skin in the groin area can also be due to high insulin levels. This is commonly seen together with obesity, resulting from diabetes type 2 or other conditions that affect the levels of insulin. Some medications cause darkening of the skin in the groin area as a side effect, inclusive of those that regulate hormone /cholesterol levels and systemic corticosteroids. In some clinical trials conducted by the Cleveland Clinic, the darkened skin can also be caused by medical conditions namely; Addison’s disease, thyroid, pituitary disorders. Some types of cancer, especially in the stomach, can cause skin darkening. In rare cases, hereditary acanthosis nigricans. There are a few reasons why a person may experience skin darkening on the inner thighs. Some of these reasons are:

  1. chafing – which occurs when exercising or walking, and might make the skin itchy, thin, and discolored
  2. hormonal imbalance, among women during lactation, menstruation or pregnancy, or among those people with PCOS(polycystic ovarian syndrome )
  3. certain medications, especially hormonal oral contraceptives / specific chemotherapy medications
  4. sun exposure
  5. dry skin
  6. friction from tight clothing
  7. diabetes mellitus
  8. dead skin cells

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Dark skin in the groin area: Risk factors

An obese person may be at greater risk for dark inner thighs due to chafing of the skin. You’re also at very high risk if you have a hormonal imbalance or diabetes mellitus, or you take certain medications.

Dark skin in the groin area: Symptoms

Dark skin in the groin area is commonly marked by thickened and velvety textured skin. These changes may appear just anywhere on the body, but they show in skin folds and creases. Skin elsewhere on the body is normally similarly affected, mostly on the neck or armpits. It is not uncommon for the soles of the feet, lips, or palms of the hands to be affected as well. In some instances, the darkened skin itches, and, if left unchecked, it spreads slowly. Skin tags or lesions are at times seen on the affected areas, too.

The significance of darkened skin patches

It is a sign that a person is dangerously obese and has resistance to insulin when skin darkening around the groin is noted. The health risks related to these conditions–include liver disease, stroke, heart disease, cancer, and diabetes –are numerous and life-threatening. The darkened skin can also suggest malignancy or glandular problems.

Dark skin in the groin area: Diagnosis

A physician or dermatologist may identify darkened groin skin as acanthosis nigricans(An) with a visual examination. If a patient is obese or has documented insulin resistance, it is mostly diagnosed as the underlying matter. However, further testing may be needed to find out the origin. This includes blood tests,x-rays or biopsy.

Dark skin in the groin area: Treatment

The main treatment for dark skin around the groin is weight loss and management of insulin level through better dietary habits, including reducing the amount of sugar and starches, and increased physical activity. Cases, where medications cause the discoloration, require the cessation of the particular medication. Remedying underlying medical conditions is necessary when they cause skin darkening. Topical skin treatments like retinoids, alpha hydroxy acids or urea, can decrease discoloration, and cosmetic procedures such as dermabrasion or laser therapy can also improve the appearance of the affected skin as well.

Remedies to help with hyperpigmentation

Remedies made at home may help in lightening darkened skin around thighs.

Coconut oil and lemon juice

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Lemons contain vitamin C, which can help handle hyperpigmentation. Coconut oil serves as a moisturizer, and it helps to keep the thighs supple and soft. How to make lemon juice and coconut oil scrub: Mix a few tablespoons of coconut oil with juice from half a lemon. Gently rub the mixture onto the darkened area and massage in circular motions for 10 minutes or more, then wash the area clean with some warm water.

Sugar Scrub

Sugar can help exfoliate the skin. Exfoliating of the area can help if a buildup of dead skin cells causes the dark skin. Use fresh lemon juice, a tablespoon of honey, and a teaspoon of sugar to make the sugar scrub. Slowly scrub the mixture into the inner thighs, in circular motions for about ten minutes. Rinse the area thoroughly to remove the scrub. You can also purchase premade sugar scrubs.

Oatmeal, yogurt scrub

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Oatmeal can be used in treating eczema and other inflammatory skin disorders. It can be used as an exfoliant, and it’s gentler than sugar. Yogurt contains lactic acid, which can improve skin health. Yogurt has other benefits for the skin when used topically or orally.How to create your own scrub using oatmeal: Make a paste of equal parts of oat cereal and non-sugared yogurt. Apply the paste to the dark areas of skin, scrub gently and wash the paste off your leg.

Baking soda and water

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Baking soda helps in lightening and exfoliating your skin, but caution should be taken when using it. That’s because baking soda can be a bit harsh on your skin. It can cause irritation and make any skin conditions worse.How to create your own baking soda mask: Mix baking soda and enough water to make a paste. Apply a thin layer of the paste to the inner thighs, similar to how you apply a face mask. Leave it on for fifteen minutes, and rinse it off. Put on a moisturizer after.

Aloe vera

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Aloe vera based products or an aloe vera gel are said to soothe irritated, itchy skin. Aloe has aloin, that shows potential in skin lightening.  Cut an aloe vera leaf from the plant, slice it lengthwise and rub one half of the leaf onto the affected area. Let it dry and wash it off. You can wash it off if it begins to feel sticky. 

Potato rub

Rubbing potatoes on your skin is a solution to dark spots on the spot. People believe that catecholase, an enzyme in potatoes, can skin lighten. To use this remedy: Slice a potato, and rub the slice over the area that is affected for about 15 minutes or longer. Wash the area gently,

Over-the-counter (OTC) treatments

Some are made from natural ingredients, which show some hope in their ability to lower hyperpigmentation; these ingredients may work towards lightening the skin and don’t carry many risks of an allergic reaction:

  • Soy, niacinamide, ellagic acid, and lignin peroxidase. This ingredients are prevalent in over the counter treatments and have shown potential in skin lightening, but can cause allergic reactions in some people:
  • Arbutin,kojic acid, and licorice. Talk to a physician before you use an OTC product for lightening skin. They can evaluate factors causing and help you to take an appropriate product.

Procedures and prescription ointments

If remedies made at home and OTC treatments don’t help, you may want to talk to your physician about products available with medical procedures/prescription that can help in lightening your skin. Here are some additional treatments your physician may advise.

  • Hydroquinone – The standard dermatologic treatment used to “bleach” skin is a cream containing hydroquinone. It ’s in small concentrations in OTC products, but a physician will prescribe hydroquinone in more substantial levels for added results.
  • Retinoids – Vitamin A-based retinoid products are available OTC, but a doctor can prescribe stronger concentrations. Retinoids, such as retinoic acid, regulate the growth of the skin cell and are a likely option to skin hyperpigmentation treatment. You may have to use a retinoid product for many months before results can be seen. Retinoid products may dry and sensitive to the sun.
  • Laser treatments – Laser skin lightening is a reliable method that reduces skin pigmentation without scarring. 


  • Prevent chafing by wearing nylon stockings under skirts or dresses or bicycle shorts.
  • Always keep the inner thigh area clean and well exfoliated to limit the buildup of skin that’s dead.
  • Wear breathable, loose clothing to prevent excessive sweating and friction.
  • Avoid shaving or waxing the area too often to avoid irritation.
  • Always wear an SPF of thirty or higher when out on the sun, and avoid excessive sun exposure when possible.

Hyperpigmentation of the inner thighs is familiar and not harmful to your health. in Addition to that, keeping the area clean, avoiding chafing, and limiting sun exposure can help to reduce the risk of developing dark inner thighs in the future.

How to tighten skin?

To make our skin tighter, eat healthily, exfoliate your skin, limit UV exposure, and use

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