5:42 pm - 04/13/2012

How to stop chafing

I am furious.

I am 5'4. I am 118 lbs. I'm a size 3. I'm African-American with a pretty sizable ass but I'm really small framed. My thighs have touched my whole life, since I started filling out as a woman. However, this past month, my thighs have been chafing like the dickens and I don't know why or how to stop it. 

The area is like, consistently ashy and the skin there has completely changed in texture (always rough) and has darkened. I'm insecure about wearing jeans or shorter skirts or shorts because I know my thighs will rub together and make it worse. I've tried vaseline to make it less obvious but I dont always want gross vaseline on my legs when I go to work or out to the club or something. I don't know what to do.

I think it's because I've gained maybe ONE POUND OR TWO in the last 6 months. But that can't be the reason can it? You dont' change that dramatically over a pound. 

Anyway, I need serious help. There's a guy I'm into and it hasn't gone very far, but in case it does, I don't want this to be the thing he sees first. Any suggestions to prevent further chafing, sooth my thighs, or to reserve the damage to my thighs appearance would be MOST appreciated. thanks. 
birthingway 13th-Apr-2012 09:44 pm (UTC)
It almost sounds like eczema. Is the skin itchy/stingy in addition to being rough?

Edited at 2012-04-13 09:44 pm (UTC)
spellfae 13th-Apr-2012 09:46 pm (UTC)
no, it's not itchy or stingy at all!! sometimes it feels tender but that's it. i literally noticed this for the first time maybe a month ago.

all my friends are telling me to work out, but i really don't want to go to the gym over something like this if I dont' know what caused it. chafing isn't always from weight gain right?

plus, i know myself. and the last thing i want to do at 118lbs is obsess about weight gain. at my size and weight, it would be ridiculous.
birthingway 13th-Apr-2012 10:00 pm (UTC)
I don't think this is a weight thing, I think it's a skin thing, FWIW.

There are all sorts of options out there, but my first suggestion would be to try to OTC hydrocortisone on a tiny part of the irritated skin, and see what happens. Simple moisturizer might work, too, but it sounds like you have a timeline you'd like to keep to. :-)
spellfae 13th-Apr-2012 10:02 pm (UTC)
hydrocortisone for scars?

also, by moisturizer, do you mean simple lotion or what? any suggestions?
birthingway 13th-Apr-2012 10:04 pm (UTC)
Hydrocortisone is a topical steroid, used to reduce inflammation.

As for moisturizers, I would suggest coconut oil, shea butter, or a very plain/unscented moisturizer.
anowyn 13th-Apr-2012 09:49 pm (UTC)
I don't mean to ask a personal question but how old are you? It could be that your body is simply changing - as you age even in your early-mid 20s your hips can widen and fat deposits can change around. I'm in a similar boat as you - I'm still the same weight as I always have been, but my ass and thighs make it impossible for me to get into my old pants from when I was 18-19 now. They just come to a stop right before my butt and are like, "nope, not going up there, I want to sit in the cold storage box!"

But for actual solutions, can you wear tights with your dresses perhaps? Or would something like one of those body shapers undergarments work? some of them go to mid-thigh and are designed to "smooth" you out a bit so to speak and are made of light, breathable material that helps with chafing.

You may also want to look into some of that post-bikini-shave razor-bump calming stuff? I'm not sure if it will work but when I get chafy in my thighs it gets red and bumpy, so this might help.

(and an OT note, is that Jamie Ray Newman in your icon? I want to steal her hair. <3)
spellfae 13th-Apr-2012 09:52 pm (UTC)
i'm 24 this august. I am terrified that i'm at the age where i can't eat feta cheese pizzas at midnight anymore and not worry about portions, etc. my metabolism has always been insanely fast and it would literally depress me if that wasn't the case anymore.

I would get "spanks", which is what i think you're referring to, but it would REALLY hurt. plus, it would flatten my booty and i don't want that either :D

I was considering Vitamin E gels or something to heal the skin but idk if that will solve the problem.

(OT is fine. It's Nicola Roberts from Girls Aloud)
anowyn 13th-Apr-2012 10:03 pm (UTC)
I'll be 25 in October so we're in a similar age bracket. Metabolism changes vary per person but at least for me I've noticed the last few years my hips have been getting wider and I definitely, um, notice if I start to pig out a little too much on M&M and peanut trail mix. :((
If your weight hasn't changed though I would want to assume your hips are just widening and maturing; from what I understand your body can go through changes like that up to age 30. But again it varies.

Yeah Spanks is what I was thinking about, there are some other brands but I used to work at a Maidenform and tried them on for fun so I know how tight and uncomfortable they can be.

I really like bridgelene's suggestion. I saw a commercial for that stuff and happy tears welled up in my eyes when I saw it, haha. It might be worth looking into.

Good luck, and I'm sorry I can't offer any more constructive advice... looks like you are getting a lot of it anyway :)
spellfae 13th-Apr-2012 10:09 pm (UTC)
no, you're very helpful! yay VP!

yeah, i think i'm just getting older. i gain about one pound a year, and so i don' think gaining 1.5 or 2 would so greatly contribute to this problem.

i just wonder why some girls chafe, and others, even some big girls, dont
bridgelene 13th-Apr-2012 09:50 pm (UTC)
I'm not sure about appearance, but as someone who also experiences chafing (which can be painful) I keep Monistat Soothing Care Chafing Relief Powder-Gel on hand. It goes on and feels like gel, but after you rub it in you can't notice it.

Good luck :)
bridgelene 13th-Apr-2012 09:51 pm (UTC)
http://www.drugstore.com/monistat-soothing-care-chafing-relief-powder-gel/qxp139254

I usually get it either at at the drugstore or in the grocery store if it has a section that will have it :)
spellfae 13th-Apr-2012 10:03 pm (UTC)
i heard about this too. do you have to use it every day to prevent chafing? does it solve the problem.
orgine 13th-Apr-2012 10:49 pm (UTC)
That stuff is AMAZING!
bridgelene 13th-Apr-2012 11:23 pm (UTC)
It works really well for me. I am mostly a pants girl, and I don't get chafing/irritation when I wear pants so I don't need to use it every day. I do put it on when I wear shorts or a skirt though, and a little bit goes a long way and lasts all day :)
oiseausansailes 14th-Apr-2012 01:51 am (UTC)
I love it. If you feel like your chafing daily then use it daily. Also, if you sweat a lot (I do, and it makes the chafing so. much. worse) you'll need to reapply every once in a while.
archangelbeth 13th-Apr-2012 09:51 pm (UTC)
Would it be possible to go to a dermatologist, in case there's something else going on?

Alternatively -- spandex shorts so your legs will "slide" instead of skin-on-skin roughness?

When you're not wearing much at all, you might try Neutragena -- I have an issue where I will pick at rough spots that used to be scabs that used to be, like, ingrown hairs and stuff. If I stick a teeny dab of that on the rough spot, it both softens it (so I don't pick as much) and reminds me not to pick at it. I've got a spot on my finger that is barely there anymore, after I realized it wasn't going to smooth down on its own and started doing a dab every night or so.

Good luck!
spellfae 13th-Apr-2012 10:01 pm (UTC)
hello again!!

i would try neutragena, except that it's medicated, i believe, and so i'm afraid of irritating my skin if it doesn't help.

i could go to a dermotologist, but i'd hate it if i go in there and their response is just "you're chafing"
archangelbeth 13th-Apr-2012 10:24 pm (UTC)
The one I was thinking of was http://www.neutrogena.com/product/hand+cream.do?sortby=ourPicks (no perfume version) -- but I have no idea if it's "medicated" or not, since their ingredients are kind of Secret Mystery Sauce. O:/

If you could find a sample-size tube, and try it somewhere else on your skin to see if it's irritating, that might be a test, if you were interested in giving it a shot.

And yeah, the dermatologist might just do "nope, just chafing" thing. Might be able to recommend something for it, though?

Crossing fingers something will work for ya!
miki_moo 13th-Apr-2012 10:30 pm (UTC)
My friend swears by neutragena, but it really upsets my skin. If you want to give it a go I would do a little skin test first just in case, as it seems to be a very hit or miss thing!

Good luck!
noodz 13th-Apr-2012 09:53 pm (UTC)
Let me say first that I only have experience with my own white skin, but I find coconut oil to be awesome for any skin ailments.
spellfae 13th-Apr-2012 09:58 pm (UTC)
coconut oil, i hear, is a magical product that's good with hair as well as skin. how have you used it and how long?
noodz 13th-Apr-2012 10:37 pm (UTC)
It's amazing! I use it as a general moisturizer after showers. I have dry skin and I'm not afraid of getting greasy so I really slather it on, but probably a really light application would work fine too. I started using it about a year ago when I had a mysterious rash all over my body, which never was identified, but the coconut oil seemed to help and I liked it so much that I never stopped using it. I also like to put a big spoonful right in my bath and take a long soak. I do use it in my hair sometimes too. And I use it as lube (not with condoms though)!
noodz 13th-Apr-2012 10:42 pm (UTC)
Oh and this! I"ve ever used it but I know people who have and it seems to work for them.
http://www.amazon.com/BodyGlide-BGCB-Bodyglide-Original-Anti-Chafe/dp/B005L8YVRO
also_warriors 13th-Apr-2012 11:18 pm (UTC)
I was going to recommend coconut oil, too. I have ascribed to it nearly magical properties, and it is my answer to all skin ailments. Itchy? Coconut oil. Blotchy? Coconut oil. Dry? Coconut oil. Cracked? Coconut oil. I put it on my face, hands, knees, vulva, hair, feet, anywhere. So long as you know that you aren't allergic to coconut, it' pretty gentle.
theatreant 14th-Apr-2012 09:24 pm (UTC)
I was going to suggest coconut oil as well :] It's an easy enough thing to try out and might be worth it!
kcrona1 13th-Apr-2012 10:13 pm (UTC)
I liked the suggestion of the Chafing Gel Powder. I have a similar problem, and I know that with my body type it won't go away. I actually chaffed until I bled from walking up a hill after a water park on my honeymoon, so I know how much it sucks and hurts. I've tried Boudreaux's Butt Paste (which is a baby aisle thing) and it usually works when I know I'm wearing something that I will chafe in. Just rub it in before and it keeps it from happening.
glass_bloke 13th-Apr-2012 10:25 pm (UTC)
Have a look at this product:
http://www.neatfeetcare.com/ChafingSweat-Rash-Underarm/3B-Action-Cream.html
I don't know if you'll be able to buy it where you are but it may give you a starting point. :)
owl_eyes_4ever 13th-Apr-2012 10:38 pm (UTC)
I heard baby powder is good for that!
charissa 13th-Apr-2012 10:41 pm (UTC)
I use that chafing gel (monistat I think). It goes on like a gel, but it dries to a really soft silky finish making your thighs glide. It does work great on rubbing thighs, though I found I couldn't count on it all day if it was a hot sweaty day.

Before the chafing gel, I used babypowder (doesn't last long) or sometimes antiperspirant (maybe too chemically)for desperate times.

Only thing I didn't like about using products is if my partner licks my thighs.. yeah.. then they discover something is up. Other than that, they don't notice.
cindysilver 13th-Apr-2012 10:58 pm (UTC)
If you don't want to try a whole new product, I have great results from using a tad of my rub-on powder deodorant/antiperspirant (happens to be Dove brand) on my inner thighs so they rub smoothly instead of chafing. Hope it helps!
svexsal 13th-Apr-2012 11:13 pm (UTC)
I came in here to say this. I use Dove too and it never hurts. Plus it smells nice.
sashafarce 13th-Apr-2012 11:26 pm (UTC)
I am a Disney World fiend and my partner and I go several times a year. In the warm months I use a product called Body Glide to roll over each of my thighs to prevent chafing (also use it on feet and stuff as well to keep from rubbing blisters). I got it at a sporting goods store and it lasts a good while.
inmeggsyoutrust 14th-Apr-2012 12:10 am (UTC)
In the summer months when I'm in dresses more often than not, I use regular deodorant on my inner thighs. It prevents excess sweat and helps with friction. I even keep a tube in my purse in case I need to reapply. Best thing for me.
wyldlittlepoet 14th-Apr-2012 01:55 am (UTC)
First of all, I'd just like to echo the above poster who pointed out that your body changes in your mid-20s. I'm 24, and there have been definite changes to my body-- my tummy has become a lot rounder in the past couple years! So that could be the cause of this newfound chafing.

I have problems with chafing, too, and the two things that I've found that really work are wearing bike shorts under skirts and dresses and using Vitamin A&D ointment on my thighs when I do get badly chafed. American Apparel sells bike shorts that really work for me. They don't flatten my bum any (which is a major concern for me since I'm a fan of my round bottom!) and they come in lots of fun colors and prints. They can get a little pricy, but they last for a good long time! The Vitamin A&D ointment is made for diaper rash, and I swear it is magic. If at night, I apply a nice layer of it over my thighs when they're badly chafed, by morning, they're pretty much better. In general, I find that diaper rash ointments are a great solution, because they're meant to soothe pain relatively fast.
atalanta0jess 14th-Apr-2012 02:49 am (UTC)
If you wouldn't mind, it would be great if you could put this post behind a cut. Sometimes posts about weight that include numbers can be triggering for other members.

I have heard great things about the anti-chafing sticks and such that others have described, but no personal experience.
dkwgdk 14th-Apr-2012 03:11 am (UTC)
Body Glide changed my life. I buy it in our local running store -- it comes in a stick that looks like deodorant but it's specifically formulated for chafing. It doesn't smell and it doesn't stain clothes. I use it for thigh issues along with spots where sports bras or sports tops rub or dig, and I rub it on my feet before i wear new pairs of shoes -- no more nasty rubbing and red spots!

I have always had big legs and chafing has been an issue my whole life. I can't use diaper rash ointments like A&D because they make the rash worse -- I seem to be allergic to something in them. In terms of healing skin, though, I LOVE Triple Paste. It's a diaper rash ointment with a very high concentration of zinc oxide. You can get it at Target.
girlonabridge Tagging14th-Apr-2012 12:53 pm (UTC)
OT, can you add a chafing tag to this entry so it can be found easily?

I'd never had a problem with chafing until last summer, wandering around NYC for four days and I'd almost only brought skirts and dresses.Pain.

I feel much more prepared for this summer thanks to this post!
breadsandwiches 14th-Apr-2012 05:59 pm (UTC)
My thighs used to itch, burn and sweat when I was just starting puberty and my hips grew. I went to the doctor and got prescribed eczema steroid cream, I've forgotten the name though. My inner thighs are still quite dark from the damage. I hope you can catch the problem before it leaves a mark. And FWIW my bf (the only person i've been with) has not seemed to notice/care.



Edited at 2012-04-14 06:00 pm (UTC)
bludwyn 15th-Apr-2012 11:18 pm (UTC)
I use Vaseline cocoa butter lotion, it works wonders! I don't get chafing on my thighs, but in between my calves it's something awful. I've never heard of anyone but me getting calf chafing though.
THIGHGLIDE Easy fix for chafing and no messy gels, lotions or powder17th-Apr-2012 05:47 pm (UTC)
ThighGlide.us Anti-chafing body wraps. Worn anywhere on the body you experience chafing. No more short's under the skirt.
ext_2073037 A list or products that may work for you19th-Jul-2013 01:51 pm (UTC)
You can try tight fitting clothes, lubricants, and powders but never use Vaseline. If you want to find out what the absolute best products are check out the list I made at http://chafing.blogspot.com/

Charles
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