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You were all about the face mask hype. And then you dipped into foot masks, hand masks, hair masks—even belly masks when your bestie was pregnant. But something you probably haven’t dappled in yet? Armpits masks.

Your first reaction is probably, “That’s ridiculous.” But if you really sit and think about it, a detox mask for your pits makes a lot of sense. They’re two areas that need a lot of love but rarely get much attention. Here’s everything you need to know about the latest trend.

What exactly do these masks do? Armpit masks like Lavanila’s Underarm Detox Mask ($26) and Earths Purities Detox-a-Pit ($25) draw toxins out from just below the surface of your skin and stimulate lymphatic drainage to encourage an even deeper detox. The end goal is to help your armpits return to a naturally balanced state.

Right. Remind me, why is it important to detox your armpits? Your poor pits work so hard to regulate your body temperature by releasing sweat, and yet rarely is the skin given the chance to air out. Also, most antiperspirants and non-natural deodorants use toxins like aluminum, parabens, phthalates and formaldehyde to actually block the natural function of your armpits. Bottom line: Your pits need a break. 

And they’re great for folks switching to natural deodorants? Yep! Armpit masks were originally designed to help ease the transition from a regular deodorant or antiperspirant to a natural formula. For many people that transition comes with extra sweating and B.O. as your pits learn to adjust, but a clay mask can help speed up that in-between period and make you less prone to unpleasant armpit odors.

Gotcha. So what do these pit masks feel like? Will I have to keep my arms raised above my head for 15-minute stretches? While some come in a tub and can be applied with your fingers, Lavanila’s pit mask comes in a handy-dandy tube with a brush head so you can just paint the clay on with less mess. And while it works best if you don’t lower your arm, most only need to sit for 5 minutes.

Sounds good. Any last words of wisdom before we start masking? Like any skin-care process, it’ll take a few uses before you really start to see results. But in the end, spending five minutes a few times a week masking is definitely worth it once you see how clean, clear and less plain ole’ smelly your armpits can be.

RELATED: The Good, the Bad and the Smelly: We Tested 9 All-Natural Deodorants and Here’s What We Thought

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