To me, summer is always a welcome change—I love when the weather starts to heat up and I get to start wearing breathable clothing (and less of it). Nothing feels better than throwing on a good summer dress on a balmy day. There's one major problem, though: thigh chafing.
Thigh chafing can be uncomfortable, to say the least. Many people experience thigh chafing in the summer (myself included). It's super common and can be caused by any number of things—walking, working out, or even just sitting with your legs crossed. "Thigh chafing happens as a result of friction when your inner thighs rub against each other and damages the skin," says Margarita Lolis, board-certified dermatologist at Schweiger Dermatology Group in Hackensack, New Jersey. "You can have red, irritated skin that may blister and burn. It's usually worse in the hot and sticky summertime when we are sweating."
Luckily, there are products out there that are formulated to help prevent thigh chafing right off the bat. These innovative products help reduce friction, meaning you can walk in shorts and skirts without worrying about painful redness or blisters later. "You want to look for creams and balms that contain petroleum jelly or zinc oxide to create a barrier on the top of the skin," says Lolis. Mona Gohara, associate clinical professor of dermatology at Yale School of Medicine and President of the Women's Dermatologic Society, recommends looking for something that's lubricating, fragrance-free, and hypoallergenic.
Before you do anything else, make sure you start with a clean slate. "The first thing to do is to use a hydrating cleanser," says Gohara. "Soap cleansers strip the skin of natural oils and further break down the [skin's] barrier, adding fuel to the fire. I like Dove Body Wash, which adds moisture as it cleanses."
The Best Anti-Chafe Sticks
"I recommend Megababe Thigh Rescue," says Lolis. "It's a soothing balm that sits on top of the skin, allowing your thighs to glide smoothly against each other. It contains ingredients like aloe to help cool the skin and grapeseed oil to support the skin's structure and help build collagen. It's in a deodorant stick applicator, which makes it super easy to apply."
Not only does this moisturizing stick help prevent chafing, but it can also be used anywhere as a mess-free body hydrator. A little goes a long way, and it melts into skin effortlessly. Throw this in your beach bag, since it's a true multipurpose product.