The anti-chafing bible for your thicc thighs
Because the thigh gap is a silly myth, and we’re done playing
What is the one thing we modern Indians have in common with a foot soldier in the 600,000-strong infantry of Indian emperor Chandragupta Maurya?
Toxic bosses. Chafed thighs. The skin irritation seen when one has repeated skin-on-skin contact or constant rubbing against clothing, chafing is caused due to exercise, ill-fitting clothes, and hot weather, according to dermatologist Dr Rinky Kapoor. You can imagine how intense the chafing was for those marching all the way from Magadh (modern-day Patna) to the Deccan Plateau in the blazing sun and bone-soaking rain (Here is our guide on how to avoid being a makeup-dripping mess this season.)
Chafing can happen anywhere, from your groin and buttocks to your armpits, and even under the breasts. But dermatologist Dr Aanchal Panth says your inner thighs are “most prone to friction because of walking, coupled with moisture due to sweating.” The Mauryans may not have been able to circumvent it but modern technology and the arrival of our lord and saviour — anti-chafing products — have made it so that we can. Lo and behold, the anti-chafing bible for your thicc thighs.
The complete anti-chafing guide to fight chub rub
What should you be wearing?
Cotton is your best friend
While having thighs like the Kardashians is all the craze, there’s no rose that comes without thorns. Here, it’s the angry red bumps that pop up when said thighs are indulging in a sweaty love affair. In times like these, wearing cotton clothing will come to your rescue, says Kapoor. “It soaks up moisture and sweat and helps your skin to breathe freely. Avoid wearing silk, or synthetic fabrics such as nylon and polyester as they cause sweat-logging,” she says.
Don’t let your thighs kiss
If your legs have had it rough for a while, it’s time to consider the barrier method. No, we’re not talking about condoms — just creating some space in the codependent relationship between your thighs. Kapoor suggests wearing well-fitting clothing that creates no room for chafing. You can also try thigh bands that don’t let your thighs touch, or anti-chafing shorts.
What are the anti-chafing products to include in your arsenal?
Instead of using actual oils to moisturise, you can choose oil-based products that will give you the same results minus the stickiness.
Pee Safe’s anti-chafing stick, containing 100% natural coconut oil, can be conveniently swiped onto easily irritated areas like underarms, groin, upper knees, ankles, under the elbow, and shoe bites.
Made with anti-bacterial ingredients like witch hazel, lemon oil, and neem, Svish’s anti-chafing roll-on fights sweating and irritation while maintaining the pH of your skin. With a peachy scent, the roll-on also prevents foul odour.
If you need some heavy-duty protection, cream-based anti-chafing products are the way to go.
Sanfe’s anti-chafing and rash cream can not only be used as a preventive measure but also as a healing cream for already chafed skin. It works overtime to prevent and heal rashes caused by sanitary pads, tight clothes, waxing and working out.
For the ones who suffer from mild chafing every now and then, using a gel-based product is best because of its lightweight texture.
The anti-chafing gel by SkinEasi gives a non-greasy and non-sticky finish by forming an invisible, water-repelling layer on the top of your skin. Bonus: It’s free of any preservatives, perfumes, or chemicals.
Choose a powder-based product if you prefer a dry finish. This version by Bodywide is an upgrade on your dad’s beloved talcum powder, offering protection and healing from chafing.
The clotrimazole antifungal intimate powder is imbued with zinc oxide, which is the best for preventing and treating milder chafing according to dermatologists. The powder will also soak up excess sweat and reduce odour-causing bacteria due to its peppermint extracts, leaving you dry and fresh.
How to heal your chafed thighs?
Don’t skip your showers, especially after a workout
We know the siren call of your comfy bed is unavoidable, especially after a workout has left you chafed and burnt. But don’t give in to temptation. Panth strongly suggests never skipping your showers after a workout as they help get rid of sweat and cool irritated skin. Remember to scrub thoroughly but gently, like when you’re trying to get the skin off a tadgola without damaging the fragile jelly inside. Panth also recommends drying your thighs completely after the bath unless you want to deal with moist chub-rub.
Moisturiser is your best friend when it comes to healing chafed thighs. Kapoor suggests using aloe vera gel on slightly chafed areas to soothe them. If your skin is seriously inflamed, she advocates using petroleum jelly to calm the chafing. Panth recommends using creams with ceramides, shea butter, and cocoa butter to help heal the skin barrier in case of heavy-duty chafing.
Rule out any fungal infection
When the chafed areas are not recovering even after proper moisturising, chances are you may have a fungal infection. So you’ll need to seek prompt medical attention to resolve the issue. If you’re suspecting a fungal infection due to chafing, the chances of the infection existing in other areas of your body, like your toenails and the back of your knees, are quite high.
Break up with chub rub, once and for all. It’s not a relationship that serves you, or your thighs.
A note of caution: This story is for educational purposes with inputs from trained experts. Please consult your healthcare provider to know what suits your needs best.