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Underarm vs. Armpit: What's the Difference?

Edited by Aimie Carlson || By Janet White || Updated on November 18, 2023
Underarm refers to the area beneath the arm, often related to clothing or movement, while armpit specifically denotes the hollow under the shoulder where the arm joins the body.

Key Differences

Underarm often relates to the area beneath the arm, especially in context to clothing or deodorants, emphasizing a focus on hygiene or fabric coverage. The armpit, however, is more anatomically specific, referring to the hollow or cavity under the shoulder joint where the arm connects to the body.
In sports and physical activities, the term underarm is commonly used to describe movements or actions involving the area beneath the arm, like an underarm serve in tennis. Armpit, in contrast, is less frequently used in such contexts and is more anatomical, describing the exact location on the body.
When discussing fashion and clothing, underarm is a term often used to describe the part of a garment that covers this area, such as the fit or measurement of the underarm of a shirt. Armpit, though, is rarely used in fashion terminology, remaining a term for the physical body part.
In the context of personal care products, underarm is widely used to refer to products like deodorants or antiperspirants, which are applied to this area of the body to manage sweat and odor. Armpit, while describing the same body part, is less commonly used in product marketing and descriptions.
Underarm is a term with broader applications, extending to movement, clothing, and personal care, while armpit remains primarily an anatomical term, describing a specific body part with less emphasis on its relation to activities, garments, or products.

Comparison Chart

Primary Context

Clothing, movement, personal care
Anatomical reference

Usage in Sports

Common (e.g., underarm serve)
Less common

Relation to Fashion

Used in garment descriptions (e.g., underarm fit)
Rarely used

Personal Care Products

Frequently mentioned (e.g., underarm deodorant)
Less mentioned

Anatomical Specificity

Less specific, more functional
Highly specific, less functional

Underarm and Armpit Definitions


Underarm refers to the area beneath the arm.
She applied antiperspirant to her underarm.


Armpit refers to the hollow area under the shoulder where the arm joins the body.
He felt a pain in his armpit.


In movement or gestures, underarm describes the lower side of the arm.
She carried the puppy in her underarm.


Armpit is an anatomical term describing the body part at the junction of the arm and torso.
She checked the lymph nodes in her armpit.


In sports, underarm describes actions performed with the arm below shoulder level.
He executed a perfect underarm throw.


Armpit is used to describe the exact location of certain medical symptoms.
The rash started in his armpit.


Underarm is used in fashion to denote the part of clothing covering this area.
The dress has a snug underarm fit.


In casual language, armpit can refer to an unpleasant or undesirable place.
They called the rundown town the armpit of the state.


Underarm is associated with hygiene and the use of personal care products.
This deodorant is specially formulated for sensitive underarm skin.


Armpit sometimes denotes a warm, protected area, metaphorically.
The kitten curled up in the warm armpit of its owner.


Located, placed, or used under the arm.


The hollow under the upper part of the arm at the shoulder.


(Sports) Executed with the hand brought forward and up from below the level of the shoulder; underhand.


(Slang) The most miserable or undesirable place in a particular area.


The cavity beneath the junction of the arm and shoulder.


Somewhere or something considered unpleasant or undesirable.
The armpit of America


The hollow beneath the junction of the arm and shoulder; the axilla.


The hollow under the arm where it is joined to the shoulder;
They were up to their armpits in water


What is an underarm?

The underarm is the area beneath the arm, often associated with clothing or movement.

What is an armpit?

The armpit is the anatomical hollow under the shoulder where the arm connects to the body.

Can armpit be used metaphorically?

Yes, armpit is sometimes used metaphorically to describe an unpleasant place.

What products are typically associated with the underarm?

Personal care products like deodorants and antiperspirants are often associated with the underarm.

Is underarm hygiene important?

Yes, maintaining underarm hygiene is important for health and comfort.

Are there health concerns specific to the armpit?

Yes, issues like infections or lymph node swelling can occur in the armpit.

Is underarm used in sports terminology?

Yes, underarm is commonly used in sports to describe certain movements or actions.

Are underarm and armpit interchangeable?

While they refer to similar areas, they are used in different contexts and are not always interchangeable.

Do armpits have medical significance?

Yes, armpits can be important in medical exams, especially for checking lymph nodes.

How is underarm related to fashion?

Underarm is used to describe the part of a garment that covers this area.

Why is underarm important in clothing design?

Proper underarm fit is essential for comfort and mobility in clothing design.

Is the term armpit anatomically specific?

Yes, armpit is an anatomically specific term.

How do underarm and armpit differ in medical contexts?

Underarm is less commonly used medically, while armpit is specific for medical examinations.

Is it common to have sweat glands in the armpit?

Yes, the armpit has a high concentration of sweat glands.

Is underarm care part of personal grooming?

Yes, underarm care is a significant aspect of personal grooming.

Can armpit refer to anything other than a body part?

Informally, armpit can refer to an undesirable or unattractive location.

Can underarm also refer to a type of throw in sports?

Yes, an underarm throw is a type of throwing action in some sports.

Do underarm movements vary in different sports?

Yes, underarm movements can vary significantly across different sports.

Does underarm involve muscle movements?

Yes, various muscle movements occur in the underarm area.

Are lymph nodes present in the armpit?

Yes, lymph nodes are present in the armpit and are important for the immune system.
About Author
Written by
Janet White
Janet White has been an esteemed writer and blogger for Difference Wiki. Holding a Master's degree in Science and Medical Journalism from the prestigious Boston University, she has consistently demonstrated her expertise and passion for her field. When she's not immersed in her work, Janet relishes her time exercising, delving into a good book, and cherishing moments with friends and family.
Edited by
Aimie Carlson
Aimie Carlson, holding a master's degree in English literature, is a fervent English language enthusiast. She lends her writing talents to Difference Wiki, a prominent website that specializes in comparisons, offering readers insightful analyses that both captivate and inform.

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