Chafing While You Run? Here’s How to Prevent It

woman thinking how to prevent chafing while running

Whether you are training for a marathon or the casual weekend jogger—there is one truth that all runners know: sometimes, chafing happens. There is nothing that can ruin that runners high quite like that burning stinging sensation between your inner thighs or the groin area. But how do you prevent chafing from happening?

It isn’t always as simple as it seems. Inner thigh chafing happens because it’s difficult to predict and very common. The good news is, there are steps that you can take to prevent unwanted thigh chafing while you run.

What Is Inner-Thigh Chafing?

Inner-thigh chafing is as uncomfortable of an occurrence as it seems. This type of chafing occurs from skin-to-skin contact from the inner thighs. It occurs when the thighs rub against each other without any type of barrier between them.

While this can happen virtually anytime someone wears skirts, shorter shorts, or dresses—it is most common among runners as there is a lot of skin-to-skin contact happening in rapid progression. It’s also common for walkers and cyclists.

However, the solution isn’t as simple as wearing different clothes. Friction from clothing or underwear can also cause chafing between the legs. This is because other factors can cause chafing to happen or cause it to worsen.

This includes:

  • Wetness or moisture on your clothing
  • Excessive sweating
  • Heat and humidity in the environment
  • Having larger thigh muscles
  • Carrying extra weight or fat in the thighs
  • Wearing fabrics, such as cotton that absorb moisture
  • Wearing adult diapers
  • Shaving or hair removal in the area

When inner-thigh chafing happens, especially with the aforementioned situations, it is no laughing matter. Chafing can seriously damage the skin on your inner thighs and cause irritation and inflammation.

Those struggling with inner thigh chafing may experience redness, itching, blisters, rashes, bleeding, or swelling. This is why it is important to know how to prevent and treat chafing.

How to Deal With Chafing When it Happens

If you find yourself dealing with a case of inner-thigh burns, it’s important to know how to stop chafing and how to treat it right away so the problem doesn’t get worse any time you move. Burns and wounds from inner-thigh chafing can make even crossing your legs uncomfortable, and daily activities may prevent your wound from healing properly if you aren’t careful.

Here are some remedies to speed up the healing process and avoid further irritation:

Lip Balm

If you have your favorite natural lip balm handy and are dealing with inner-thigh chafing on the go, this can be a great treatment option. Lip balm is only petroleum jelly mixed with other flavors. Just as it soothes dry and cracked lips, it can also soothe skin issues from inner-thigh chafing.

Just rub a little bit of the product on the affected area for the best results.

Baby Powder

Baby powder is perhaps the most common and trusted solution for treating inner-thigh chafing. Just sprinkle it on and gently pat a small amount on the impacted area. This will help dry the wound and soothe any itching in the area. If you don’t have baby powder, you can also try cornstarch or arrowroot powder.

Petroleum Jelly

Petroleum jelly is similar to lip balm with its soothing powers and will protect the area of your inner-thigh chafe and help it heal faster. In fact, this is the top-recommended solution by the American Academy of Dermatology.

Aloe Vera

While many people think of aloe vera as a sunburn solution it can help soothe itching and cool redness that comes with inner-thigh chafing. If your inner thighs are hot to the touch, similar to a sunburn, use cold or an ice-back to help soothe the redness.

Over-The-Counter Skin Ointments

If you are dealing with a particularly painful inner-thigh rash from chafing, there are also over-the-counter skin ointments that you can use on the impacted area. This includes antihistamine creams or corticosteroid creams for itching. Other options include antibacterial ointments like Neosporin or hydrogel to soothe and heal the area.

How Do You Stop Inner Thigh Chafing?

It’s important to know how to treat inner-thigh chafing when it happens, but it’s even more important to knowhow to prevent chafing from happening in the first place. While there’s no surefire way to stop it from happening, there are a few strategies that can help.

1. Wear Properly-Fitting Clothing 

If you’re wondering how to prevent chafing, one of the easiest things that you can do to help minimizeinner-thigh chafingis to make sure you are wearing the right clothing. Make sure that your clothes fit correctly as well. For example, if your shorts are too large in the legs, it can give space for your thighs to rub together while you run.

Leggings are always a great option when it comes to choosing the right pieces of running clothing. Leggings, or running tights, should fit securely and shouldn’t be too loose where they move while you run, or too tight where they are uncomfortable.

While you’re focused on your fit, make sure that you pay attention to seams. If there are seams in your clothing along your inner thighs, this can cause even more issues with chafing.

2. Pay Attention to Fabrics

Learning how to prevent chafingcan be as simple as choosing the right fabric. Wearing cotton can lead to more chafing and cause rashes.

Wearing cotton while you run can actually lead to more thigh chafing. Cotton can soak up sweat and moisture, leading to more friction and chafing and it can irritate the skin.

The right fabric will be lightweight, have some stretch to it so it can mold to your body, and above all things—be breathable and moisture-wicking. If too much moisture accumulates in the fabric, it can make chafing worse.

3. Consider Compression Shorts or Thigh Bands

Products like thigh bands and other forms of compression shorts can help anyone prone to inner thigh chafing. Compression shorts should be form-fitting but made of lightweight and breathable materials. They can be worn under your favorite pair of shorts so you can still stay cool while you work out but prevent that dreaded inner-thigh chafe.

Thigh bands are another option to wear under your workout clothing. These bands are made from soft, stretchy cloth and look like wide elastic bands. You secure them over your thighs and right where your thighs rub together the most.

4. Stay Hydrated

If you are an avid runner, hydration should already be at the top of your list, but did you know that it can also help prevent chafing? When you are dehydrated, your sweat has more salt in it which can irritate the skin and make it more sensitive. Mix irritated and sensitive skin with rapid rubbing together from running—and it’s a recipe for disaster.

how to stop chafing by drinking water

Make sure you are consistently drinking enough water every day and drinking even more on days you are planning on running.

5. Reduce Friction & Moisture with Powders, Balms & Lotions 

Heat, moisture and friction are the perfect recipe for chafed thighs and buns. Traditional body powders, anti-chafing sticks and balms can help absorb moisture and friction.

Avoid the mess of traditional body powders by using a body powder lotion that goes on smooth and dries to a thin protective powder coat.

Even better, keep those lower regions funk and friction-free with a deodorizing Powder Lotion by Super Fresh. Choose between Man Parts Lotion (for Men) and Lady Parts Lotion (for Ladies) to keep odor and chafing away.

super fresh lady parts deodorant


These particular products go on as an easy-to-apply creamy lotion and quickly dries to a powder finish—offering the perfect balance between other popular anti-chafing solutions. It will add a protective layer to the thighs and help absorb excess moisture, which is known to make chafing even worse.

Simply rub this product on your thighs before running to help reduce the likelihood of thigh burn happening while you work out. It’s a safe and effective solution to get this problem under control and one that your thighs are sure to thank you for.

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