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How to Treat Bad Sunburn at Home

Introduction

You might have experienced a really bad sunburn at some point in your life. Maybe you were under the sun on a beach day with your friends and you forgot to apply sunscreen. Or maybe you were on holiday and fell asleep under the scorching sun for way too long and when you woke up your skin felt all raw and burning. We don’t take sunburn too seriously because we just assume it is a natural part of being under the sun and it will be gone after a few hours. However, sunburn can actually be super dangerous and painful!

What is sunburn?

Sunburn occurs when an individual has been exposed to ultraviolet (UV) rays for too long. It can be caused by both the sun itself or artificial light sources such as tanning beds. Any area that has been exposed to the sun can develop a sunburn, including smaller areas of the body like your ears, lips, and scalp. Your eyes too can burn from the sun! The bottom line is that the sun is really strong and really damaging to our bodies, and we need to be super careful when we are under it! You’ll know that you have a sunburn if you have any of the following symptoms:

  • A difference in your skin tone
  • The skin feels hot when you touch it
  • The skin feels painful or tender, as well as raw
  • There is some kind of swelling
  • There might be some blistering on the skin, and these blisters may break
  • You might even feel the onset of fever, nauseous, and fatigued
  • The eyes might feel painful

Sunburn’s symptoms typically show after a few hours of being exposed to the sun. However, you may only be able to tell how severe your sunburn is after a few days. Usually, your skin will start to repair itself from the sunburn through the process of peeling skin. Peeling skin might cause some panic to you, but it is actually a good thing. The top, damaged layer of the skin peels off to let the fresh, healthy skin cells to show through. You might notice irregularities in color and there might be unpleasant-looking patchiness but don’t worry too much about it.

If you have severe sunburn, you should go see a doctor. Severe sunburn has the following symptoms:

  • The sunburnt area is very large and there are blisters
  • Blisters begin to form on your face and hands, and even the genitalia region
  • The skin has severe swelling and painful
  • The blisters are leaking pus and feel painful
  • A high fever
  • Dehydration

Ways to Alleviate a Sunburn at Home

Hopefully, you do not have a severe sunburn. And if your sunburn is not severe, here are some easy ways that you can treat it at home!

Use a cool compress

Soak a clean, soft washcloth or towel in cold water and hold it to your skin. You can also buy cool compress packs from the grocery store or drugstore and they might have soothing Burrows’ solution in them. This will be a good immediate relief for the heat and pain caused by sunburn.

Treat yourself to a soothing bath

A nice, cool bath will definitely help to alleviate your sunburn. Do not use any fragranced soaps or bubble baths as these can further irritate and aggravate the already sensitive and inflamed skin. To further soothe your skin, add some natural ingredients to your bathwater that will further soothe your pain and skin:

  1. Add 1 cup of apple cider vinegar. Apple cider vinegar will balance out the pH of your skin and help your skin to heal faster.
  2. Have a soak in an oatmeal bath. Oatmeal is an excellent soothing agent as it works by binding to your skin and creating a protective layer. Additionally, it boosts skin moisture levels as it helps to lock in moisture and ease inflammation.
  3. Baking soda can also help to reduce the inflammation of the sunburn. Add 2 cups of it to your bathwater.
  4. Essential oils such as lavender are also good for soothing the skin. Only add a few drops though, as lavender could irritate the skin if too much is added.


Use aloe vera on the sunburnt area

Aloe vera gel is very effective for instant relief for sunburns. You can place your tube of aloe vera gel in the refrigerator for an hour or so before applying it so that you get more of a cooling effect. Aloe vera gel is one of the most common and popular home remedies to alleviate sunburn.

Nature Republic Aloe Vera Soothing Gel

One of the best-selling items worldwide, Aloe Vera gel can be used anywhere on the body for a soothing and moisturizing feeling; it contains 92% of Aloe Vera extract.

$9.90

AROMATICA Aloe Vera Gel

Hydrate and calm your sunburnt and irritated skin with this gel that is lightweight and gentle; all while delivering deep moisture and a refreshing feeling.

$14.00

Use healing and soothing topical treatments

Tea can also be a very effective soothing compress for sunburn. There are many different ways to use it. You can brew some black tea and let it cool down, or place it in the refrigerator until it is cool, then soak a clean washcloth in it and use it as a compress on the area with the burn. Another great tea option is mint tea which has cooling properties. If your eyelids were sunburnt, you can steep some tea bags in cool water then press them against your eyelids to provide some instant relief. Petroleum jelly, or Vaseline, is one of the best high-duty moisturizers for your burnt and chapped lips.

Dermalogica Calm Water Gel

This weightless water-gel uses Hyaluronic Acid technology to hydrate dry and sensitive skin, forming a barrier against any environmental assault.

$50.00

Peter Thomas Roth Mega-Size Water Drench Hyaluronic Cloud Cream Hydrating Moisturizer

Enriched with concentrated 30% Hyaluronic Acid, this fluffy-light moisturizer will leave your skin feeling like it took a trip to the clouds; plus it lasts for 72-hours.

$156.00

Use some coconut oil as a moisturizer

After the initial burn and pain of the sunburn has been alleviated, you can apply some coconut oil to the sunburnt area to moisturize it. Your skin cells have likely been damaged and a lot of water and moisture has escaped in the process. Coconut oil is an excellent emollient substance that will lock in moisture, helping your skin barrier heal.

A’PIEU Milk One Pack Coconut Milk

Soak your skin in various minerals like real milk essence to leave it moisturized and nourished; plus hydrolyzed collagen to prevent rough skin.

$1.50

Nutiva Virgin Coconut Oil

Made of 100% organic, unrefined coconut oil, it has natural moisturizing and deep conditioning properties; be it in the kitchen or out.

$19.99


Use some kitchen ingredients to soothe the skin

You can try some kitchen ingredients that are known for soothing and cooling the skin. The best ones are milk, cucumbers, and yogurt. They can be made into a body mask to soothe the sunburnt skin.

Conclusion

Sunburnt skin can be very painful at first and will definitely inhibit your daily activities. These easy methods will provide some respite for your sunburnt skin and help the skin heal!

Recommended Products

No. ProductPriceBuy
1Nature Republic Aloe Vera Soothing Gel

One of the best selling items worldwide, Aloe Vera gel can be used anywhere on the body for a soothing and moisturizing feeling.
$9.90Shop
2AROMATICA Aloe Vera Gel

Hydrate and calm your sun burnt and irritated skin with this gel that is lightweight and gentle; all while delivering deep moisture.
$14Shop
3Dermalogica Calm Water Gel

This weightless water gel uses Hyaluronic Acid technology to hydrate dry and sensitive skin, forming a protective barrier.
$50Shop
4Peter Thomas Roth Mega-Size Water Drench Hyaluronic Cloud Cream Hydrating Moisturizer

Enriched with concentrated 30% Hyaluronic Acid, this fluffy-light moisturizer will leave your skin feeling like a cloud.
$156Shop
5A’PIEU Milk One Pack Coconut Milk

Soak your skin in various minerals like real milk essence to leave it moisturized and nourished; plus hydrolysed collagen.
$1.50Shop
6Nutiva Virgin Coconut Oil

Made of 100% organic, unrefined coconut oil, it has natural moisturizing and deep conditioning properties; be it in the kitchen or out.
$19.99Shop

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