Sometimes we apply sunscreen and still end up with a sunburn. Whether you missed a spot and ended up with a splotchy, red burn or you forgot to reapply and the summer sun singed right through your protective layer of sunscreen, you can treat the sunburn to relieve yourself of the irritating symptoms. Below are three natural remedies to apply to your burned skin that can help lessen the pain, itchiness, and peeling.
Baking Soda and Oatmeal
Not accustomed to taking baths? Well your sunburn may necessitate it. Since a shower head’s piercing sprays may irritate your burn further, try drawing a bath for yourself and relaxing in the water. Do not make the water too hot as this will only sting your burned skin. Instead, add a couple of tablespoons of baking soda and a cup of oats into the cool water. You will not turn into an oatmeal cookie, I promise. Spend 15 to 20 minutes in this strange new concept of a bath and watch as the redness diminishes. The baking soda works to minimize lasting sun damage and the oats counteract the irritation by replacing the moisture back into your skin. Once you have sufficiently soaked, pull yourself out of the tub and pat dry. Do not rub yourself with a towel as this can damage your already-delicate skin further.
Aloe Vera Plant
Yes, you can buy aloe vera gel in a container at the grocery store and keep it in your refrigerator until the time comes when you need to soothe a sunburn. However, you can also employ an even more natural way by purchasing an aloe vera plant. This succulent contains the gel that we see in bottle form at the grocery store. For years, people have used this natural remedy for skin irritations, stomach aches, and kidney infections. Just pick a leaf off of your plant and break it in half. Lather the gel that oozes out onto your sunburn. You will notice an immediate soothing and cooling effect on your skin.
Apple Cider Vinegar
You may have heard of drinking apple cider vinegar to help with digestive issues and balance your body’s pH. But have you heard of using it to relieve sunburn irritation? The vinegar immediately works to restore your pH levels from the outside in, soothing the pain, reducing redness, and preventing peeling. You may smell like salad after you finish the process. But wouldn’t you rather smell a little vinegar-y than have to waddle around trying to make sure your pants don’t rub against your sunburned thighs? I say it’s worth it.
If you like the idea of a bath, then draw yourself a cool bath and pour 1-2 cups of ACV into the water. Soak in the water for at least 10 minutes. This works especially well if you have a full body burn.
If your burn is centralized in one location, like your shoulders or calves, fill a bowl with cool water and add ½ cup ACV. Plunge your washcloth into the bowl, wring it slightly, and then dab your irritated skin with the washcloth. After the washcloth has warmed to your skin, return it to the water bowl and start again. Continue for about 10 minutes.
Even if you return home from your pool or beach day and has successfully protected yourself from a sunburn, you can still use any of these three natural remedies to restore and your skin with the hydration and nutrients it needs to stay supple and soft. Also, read up on which sunscreens are best for your skin here!