We should always try to avoid getting a sunburn even though, at times, the power of the sun can unexpectedly sneak up. The redness, irritation, peeling, pain, swelling, and unsightly blisters are highly uncomfortable. Sunburns are acute inflammation of the skin cells, caused by ultraviolet rays of the sun. Many people are unaware that the chemicals they put on their skin can cause sun exposure to produce irritation. When sunburn does occur, nature offers us many cooling, soothing remedies to take away the sting and bite.
Home Remedies for Sunburns
Here are 10 natural remedies you can try next time you spend a little too much time in the sun.
1. Aloe Vera Gel or Cream
One of the best and quickest remedies for mild sunburn, this African plant can soothe and calm burns. Aloe vera also helps to heal wounds and prevent scarring. Rub the natural form of the gel (available in many health food stores, or even better, buy an aloe plant for your home) into the location of the burn and leave on the skin. Reapply as necessary. On a side note, aloe vera also has many health benefits when taken internally.
2. Coconut Oil
Coconut oil is a cooling oil that soothes burns, simply rub coconut oil onto the affected location.
Taking a short, lukewarm bath, or using cool towel compresses aids in keeping the burn moist and cool. Do NOT use hot water, as this further strips the already damaged oils from the skin.
4. Ozonated Olive Oil
Gently rub the ozonated olive oil paste on the sunburned area and let sit. This will help the area heal without blistering or peeling. O2-Zap® works great for this.
5. Increase Water Intake
A sunburn dehydrates the insides of the body, as our natural healing mechanisms attempt to bring more moisture to the burned area. Stay hydrated to avoid the headaches and fatigue that may accompany a sunburn.
6. Sandalwood and Turmeric Paste
An ancient Ayurvedic remedy, these herbs have a cooling effect on the skin. Sandalwood is antiseptic and turmeric's curcuminoids have strong anti-inflammatory properties that soothe the skin. Mix equal amounts of sandalwood powder and turmeric with a little cool water. Apply to the sunburned area and leave for 15 to 20 minutes.
7. White Vinegar
White vinegar has been known to ease the pain of sunburn when applied to the skin. Apply to the skin as a compress, using a small towel soaked in a mixture of water and vinegar. I do not recommend using apple cider vinegar instead of white vinegar.
8. Eat More Sunflower Seeds
Increased intake of vitamin E foods can ease the discomfort of a sunburn. Sunflower seeds, as well as many other seeds, are full of Vitamin E. Other foods that are high in vitamin E include green leafy vegetables, squash, kiwifruit, and raw nuts. You can also pit vitamin E directly on a burn to cool the area.
9. Use Cooling Essential Oils
You can quickly relieve a burn by soaking a wet towel in water containing several drops of cooling essential oils. Oils that reduce burns include lavender, sandalwood, chamomile, eucalyptus, rose hips, and buckthorn essential oils. They can also be directly added to a warm bath.
10. Fresh Air
Bask in the moonlight! Burns heal quicker in the fresh air than wrapped in bandages, which can cause the burn to hold in more heat.
†Results may vary. Information and statements made are for education purposes and are not intended to replace the advice of your doctor. If you have a severe medical condition or health concern, see your physician.