Sunburn HURTS!!! How to Tone Down the Pain!
Many of us fair skinned stars have been there.
For whatever reasons like:
we forgot to reapply,
we didn't expect to be out in the sun for so long,
it was overcast, etc.
We've been sunburned!
What can you do about it next time?
How can you be prepared?
If it happens to you again or if it happens to someone you know,
Learn some great tips to take care of it naturally!
Here are my Top 10 Self-Care Tips for naturally treating sunburn:
Aloe Vera & Lavender Are the Most Well-Known on the List.
Have you used these others to get you through
the pain and swelling of Sunburn?
Make sure to have some of not all these remedies on hand so you aren't scrambling when a burn comes.
The last thing you want to do when you get a sunburn is go to the store to buy these remedies.
Plus, it's smart to always travel with these remedies.
Being ready is half the battle!
1. Soothe Your Skin with Fresh Aloe Vera
Almost all tropical climates and many warmer climates that have extreme sun with have aloe plants growing like bushes, so that is easy to grab. Every time I go somewhere, I always notice where the aloe plants are growing. And of course, you should always have at least one aloe plant growing in your house as a house plant. I have written about aloe many times in previous blog posts, but here I go again...This plant is the ultimate healer for burns especially sunburns!
To Apply Fresh Aloe Vera:
- The best part to use is the yellow liquid that comes out when you break a big arm off from the plant.
- Straight from this broken piece of the plant, without using your hand, put this yellow liquid right onto the burn.
- Using the aloe plant like a brush keep gently rubbing it all over the burn.
- Once you have used all the yellow part, you can save the inside of the plant for your next application.
- To open up the arm of the aloe plant simple take a knife and slice off the pokey spins on both sides of the arm of the aloe.
- Then using the knife, separate the top from the bottom. Inside is the clear aloe that is more commonly used.
- You can score the clear, flesh to help it come out or just leave it as is. I prefer keeping it attached to the layer of green skin because it's easier to apply.
- Simply rub this chunk of aloe on the burn.
- Refrigerate any leftover pieces. They keep for awhile this way.
- Keep reapplying the aloe as needed.
- Aloe stains so be careful with your clothes.
2. Stop the Pain with Lavender Essential Oil
Lavender is an analgesic, which means, it helps decrease pain. It will also reduce the chance of infection. Plus it smells soothing and calms your nerves.
To Apply Lavender Essential Oil:
- Put a few drops in the palm of one hand.
- Gently place it on the sunburned area.
The continued application of fresh aloe and lavender should heal most minor sunburns. I have found that for a minor sunburn, I have to apply both about once every hour and then as needed. Usually the next day, the sunburn is gone. You have to be super careful not to re-expose this area to more sun though because it's sensitive.
Here's a short video to show you how to apply Aloe Vera & Lavender to a Sunburn:
More Self-Care Tips for Serious Sunburns:
3. Herbal Salve - Slather the burns in herbal salve. You want to keep it well lubricated so it doesn't dry out. It's especially therapeutic if you cover the burn overnight with salve. The salve will reduce the chances of scars and severe, lasting skin damage. Here's more on healing a major burn with herbal salve.
4. Califlora - This is a great homeopathic gel. It soothes sunburn. It's more expensive than an aloe plant so I tend to save this remedy for more extreme cases. To apply it squeeze it out of the tube and put it directly on the burn. Use as needed.
5. Arnica - If the swelling is intense, I add arnica to the regiment. I take it internally to reduce the swelling and inflammation and I will even apply the gel topically to areas especially close to lymph nodes. Sometimes the swelling is causing much of the discomfort. An important time to use arnica is when you have sunburn and are traveling on a plane. The constant change in pressure can really increase the swelling. So I take arnica tablets every 4 hours. And do the next step...
6. Lymphatic massage - I'm not going to offer a full how to on lymphatic massage, but briefly if you know this tool, now is a perfect time to do it. Lymphatic massage is very gentle, broad stokes towards the heart that will help move the lymphatic fluid and reduce some of the pressure. It's done rhythmically and very lightly.
7. Stay in bed - If your sunburn is bad, then you need to just stay in bed. Staying in bed accomplishes many things. First your sunburned parts stay elevated which reduces inflammation. Second, it keeps you out of the sun. Third, it reduces your chance of infection. If any of the burn is open, you don't want germs getting into it. This is especially important when you are traveling in countries with less sanitation. Fourth, it allows your body to rest and heal. Plus you can keep reapplying your aloe, lavender, salve, and arnica without being distracted.
8. Avoid Bathing - Because your goal is to repair the skin tissues, washing them defeats the purpose. If you feel like you need to shower, take a tepid water shower. Not too hot and not too cold. Pat dry carefully not to disturb the skin regrowth. Shower as infrequently as possible. Definitely don't shave!
Other Pointers FOR ALL SUNBURNS
10. Stay hydrated! Keep drinking lots of water.
I have found these tips incredibly helpful because unfortunately, I have dealt with quiet a few burns over the years. I stand by these remedies to heal me up! And remember, have all these on hand so you are ready to help the sunburned who aren't prepared.