5 ways to soothe a sunburn

Sadly summer is starting to come to an end, but that doesn't mean that the fun has to end. The energy is still poppin' and the weather is still beautiful, but that also means that a sunburn could be coming your way, if you're not careful. Like me...

Ok, so three months ago, I burnt. Like crispy, stick-a-fork-in-me, burnt. It hurt like nothing I had ever felt before; and I am NO stranger to sun burns. But here's the thing: it was cloudy outside and I didn't think to put on sunscreen. Perfect excuse, right? Basically it was the kind of weather that is on the way. But fear not, my friends, today I want to tell you the 5 ways that I was able to soothe my sunburn, and will be handling one in the future!

1. aloe
Aloe has a long history of being a herbal remedy for a multitude of uses. It is derived from the Aloe Vera plant and used alone, it has "magical" skin healing properties for sunburns. It will moisturize and cool the skin. *One thing to try to do: when buying aloe, either buy the plant and open the leaves or buy straight aloe with no additives. 

2. alcohol & alum
My Great-Grandmother used to swear by alcohol and alum for everything skin related when she was alive.  After doing some research I, too, realized the benefits. Alum has actually been used for decades to cool the heat and pain of sunburn and also has several medical uses. My Great-Grandmother would put a few table spoons into a bottle of rubbing alcohol, shake it up, put the liquid on a cotton ball, and then spread it over an area. *On another note, Alcohol is very drying to the skin, so it's not a good idea to use the compound more than twice a day, and always moisturize when using it. 

3. witch hazel
I use witch hazel for EVERYTHING. It is a great anti-inflammatory, doesn't smell horrible, and doesn't burn. 

4. apple cider vinegar
As another great anti-inflammatory liquid, apple cider vinegar has been used for centuries for burn, stings, and other pains. There are many way to use it too! You can fill a spray bottle with water and vinegar, and then spray it on the burn; dip a washcloth in the water/vinegar mix, and then lay it on; or take a cool bath with the vinegar- which ever works for you. 

5. additional treatments
  • Take a cool shower. I just said COOL, not cold. You want to essentially take the heat out of your burn, not freeze yourself. Also, if you decided to not listen, you may experience additional side effects- meaning that the burn will last longer, or you can get hypothermia. 
  • Pop an anti-inflammatory. Ibuprofen is the best choice here. The idea is to take away your pain, not 
  • Take a bath with Vitamin E. It's easy to get a bottle of pure Vitamin E oil from the drugstore, or just pop open a capsule. The Vitamin E with soothe the area and help prevent blistering. 
  • Moisturize, moisturize, moisturize. Sunburned skin is always dry and then it starts to itch. So to help with the dreaded itch, moisturize with a non-fragrant lotion. 

Of course, prevention is KEY when it comes to a sunburn. The best type of prevention is not going outside, but what fun is that? So when you do decide to go out an have some fun, always remember:
  • Put on sunscreen! Sunscreen can be rather cheap or expensive (depending on your fancy), but just be sure that when slathering it on- don't forget the lesser thought about areas: hairline, neck, ears, feet, toes. And reapply as needed!
  • Think about your medications. Birth control, antibiotics, diabetes medications, some pain killer, and even muscle relaxers can make you sun-sensitive. 
  • Wear a hat. No one wants to burn on their head. 
  • Even if it's cloudy, you still need sunscreen. Just because it's cloudy out doesn't mean that the sun's harmful rays can't get to you. Trust me, they can.

Have you ever had a sunburn? 
What did you do to ease your pain?

ps... this was my sunburn :(

pps... if you want to know some sneaky ways to add SPF to your beauty routine, check them out here.

sunburn, beauty tips, sunburn tips

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