Nothing kills a summer buzz like a sunburn! Your day of summer fun is winding down and what do you know? Despite your best efforts to apply, and reapply suntan lotion, you've wound up with a lobster red sunburn. And boy, is it painful and itchy. Symptoms like redness and pain can surface within hours of overstaying your welcome in the sun. Unfortunately, there's nothing you can do to reverse the damage, but you can take steps to soothe your skin. Here are 16 tips and home remedies for sunburn that are simple, fast, and effective.
1. Take a cool bath to cool your sunburned skin.
Add one cup of apple cider vinegar to the bath to help balance the pH (acid or alkalinity) of sunburned skin, and promote healing. Add some lavender or chamomile essential oil too to help relieve some of the stinging and pain. Adding 2 cups of baking soda will help ease irritation and redness.
2. Drink lots of water, juice, or sports drinks.
Your skin is dry and dehydrated. Replacing lost body fluids will help your skin heal from sunburn more quickly. What many people don’t realize is that the water in fruit counts, too. One large wedge of watermelon provides more than a cup of water. Other hydrating fruits include honeydew melon and cantaloupe; each contains about 5 oz of water per cup.
3. Apply cool milk with a clean cloth to your sunburned skin.
The protein in the milk cuts skin irritation and creates a protective layer around the damaged skin. Like milk, yogurt has proteins and fats that can keep painful inflammation at bay. To get relief, apply yogurt to all sunburned areas, rinse off in a cool shower, then gently pat skin dry.
4. Use lettuce.
Did you know that your favorite lunch starter has analgesic properties? To reap the benefits, boil lettuce leaves in water, strain, and then let the liquid cool several hours in the refrigerator. Dip cotton balls into the liquid and gently dab onto irritated skin.
5. Wrap an ice pack in a damp cloth and hold it over the burn.
This will absorb some of the heat from your skin, constrict blood vessels, and reduce swelling. You could even take a bag of frozen peas, for instance, and use that. But make sure to wrap it first so that you’re not placing the icy package directly against your skin.
6. Vitamin E.
Vitamin E is an antioxidant, and can help decrease inflammation caused by sunburn. Use Vitamin E oil on the skin, or take a regular dose of the supplement. Vitamin E oil also can be rubbed onto peeling skin.
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