It’s summertime, which means you may wind up suffering from at least one sunburn. In the future, it’s best to make sure you slather your entire body in sunscreen, then reapply every 90 minutes or so to make sure you don’t ever get another sunburn. Unprotected sun exposure can lead to skin cancer and signs of aging, so you don’t want to mess around with it. On the off chance that you do wind up a little bit red this summer, here are the best ways to soothe the sunburn so you can get back to your old self.
1. Lie down and Apply Cool Cloths to the Affected Areas
A sunburn is surprisingly draining on your energy levels, isn’t it? Kill two birds with one stone by lying down and treating the sunburn at the same time. Wet a few washcloths with cool water and wring them out. Then, lay them gently on the sunburned areas. Rewet the cloths as often as necessary as they warm up. Don’t feel bad if you fall asleep and take a nap – you probably need it!
2. Toss Some Oatmeal in a Bath and Soak for Awhile
Oatmeal is super soothing and is ideal for sunburned skin. Put some into a tub of cool water and ease yourself into it and take a good, long soak. The cool water will draw the heat from the sunburn and soothe the pain and irritation at the same time. The water has to be cool or it’s not going to do you any good.
3. Rub Some Aloe Vera Cream or Gel on Your Skin
Aloe vera is a magical cure for sunburn that has been used for generations. In fact, if you have an aloe vera plant, you can snap a leaf off and rub the gel that bursts out directly on your sunburn. If you don’t, go to your local drugstore and buy an aloe vera cream or gel and apply it generously to the area several times per day. The cream will soothe the burn and help control the pain and discomfort.
4. Pump up the Fluids so You Don’t Get Dehydrated
A sunburn often results in dehydration. Think about it. You’re burning, which means you’re probably out in the heat and are losing fluids through sweat. Sometimes, a sunburn can make you feel nauseous or fatigued, which is likely because you’re dehydrated. Drink extra fluids for the next few days to keep yourself hydrated and help speed the healing process.
5. Pop a Couple of over the Counter Pain Pills
Acetaminophen and ibuprofen are your best bets here, and are inexpensive and easy to find. They are perfect for daytime use, like when you have to go to work and can’t lie down. Not only will the pain meds help with the discomfort caused by a sunburn, but they’ll also help reduce swelling. Make sure you follow the dosing directions closely for the best results.
6. Brew a Pot of Peppermint Tea and save the Tea Bags
Tea is soothing for your skin, but peppermint tea, specifically, is often recommended for a sunburn. You can apply the actual tea to your skin on a washcloth or by mixing it into a cool bath. Or, you can lay the actual tea bags on your sunburn. Chill the tea or the bags before use. The mint has cooling properties that can soothe a sunburn and leave you feeling better in no time.
7. Slice up a Cucumber and a Potato
Both veggies have compounds that are known to cool a sunburn and reduce swelling. And all you have to do is rub the slices gently on the affected area to experience relief. Chilling the slices before use has more of a positive effect than using room temperature ones.
How do you soothe a sunburn? What steps will you take this summer to prevent getting burned in the first place?