Ever been burned on a spot your SPF missed? Don’t worry, you’re not alone. As cautious as we can be about sun protection, sometimes our trusted SPF, a straw hat, and shade aren’t enough to avoid the dreaded summer burn.
Not only can sunburns cause age spots, dehydration, and a rough texture, but they can seriously hurt, too! A couple of years ago during a Fourth of July party, my daughter seared her leg when she bumped into a grill and wound up with a second-degree burn. While in the emergency room, the doctor told us how essential it is to run cool water on the wound immediately after we get burned because the skin continues to burn after the fact.
Studies have shown that this happens after your skin is sunburned, and can continue for two to four hours after being exposed to UV rays. If you do suffer from a burn, the best next step is to cool it down ASAP. Here are some of our favorite natural remedies to soothe post-sun skin:
- Dip a soft washcloth into cold milk and apply as a cold compress to affected areas. The milk has enzymes, fats, proteins, and vitamins that can calm inflamed skin.
Spritz the Lavender Toning Mist ($34) onto affected areas to cool and heal them. Studies show that lavender soothes skin, making it an ideal after-sunburn natural remedy.
- Avoid harsh facial cleansers on sunburned skin—instead, opt for one with a coconut oil base like the Coconut Jasmine Pre-Cleanse Oil ($32). High in saturated fats, this superfood ingredient also helps heal itchy, peeling skin.
Bonus: As a preventive measure, drink green tea, which has polyphenols that may offer sun protection. In a recent study, participants drank green tea daily, and after six weeks, they showed 16% less sunburn than a group that simply drank water and was exposed to the same UV light. After 12 weeks, that number increased to 25%.
You can’t always control when or where sunburns will happen, but treating your skin kindly post-burn is your responsibility.