How to treat sunburn

While summertime brings plenty of outdoor activities, it also brings along the potential risk of getting a nasty sunburn. Whether you forgot to apply sunscreen or spent too much time under the scorching sun, dealing with sunburn can ruin any summer holiday.

But fear not! In this article, we'll explore effective and soothing methods to treat sunburn and promote healing. From home remedies to over-the-counter options, we'll cover practical tips to alleviate pain, reduce inflammation and prevent further damage. Find out more below.

What is sunburn?

Sunburn is like a sneaky villain that strikes when you least expect it, leaving your skin red, hot and angry. This occurs when you overexpose yourself to the sun's harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays. When your skin gets bombarded by these rays, it fights back by turning red and inflamed, causing that notorious sunburn sensation.

Sunburn isn't just a temporary annoyance — it can have long-term effects on your skin health. It increases the risk of wrinkles, dark spots and even skin damage. So, while sunburn may seem like a harmless souvenir from a sunny summer's day, it's crucial to take it seriously and protect your skin.

What are the symptoms of sunburn?

Sunburn comes with an array of symptoms that tell you your skin is not happy with the sun's wrath. If you’ve had a run-in with the sun's UV rays, you can expect a vibrant red shade that’s very hot to the touch. In extreme cases, you may even see blistering on the surface of your skin.

Sunburn can also bring discomfort in the form of pain and tenderness — feeling extremely sore when pressure is applied. Additionally, you might experience itching, tempting you to scratch the affected areas.

In the following days, your sunburned skin may start to peel, revealing fresh skin underneath. It's your body's way of shedding the damaged layers and attempting to rejuvenate itself.

How long does sunburn last?

Mild sunburn usually takes about 3 to 5 days to heal, while more intense burns can stick around for a week or even longer. In fact, sunburn that has begun to blister typically takes up to 10 days to fully recover. The worst part typically hits within the first 24 to 48 hours, when your skin feels like a sizzling pan.

But as the days pass, the redness will calm down, and your skin may start to peel, revealing a fresh layer. That said, it's important to resist the temptation to peel or pick at the skin, as it can lead to further irritation and potential scarring.

How to treat sunburn

Have the sun's pesky UV rays got the better of you? Don’t worry! From cooling remedies to discussing whether aloe vera works, we'll dive into the world of sunburn and explore the most effective ways to treat and soothe your fiery skin. Take a look at our tips and tricks below.

Take a cool shower

The sun's heating of your skin to scorching temperatures is perhaps one of the most uncomfortable aspects of having sunburn. But there are ways to quickly relieve this symptom and bring the temperature of your skin back down to normal levels. Start by taking a cool shower or bath, washing with a mild, fragrance-free soap.

Once you begin to feel some relief, pat dry your skin with a soft towel before slathering on some after-sun cooling gel. A cool shower is not only a great method to reduce the temperature, but it's also highly effective at relieving the itch and preventing blistering.

Apply aftersun or aloe vera gel

If you’ve been unfortunate enough to get on the wrong side of the sun's UV rays, rehydrate your skin as soon as possible. In fact, a painful sunburn is your skin's reaction to desperately requiring moisture.

So, when treating sunburn, applying our silk hydration air soft after sun or natural aloe vera gel can provide instant relief and aid healing. After a cool shower, gently pat your skin dry before applying a generous amount of our after-sun lotion or pure aloe vera gels to the affected areas. These products are free from unnatural, harmful chemicals, helping to moisturise and soothe the skin. These work by actively reducing redness and inflammation, leaving your skin silky and soft.

Remember, reapply the lotion or aloe vera as needed throughout the day to keep the skin hydrated!

Drink water to prevent dehydration

Treating sunburn involves more than just topical care. It's essential to hydrate your body from within by drinking enough water throughout the day — to replenish fluids and prevent dehydration caused by sun exposure.  Aim for at least 8-10 glasses of water daily, and consider incorporating hydrating foods like fruits and vegetables into your diet. However, make sure to avoid caffeinated and alcoholic beverages, as they can further dehydrate your body.

Water is a natural remedy that supports your overall well-being and aids in sunburn recovery. So, keep sipping and give your skin the hydration it deserves.

Cover your skin to prevent further sun burning

Perhaps the most effective method is to cover up your skin with the appropriate clothing. By covering up, you create a physical barrier between your skin and the sun — reducing the risk of additional sunburn and allowing your skin to heal.

Always opt for loose, lightweight clothing when you’re spending time outdoors. Tightly woven linen fabrics are a great choice for keeping cool but staying protected from the sun. You could also choose to wear a wide-brimmed hat to shield your face and neck from direct sunlight, as well as a pair of large sunglasses.

Take over the counter pain relief to reduce discomfort

It is not uncommon for your sunburn to cause you considerable pain — after all, your skin has taken a beating from the sun. In this case, it’s best you head to your local pharmacy to get some over-the-counter pain medication to take the edge off some of the symptoms. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen or aspirin can help reduce pain, inflammation, and swelling associated with sunburn.

 It's important to note that OTC medications are meant to supplement other sunburn treatments and should not replace proper skin care and hydration.

It’s clear that treating sunburn requires a combination of soothing measures and preventive actions. However, while sunburn happens to the best of us, the sleepless nights, high temperatures, and itching skin can all be prevented by the use of your trusted SPF. With our sunscreen in tow, you can enjoy a stress-free summer.