Sunburns just might be the most unfortunate part of summer. You laid out your towel on the pool chair or in the sand and slathered on some sunscreen all over your body. You are feeling good as you pull out a good book and go for a few swims to stay cool. The sun makes its journey across the sky faster than you’ve realized, and before you know it, it’s time to head home. You look down to see the red marks appearing on your legs and you smack yourself in the forehead for not reapplying. Yep, that one’s gonna hurt, you think to yourself as you drive home and the redness only intensifies.
It happens to the best of us. We might have left our sunscreen at home or completely space on reapplying. If you’re anything like me and your skin has an extreme sensitivity because of its pale color, you might be far too familiar with this scenario. Having dealt with a number of sunburns since I was a kid, I have become quite skilled at caring for my skin after a burn. Let’s dive into a little bit of science first.
What Is A Sunburn?
According to Dermalogica.com, a sunburn is “the skin’s response to extreme ultraviolet (UV) exposure and indicates severe damage.” Dermalogica goes on to explain that the skin kicks into a serious defense system of UV exposure within just ten minutes. Redness is the first indication of damage and this is actually just your body’s inflammatory response to the situation by dilating blood vessels.
First Line Of Defense
Of course, prevention has to be the discussed first. Sunscreen is essential for preventing those unwanted burns that feel itchy and uncomfortable for the next few days. My favorite sunscreen to use is the Neutrogena Ultra Sheer SPF 30. There really isn’t a significant difference between the different SPF levels of sunscreen, so I just like to stick to the SPF 30 because it’s the cheapest. This sunscreen is great because it blends in super quickly. It’s also very easy to apply under makeup because you get no greasy feeling. I would recommend a sunscreen to add to your skincare routine so that you don’t forget it every morning. When it comes to the rest of my body, I opt for a cheaper spray that helps in getting the hard to reach spots like shoulders and back.
Once you have a sunburn, your body has already begin its healing processing. There are two products that I rely on when surviving a sunburn. First is an aloe vera gel. I like to use the Hawaiian Tropics Hydration Aloe gel all over my body if I have a sun burn. Aloe helps to return moisture back to the skin and can help sooth the burn so it is less painful. I have also found that it really helps prevent the skin from peeling (which is always an unfortunate and annoying stage of sunburns). I also apply this product on my face in place of my moisturizer if I’ve ever had too much sun there. It works great on top of the rest of my skincare because aloe is such a gentle ingredient.
The next product is actually my regular face wash. When you get a sunburn, it’s really important to be extra gentle with your skin so that you don’t disrupt its healing process. This Equate Daily Facial Cleanser is extremely gentle on the skin. If you are use to a more abrasive face wash every night, switch it out for something a little more gentle, and definitely avoid the detoxifying face masks for a few days.
What are your best tips for recovering from a sunburn? Leave them in the comments bellow.
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