Being sun-savvy doesn’t always mean you can avoid the sun, especially when you’re on holiday or working outside.
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Here are eight ways to soothe your sunburnt skin.
1. Moisturise: Choose the richest moisturiser or cream and apply immediately after exposure. Avoid moisturisers that have alcohol or those with acids that can irritate the skin. You may also chill the bottle in the fridge and use the cream when it is cold. Do this regularly for maximum absorption.
2. Avoid soap: Soap can strip the skin of moisture. If you must use soap, opt for a moisturising cleanser and avoid scrubbing or rubbing the sunburnt area. Avoid shaving, waxing or using a loofah until the area has healed.
3. Bathe with bicarbonate of soda: Bicarbonate of soda works by balancing your skin’s PH, which aids in healing. It is also soothing on irritated skin. Use half a cup of bicarbonate of soda in your bath and soak for 15 minutes.
Alternatively, add one tablespoon of bicarbonate of soda to a bowl of cold water. Dip a washcloth in the water and use this mixture to soothe the affected area.
4. Use aloe vera: Aloe vera gel works for all sorts of burns, as it has anti-inflammatory compounds that calm the skin. For added effect, store the aloe vera gel in the fridge and use when chilled.
5. Stay hydrated: Heal your skin from the inside by drinking plenty of liquids.
6. Stay protected: Wear protective clothing when outdoors, especially between 10am and 3pm. It also important to use sunscreen.
7. Use a compress: Use a cold compress or ice pack wrapped in a washcloth and hold it over the burnt area. Ensure you do not place the compress directly on your skin. Wrap it in a washcloth, as your skin is sensitive.
8. Check your medication: Some antibiotics, pills or fungal medications can increase the skin’s sensitivity to the sun, therefore, ensure you educate yourself on the side effects. It may be wise to avoid the sun while taking certain medication.
Remember that prevention is better than a cure. However, if you do get sun burned, there are plenty of home remedies.
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