Did you know that a single blistering sunburn may double your risk of melanoma later in life? That, in addition to the aging it causes, should be reason enough to avoid sunburn. Prevention is the best medicine – stay out of the sun between 10 and 4, wear protective clothing, eyewear, and a hat, and make a broad spectrum sunblock with SPF 15 or higher part of your skincare.
That said, sunburn can still occasionally strike, despite our best efforts. We drew from the Skin Cancer Foundation and the American Academy of Dermatology to bring you these tips for making the best of a bad situation:
Cool skin with water: Apply a cool washcloth to the skin several times a day, or take cool showers or baths. These measures will help cool and hydrate the skin and relieve pain.
Moisturize: Especially after showering, apply a moisturizer to lock in hydration – one containing Aloe Vera is ideal. Actifirm Hot Stop After Sun Quencher, rich in Aloe Vera and other botanicals, is great for stressed summer skin. For a real soother, refrigerate before applying. Avoid products with benzocaine and lidocaine, and consider an over-the-counter hydrocortizone cream if skin is especially painful.
Treat Inflammation: Ibuprofen is not only a pain reliever, but is also anti-inflammatory, so it can ease swelling, redness, and discomfort.
Hydrate: A summer sunburn draws water out of the skin rapidly. Drink lots of fluids – more than usual – in the form of water and juice to hydrate your skin and body.
Don’t touch: Leave blisters alone, and if blisters cover more than 20% of the body or if fever and chills are present, consult a medical professional.
Protect: Stay out of the sun completely until the burn is completely healed. Learn your lesson and be vigilant in the future with protective gear and broad-spectrum sunblock.
Our first recommendation is always to prevent summer sunburn by making sunscreen and protective clothing a part of your skincare regimen. Protecting skin from the sun’s harmful rays is one of the most important steps you can take in preserving skin’s beauty.