For those of you who are suffering from a sunburn, here's a fast and easy at-home honey milk bath remedy, courtesy of esthetician Raechel Cunningham-Lowe. The bath will help control redness and irritation, taking the sting out of your burn. Fact: sunburns happen, but when armed with the right SPF know-how, along with some of our top sunscreen picks, you'll be better prepared for your next outdoor adventure. For instructions on soothing your skin naturally and easily, just read more.
You slather on the sunscreen and never take a trip to the beach without a hat, but sometimes, sunburns happen. Lessen the pain by eating a diet full of these foods that help prevent sunburn from occurring in the first place!
- Berries: Blueberries and raspberries contain high levels of ellagic acid, which may help protect your skin from sun damage, while strawberries are high in skin-protecting Vitamin C.
- Citrus fruits: Besides being high in Vitamin C, fruits like oranges, lemons, and limes contain limonene, a nutrient that may have skin-protecting properties.
- Green tea: The catechins in green tea can almost do it all — besides their disease-preventing properties, they have also been shown to protect against sunburn inflammation and longterm UV radiation damage.
- Lovage: The stalks of this uncommon herb resemble celery, while its leaves can also be used in salads. Grab some if you see it at your farmers market, since lovage contains high levels of quercitrin, a flavonoid that has shown to reduce UVB skin damage.
- Pomegranates: A 2006 study found that the ellagic acid in pomegranate extract had a protective effect on sunburns when participants took it orally for four weeks.
- Red grapes: These are also high in quercitrin, so pop some in your freezer and enjoy them as an icy treat on a hot Summer day.
- Tomatoes: Time for pasta night — a German study found that participants who ate a quarter cup of tomato paste every day for 10 weeks (along with about two teaspoons of olive oil) had 35 percent less skin reddening when exposed to UV radiation than those who didn't follow the tomato-paste diet. Tomatoes are high in lycopene, a carotenoid that is being studied for its ability to protect against sun damage.
- Watermelon: The Summer staple is high also in lycopene, so enjoy watermelon as much as possible during your outdoor festivities.
If you've spent the entire Summer keeping yourself from getting sunburnt, consider yourself lucky. But if you've succumbed to red, flaky skin and are fresh out of aloe gel, you don't have to head to the drugstore. Just take a gander through your pantry; you definitely have at least one of these burn remedies. Just whip up one of these DIY recipes for instantly cooler skin.
- Potatoes — yes, potatoes — are one of the more head-scratching remedies out there, but the starchy compounds help take the sting out of sunburn. Simply cut up a potato, blend it until it resembles a paste, smooth it on, and let it dry. After you rinse (with cool water, of course), your burn will be significantly more comfortable.
- A sprinkle of baking soda to a tepid tub is another quick and easy fix, especially since everyone has a box of the stuff sitting in their fridge. The baking soda balances the pH of your skin, instantly zapping the pain of a sunburn.
- If the biggest issue for you is your clothes rubbing against your sunburn (ouch!), reach for some cornstarch. Rubbing this along the areas of your skin where the chafing occurs can help stop it, as corn starch sucks up moisture, which can be the main source of chafing. Feeling blissed out yet?
- When all else fails, pop a couple ibuprofen. Not only will this cut down on the pain factor, but ibuprofen will also reduce swelling and redness.
You go to bed exhausted with the sweet scent of sunscreen after a long day in the sun, but all you can do is toss and turn. Here are some things to try before bed to ensure a well-rested Summer's night of sleep.
- Eat at your normal time: Even though it stays lighter much later, it doesn't mean you should push dinnertime to 8 p.m. or 9 p.m. Eating a heavy meal too close to bedtime can cause digestive upset and heartburn, making you too uncomfortable to fall asleep. If hot weather makes you crave ice cream after dinner, be sure to enjoy it at least an hour or two before hitting the hay so the sugar doesn't pep you up.
- Kick back with a refreshing iced herbal tea: There's something about Summer weather that makes us want to reach for a cold beer or margarita, but drinking too much alcohol at night can cause fragmented sleep. Enjoy one alcoholic beverage to satisfy your craving, and if you still need to quench your thirst, go for seltzer with fruit slices or iced chamomile tea.
- Water before bed: Dehydration is more common in the Summer because the heat makes us lose more water. Not getting enough H2O can make you feel tired all day so ensure you're getting your fill of nature's beverage by sipping some 30 minutes or so before bed (not too close to bedtime or too much that you have to pee in the middle of the night). It can help move things along digestively as well, preventing constipation in the morning.
- Go for AC for allergy relief: Warmer weather means you can finally open the windows. The sweet sound of crickets chirping or the pelting of light Summer rain can help lull you to sleep, but if you suffer from seasonal allergies, pollen will blow right in, causing sneezing, coughing, and itchy eyes to keep you up. Use a small fan on your dresser or air-conditioning to keep you cool and you'll soon love the gentle whirring white noise.
Keep reading for more tips on getting a restful night of sleep tonight.
You slathered sunscreen on your child, but he still got a sunburn — what should you do now? And how can you prevent it next time? Here moms chime in with their best tips on preventing and treating sunburns.
Even with SPF, sometimes sunburn happens, or the blaring sun can leave you with parched skin from overexposure. Fear not. Just in time for the holiday weekend, we're helping you care to your tender spots with soothing drugstore finds that are $10 or less. Quick tip: pop any of these beauty buys in the fridge for an instant shot of cooling relief.
Even the most careful of sun protection applications can result in unwanted burns and irregularly shaped tan lines (sports bra "tan," anyone?). And while it probably goes without saying that most of us are thorough with our shoulders, backs, necks, arms, and legs, there are a few places you might want to double-check before heading out into the intense heat. Discover seven spots you'll never scorch again now.
Prevention is the key to burn-free skin, but sometimes SPF lotion and a cute hat don't stand up to the Summer sun. Once you've been burned, start out by replenishing your fluids from the inside out by drinking plenty of water. If you're still in pain — or looking a little fried — then try out one (or a combination) of the following natural sunburn remedies to soothe your skin naturally.
Collodial oatmeal: Think that oatmeal baths are just for kids with chicken pox? You won't be saying so once you've soaked in some milky oatmeal after a long day in the sun. But tossing the rolled oats from your kitchen into the tub won't do. Look for a colloidal oatmeal bath like this Aveeno Oatmeal Bath ($7) that calms down and works to heal inflamed skin.
Vitamin C: Instead of popping aspirin, upping your vitamin C can help alleviate sunburn damage. "I tell my patients to take 1,000 milligrams [of vitamin C] for three days, as opposed to the recommended daily allowance of 75 milligrams, and also apply the vitamin topically," says dermatologist Mary Lupo, MD. She suggests Philosophy's Turbo Booster C Powder ($36) as a topical solution for sunburn woes.
Aloe vera: Aloe vera is king of the natural remedies. Whether you have an inexpensive gel lotion or a fresh plant at home, aloe vera will help soothe your skin naturally, since it contains nutrients that heal your skin back to health and prevent infection simultaneously. To heighten the cooling sensation, refrigerate your aloe vera gel before you apply.
How do you deal with your skin after a bad sunburn? Tell me below!
If it's been a while since you've been sun-kissed, you probably can't wait to jump into a bikini and soak up the warmth. You know it'll be quite a shock to your skin, but you think, "Hey, what's the harm in a little sunburn?" Well, unfortunately sunburns are like cigarettes — just one can increase your risk of cancer. The red, irritated, and painful skin may seem temporary, but even a slight sunburn can cause long-lasting damage. Every single sunburn you have experienced — from that excruciatingly tender burn you got visiting the Jersey Shore as a kid to the lobster-like face you got at your sister's wedding in Mexico last year — increases your risk of skin cancer down the road. In fact if you've had five sunburns in your life, your risk for melanoma doubles.
Persons with fair skin don't have much UV-protecting melatonin in their skin, so they burn easily, rarely tan, and are at a greater risk of skin cancer since they're more susceptible to severe, blistering burns. But those with dark skin can also develop skin cancer on paler areas of their body such as the palms of their hands, fingers, and feet.
Skin cancer is one of the most preventable types of cancer, and the best way to reduce your risk is to never get a sunburn. Do that by seeking shade during the peak hours of 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and when you're in the sun, wear lightweight layers and a hat to protect your skin. Apply two tablespoons of broad spectrum (UVA and UVB protecting) sunscreen 30 minutes before heading outdoors, and reapply every two hours or after swimming or sweating. Aside from reduced risk of skin cancer, you'll also have fewer wrinkles and age spots.
Once a month inspect your skin, paying close attention to skin-cancer prone areas such as your nose, cheeks, ears, neck, and shoulders so you'll be able to notice any changes or abnormal discolorations. See a dermatologist once a year to be fully checked and don't wait to make an appointment if you notice something suspicious. Skin cancer can be fatal, but if you take precautions, you can enjoy the Summer sun without having to worry.