The back to school commercials may have begun, but that doesn’t mean summer‘s necessarily over “ especially with a long weekend still ahead of us, and seemingly countless days of sun and heat on the horizon. But naturally, if you’re anything like this writer (freakishly pale), you’re already well aware that August means nothing but UV wrath and its painful consequences, so here’s our guide to sunburn SOS.
Naturally, the best way to beat sunburns is to avoid the sun altogether, but if you’ve got to head out under the cold light of day, make sure you team up with SPF and a wide-brimmed hat to block out the UV that seeks to harm. Drinking lots of water will also help boost your natural UV-fighting abilities, and by moisturizing your skin and staying hydrated, you’ll prevent the leathery conditions that speed up the burning process “ as well as a sunburn’s best friend, heat exhaustion.
All About Aloe
But alas, you can’t win them all, and if you’ve found yourself a victim of sunshine’s relentless grasp, you’ll want to pick up some aloe to soothe your skin and to ease the pain without shocking or burning further. You may be tempted to moisturize a burn to prevent peeling, but a scented lotion can cause permanent damage thanks to its chemical properties (like perfume). All-natural aloe-based products will not only take the pain away, but keep your skin hydrated “ which can reduce peeling, scarring or altering skin pigment.
Sunburns may seem like a topical condition, but if you’ve spent a day in the sun, you’re probably tired and suffering from dehydration if you’ve gone liquid-free. Sunburns can be a symptom of heat stroke or heat exhaustion, so to help your skin (and body) repair itself, start drinking as much water as you can, but sip slowly if you’re having digestion problems. (The last thing you want is clinical dehydration after already being slightly dehydrated.)
Once your burn fades into a tan, you may think you’re out of the water when it comes to skin damage. And while we shouldn’t need to tell you that a tan is just as damaging as a sunburn can be, we should remind you to keep moisturizing your post-burned skin so that it doesn’t take on a leathery aftermath. Sunspots, moles and even wrinkles can follow a serious sunburn (and even too much tanning), so to keep your skin looking its best, stick with a vitamin E body butter or a moisturizer to prevent damage in the future.