If you get a sunburn, apply witch hazel to the burned area. Witch hazel is a solution made with an extract from the leaves, twig and bark of the Hamamelis plant, that has strong antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects that are soothing and cooling to sunburned skin.
Coconut oil contains lauric acid which helps keep skin moist. Although coconut oil is solid at room temperature, it will melt at body temperature and absorb easily into the skin. Although coconut oil has been used for tanning, it is also helpful after the sun to keep sun-damaged skin from peeling.
If you have a sunburn, a soaking bath containing oatmeal powder and two or three tablespoons of white vinegar is soothing, relieves itching and helps the skin regain its normal moisture barrier. The vinegar helps remove inflammatory compounds released by sun-damaged skin and soothes sunburn pain. Aveeno makes oatmeal powder, or you can make your own by grinding uncooked oat cereal in a blender until it becomes a fine powder.
Another natural sunburn soother is squalane, a stablized form of a naturally occurring substance derived from certain plants such as olives. Squalane guards against dehydration in sun-damaged skin. Squalane doesn’t clog pores, it soaks in quickly, it feels very light on the skin, and it has no color, odor or taste. Squalane can be purchased inexpensively in stores and online.
Before you enjoy a long fun-in-the-sun holiday weekend, here’s a natural sunburn soother. Fresh aloe gel is soothing to sunburned skin. If you don’t already have an aloe plant, you can purchase one inexpensively from a garden center or nursery. Snip off one of the fronds, squeeze out the gel and apply to your skin. Fresh aloe is better than a store-bought product because the gel’s ability to soothe decreases rapidly after it has been extracted. If the soothing effect wears off, reapply.