Summers can be soothing for some while irritating for others. Too much of sun can be harmful to your health and skin. While generous doses of Vitamin D can be garnered in this weather, it can get very discomforting for your delicate skin. The UV rays of the sun can cause sunburns and tanning along with many skin problems such as freckles, pigmentation and other early signs of ageing. The damage is more so if you belong to a lighter skin category.
Excessive exposure to sun triggers the skin’s melanin production, which in turn could result in darker or uneven colour of the skin. Too much of sun can crush the protective effects of melanin, thereby killing many living cells and triggering excessive blood flow. This in turn, results in inflammation of the exposed area. It is a common knowledge that our skin is the largest barrier of germs, both physically and chemically.
Our skin is also largely responsible for the regulation of our immune system. High doses of UV radiation can damage this and make you sick. Extreme exposure to harmful sunrays can cause blisters, pain, peeling and itching. Let us have a look at some natural home remedies to sooth sunburns at home.
- Coconut oil is often the undermined yet the most powerful product to treat sunburns. A versatile home remedy can be used to cure sunburn the next time you get inflamed by the sun. Coconut oil has fatty acids that assist in reduction of the inflammation caused be the strong sunrays and combats dryness by moisturising the skin. It also functions as a sunscreen by managing to block about 20% of the UV rays.
- Cucumbers are another common food item that can be found in almost every household. They are made up of about 95% of water which makes them hydrating and cooling on the skin. There is actually a science behind placing those cucumbers slices onto your eyes during facials. Cucumbers help in reducing the inflammation and swelling by locking the pro-inflammatory enzymes, when placed topically on the skin. Surprisingly, these enzymes are similar to those present in anti-inflammatory drugs such as aspirin and ibuprofen.
- Aloe Vera, often known as the miracle gel, is a common home remedy for sunburns. Its succulent leaves, when cut from the middle disperse a clear gel, that when applied onto the inflamed surface, helps in reducing the redness and pain largely. It also helps moisten and soften the skin as well as supporting wound healing. Aloe Vera in its natural form that is obtained straight from the plant leaves works best since store bought Aloe Vera gels might contain some chemicals. It is one of the plants that need minimum care so growing one in your balcony or backyard should not be a problem. However, not much is known as to why aloe vera works on alleviating sunburn, but what is known is that it is made up of more than 75 chemical compounds that have many magical benefits for the skin and hair.
- Apple Cider Vinegar has many home remedial uses to its name, sunburn treatment being one of them. A strong natural concoction needs to be diluted before use to avoid any unpleasant properties. In its raw form, apple cider vinegar can be harmful. Though there is no prescribed ratio, 1:1 is a safe ratio to start with. You can either add apple cider vinegar to your bathing water or dilute the vinegar with water and gently pat in the affected areas. Application with a spray bottle also works.
- Tea is a staple at many places in the mornings and evenings. Do not throw those tea bags yet. You can actually use those tea bags for your sunburn. Store those black and green tea bags in refrigerator for some time. Once they are chilled, keep the bags on the affected areas. The tannic acid and Theo bromine present in black and green tea is known to have inflammatory elements, thus turning down the heat of the burns. Another chemical that helps in sunburn is catechins. Catechins in both green and black tea help in repairing skin damage. Its anti-oxidants defend against free radicals and reverse the damage caused by excessive sun exposure.
- Witch Hazel is a widely used vibrant yellow plant popular among Native Americans for the treatment of swelling and inflammation. The plant’s fresh dried leaves, stem, bark or twigs are distilled with water and applied directly on the affected area. One can also extract tannic acid from the plant.
- Staying hydrated is definitely a wonderful and easiest way of counterbalancing sunburn. If your body is under drought, it falls victim to sunburn easily. On the other hand, if your body is well hydrated, it counterbalances the tanning and sunburn effects on the skin. Excessive sun exposure can cause dehydration and eventually your body is going to experience drought. Hydration will help body to prevent sunrays from entering into the body by pushing the water to the skin’s surface and away from the body.
- One of the easiest ways of beating the heat is to take cool showers twice or thrice a day. Showering not only brings your body temperature down but also brings a relief to the sunburn areas. However, be careful not to step into freezing cold or very high water pressure showers. Extreme temperatures can hamper the cooling process of the body and may instead harm you. Gentle lukewarm water is best to relax. Use as little bathing products such as bath oils and soaps as necessary. Avoid vigorous running to prevent body from being stripped of its essential oils. Just take a cool shower and pat yourself dry.
These are a few simple ways of beating the heat this summer and treating sunburn at home. Also protect yourself from the sun with imported sun protection products.