Sunday, July 13, 2008

Skin Care for a Sunburn

Sunburn (erythema) is your skin's natural defense against overexposure to ultraviolet rays.

Spending a day in the sun is an idea of a great time for many folks. But just one sunburn can severely damage your skin, and it can also increase your risk of skin cancer.

The best thing to do, obviously, is to take care and prevent a sunburn in the first place. Many cosmetics now have sunscreen built in, so you can protect your skin just by putting on your makeup. Avoid the sun between the hours of 10am and 3pm, when the sun's rays are strongest. Wear wide-brimmed hats, sunglasses with UV protection that wrap around to protect the skin at the corner of your eyes, long-sleeved light-colored clothing and sunscreen. Reapply the sunscreen to your skin every couple of hours, and don't forget areas like the tops of your feet and your ears. Beware of tanning beds, which can also burn your skin.

If your skin does end up getting sunburned, to care for sunburned skin you can try the following home remedies:

Take a cool shower or bath, and/or apply cool compresses to the affected skin for 15 minutes a few times a day. Gently pat your skin dry with a towel - do not rub.

Cut the leaves of an aloe vera plant lengthwise, remove the gel inside, and smear the gel on your sunburned skin.

Soak a small piece of cloth or some cotton gauze in whole milk and apply carefully to the burned skin. Leave it on for about 15 - 20 minutes, and then rinse the skin with cool water.

Slice open a cucumber and wipe it directly onto your skin.

The information provided is not a substitute for professional medical advice and care. Severe burns to the skin can require immediate medical attention. If you get a fever, nausea, dizziness, become sensitive to light or experience severe pain, see a doctor at once. Doctors can prescribe a corticosteroid cream that soothes the skin and can speed up the healing process. A family member of mine was prescribed "silver cream" for his skin after a burn injury. It's expensive, but it's worth it. Your skin is worth it. Skin is the body's largest organ, after all.

Katrina Price is an authority in skin care and cosmetics. Her website, contains great information on how to care for your skin.

1 comment:

stephhutchins said...

One thing you can do to ensure that your skin is protected while you're on vacation is to limit your time in the sun. We all know about the harmful effects of UV rays and skin cancer, but the sun has a drying effect on your skin as well. This can age you faster, and make you look older than you really are. Use a big beach umbrella at the very least to keep your skin from baking in the sun and drying out. If you're at the ocean, you should know that salt water dries out your skin as well, so limit your time in the water. Rather than spending all of your time on the beach, take some time out to do other things, like go antiquing or visit the local shops and art spots. You can also opt to apply a rich skin protectant like Shea Butter.

Making sure that you are hydrated, that you're protecting your skin from the sun with moisturizers such as Shea Butter, and limiting the amount of time you spend in the water are some great precautions to take. This way, you can really enjoy your vacation, but you will know that your body and skin are taken care of as well!

For more information about Shea Butter visit Purely Shea at