Article by BR Natalie
If there's one thing that turns your loving Beauty Crew into Nagging Nellies it's sun safety. We're sticklers for NOT tanning the natural way and for using SPF every single day. And you know what, it's not even just the melanoma/skin cancer risk - excessive sun exposure and sun burn lead to all of those things we work so hard to prevent or minimise - dark spots, dry skin, sallow skin, flakey skin, fine lines, wrinkles, redness. The sun is also probably the reason your hair is dry, damaged, frizzy, unruly and lack lustre! So for aesthetics alone, daily SPF is the best move you can make!
But just like a disappointed Mother Hen, we won't turn our backs on you when you've been naughty in the sun, we'll tell you how to make it all better.
As soon as you realise you're burning, take action:
Don't think 'oh well, it's too late now'
- Apply SPF as soon as you realise you've been burnt to prevent further damage.
- Cover up with long sleeves and a big hat or move indoors. If that's not possible move into the shade.
Cooling Down Burned Skin:
As with any burn you'll want to cool down the skin; here's some suggestions:
- Cool showers and baths. Make sure the shower pressure is low - even water can make a burnt area very uncomfortable, if not out right painful.
- Apply chilled cucumber slices, raw potato or apple slices to particularly sore areas of skin to aid the chilling process.
- I keep these in the fridge for migraines and all kinds of booboos - they're lovely for gently cooling areas of your skin without being too cold.
Soothing Burnt Skin:
Say Hello to Vera! Aloe Vera is THE ingredient to help soothe, hydrate and repair damaged skin.
We recommend packing a tube of refreshing aloe gel, or a specific Aloe Vera after-sun treatment in your bag alongside your sunscreen; not only incase of a burn scenario, but also to refresh your hot skin after time in the sun.
As well as aloe, other ingredients with properties helpful for sunburn include;
- Oatmeal - you could tried a homemade milk and oats mask, or add oatmeal to your bath.
- Vitamin C
- Thermal water sprays (which contrary to the name, are not warm!)
Over the next week or so after being burned you're going to want to be extra moisurised. Slather your body in moisturiser at least twice a day.
This will help combat unsightly peeling and blisters and replenish vital moisture.
Your skin is sore, and even if it doesn't blister or the redness disappears within a day, avoid the following for at least a week after:
- Exfoliating (including fruit acids and enzyme peels)
- Picking or peeling skin around the area.
- Hot temperatures such as steam rooms, saunas or spa baths.
- Hair removal, waxing, plucking or shaving.
If you blister you've really been naughty and seriously over done it - don't do it again!
Don't pick or pop blisters, the fluid will be reabsorbed into the body as they heal. Avoid wearing clothes that rub blisters or sore spots, use cold compresses to ease discomfort.
If the blisters turn pus filled, hot or painful then you'll want to head to your GP.
Tip one for dealing with peeling - don't peel it further. Look it looks gross, it feels gross and it makes you want to rub until there's no skin flakes left. But all you'll do is damage other areas that maybe aren't ready to peel away yet. Just keep moisturising.
Be extra vigilant:
Your red skin is damaged - and it will be easily burnt again; so be sure to be extra vigilant with SPF.
Look after yourself:
Over exposure to the sun doesn't just affect your skin - it can make you feel pretty rotten too.
- Drink lots of water. Even if you already drink your 2 litres a day, drink more!
- Rest. Yes it might sound strange, especially if you've been lying in the sun all day, but rest is essential in combating sun exposure. Sun exposure can make you feverish, achy and give you other flu like symptoms.
- NSAIDs such as ibruprofen can help relieve swelling and soreness.
How to look after a burnt scalp:
Do you apply SPF to your head? Probably not - sunscreen and hair?! The next best thing is to wear a hat, but if you forgo any kind of protection and end up with a very sore noggin' here's some tips:
- Wear a hat to prevent further damage.
- Use a very gentle shampoo and avoid agitating your scalp. Only use conditioner on the ends.
- Rinse using refridgerated green tea - massage the tea gently in the scalp to soothe. Do not wash out.
Try a green tinted primer to neutralise red skin. Moisture Mist's Green Veil or Dermalogica Anti-Redness primer are Beauty Crew favourites