It’s been HOT down here in Texas. Triple digits every day, with a heat index that’s even higher. Thankfully we have decent A/C, but my boys much prefer to be outside. Which means that I end up being outside, too. So of course, I liberally slather them in sunscreen.
And mid-week, I ran out of sunscreen just as I was putting it on The Baby. Instead of taking the few minutes to mix up another batch, I checked to make sure both of the boys were covered and we headed outside. It would only be a little while….
By the time we came back in, both the boys were fine…but I was very much NOT. My shoulders and back gave cooked lobster a run for its money. And forget laying down. I was seriously hurting.
I immediately jumped in an ice cold shower and dumped some apple cider vinegar over myself to help stop the burning (seriously). After I dried off, I whipped up a batch of my sunburn soother for quick and easy application over the next few days.
DIY Sunburn Soother
If you’d like to not smell the apple cider vinegar (I don’t blame you!), add a few drops of essential oils. My favorites to add to this spray are:
- 10 drops lavender essential oil
- 10 drops peppermint essential oil*
- 2 drops copaiba essential oil
Grab an 8-ounce glass spray bottle (remember, the chemicals in plastics don’t like essential oils if you’re using them) and a metal funnel. Add the aloe, ACV, the essential oils (if you’re using them), then add distilled water to fill. Gently give it a shake, and spray it on your sunburn.
You can reapply as often as needed. If you are super uncomfortable, you can always add additional natural sunburn remedies to give you some additional relief.
I’ve actually used all of these myself, and my favorites by far are the ACV, coconut oil, and oatmeal bath in combination with my spray.
Aloe Vera Gel
I actually keep a bottle of aloe vera gel in the fridge to help increase the natural soothing properties of the aloe. Smalls keeps asking me why there’s a “no eat” item in the fridge.
Apple Cider Vinegar
I honestly don’t know why this works, but it does. You can either soak a washcloth in ACV or (like me), dump it over you in the shower. It helps to take the heat out of the burn.
Baking Soda Bath
You can either soak a washcloth in a baking soda mix or add a cup to a cold bath and soak. If you choose to do this, please make sure that you set a timer and get out after 20 minutes so you don’t dry out your skin.
I keep oatmeal in my bathroom because it’s so versatile. For sunburn relief, simply add 1/4 to 1/2 cup of quick cooking oats to a cool bath. Like the baking soda bath, don’t soak too long. More than 30 minutes can actually make your sunburn worse.
Sea Salt Bath
Sea salt is great for pulling the heat out of burns and is surprisingly soothing. Add 1/4 cup of sea salt to a cool bath. Salt can be drying, so make sure that you get yourself out after no more than 20 minutes.
Though controversial, I use (and love colloidal silver) for a number of things, not the least of which is burns. Between this and lavender oil, I very rarely have any kind of burn that isn’t healed in a matter of days. It’s naturally antibacterial, to boot.
Raw honey is awesome for soothing burns. It’s another one that’s antibacterial and antiseptic and helps to heal wounds. It’s kind of like nature’s Neosporin.
Cold green tea is so incredibly soothing! I steep 2-3 bags in 8 ounces of water and allow it to cool (you can add a few ice cubes if you’re desperate), then apply to the skin with a washcloth. It helps to take the sting out of burns (and it smells good!)
Coconut oil is another natural antibacterial and antiseptic and will help to keep your skin moisturized, which can help prevent peeling.
Not everyone will be able to use all of these sunburn soothers successfully. Everyone’s body is different and has different sensitivities. Try one or two and see how you feel after using them. If they work, great. If not, try something else. Eventually (maybe sooner rather than later) you will figure out your go-to sunburn soother.
And don’t forget your Premium Starter Kit! If you don’t have oils in your house, once you get them you’ll wonder how you ever lived without them. I recommend starting here:
What’s your favorite sunburn recipe?
*Eliminate the peppermint essential oil from the recipe if you will be using it on children under 6 years old.