If you enjoy fun in the sun, you probably know the pain of a sunburn. Here are some natural products that can offer relief from the pain. Don’t forget the canines, either! If you have a short-haired dog, they can get sunburned too.
(* means canine-friendly).
- Aloe vera*: All sun-worshippers should know this one. If you are prone to sunburns (or fire), your home should have an aloe plant. Pluck a leaf and peel it open. Some people will refrigerate the leaves before application for added relief. You can also mix it with vitamin E.
- Milk or Yogurt: This one may surprise you but many swear by it. Applying milk or yogurt to your skin will help instantly cool it. No need to worry about calories here, so go for regular rather than low-or-fat-free. (Bonus: 4oz plain yogurt, 1oz of aloe vera gel and 15 drops of lavender oil is even more effective). Topically, you can try these remedies on your dog, but dogs can have sensitivities to dairy products (and let’s face it: they WILL try to eat it). Some non-sweetened yogurt is OK for dogs so if you are going to try this remedy on Fido, go with the yogurt.
- Coconut Oil is successful at soothing the burn and the associated itch, while also moisturizing the area. This will help reduce peeling and scarring.
- Lavender*: Adding lavender essential oil to cool water, and then spraying it over your burn will provide immediate relief. Like coconut oil, it will help reduce scarring. For extra relief, add aloe vera into this mixture. (Bonus: lavender essential oil used on dogs can help reduce anxiety. The quality of the essential oil is important though, so get natural, therapeutic-grade oils, especially if you have cats in the house).
- Rose Water*: Misting yourself with chilled rose water will provide great relief, make you feel royal and make you smell wonderful. Win, win, win. Be sure to get authentic rose water, rather than synthetic.
- Cucumber*: Cucumber is the vegetable of the summer. It is refreshing to eat, to add to water (with lemon), and also helps sooth sunburns. The best way to do this is to first blend the cucumber, then apply it directly to your skin. Some people will shred it instead. This is also great for burned eyelids.
- Chamomile Tea: Applying cooled tea or tea bags (after steeping) to the skin can help with inflammation and sting from sunburns. Using the tea bags can be especially useful if you burned your eyelids. For easy application, dip a sponge in the tea, then use the sponge to spread over the burn.
- White Vinegar: Chill and spray, voilà! White vinegar contains similar healing properties to aspirin, making it effective at relieving sunburn symptoms. It’s also a great household cleaner! Diluted white vinegar might be OK to apply to your dog’s skin, but they shouldn’t ingest too much of it. They also might be really offended by the smell.