FAN MAIL FRIDAYS: Scaly, Sunburned Skin Remedies
Happy Friday, everybody! I'm so excited for The Big Mascara Face Off tomorrow! Will definitely document that and muse about it in my blog soon. For now, let's help out our sister here, Jennika, in her big skin problem:
I just got back from a beach trip last week and my shoulders developed two extremely painful and large red patches-I thought it was normal because it's just sunburn, but after a week, my shoulders became scaly, cracked, and they're peeling incessantly! I applied a mentholated cooling lotion to it and it burned like crazy and now, the sunburned parts are still red and the surrounding areas are starting to produce scary white dead skin layers. Every night, I run ice cubes over these areas, although it only minimizes the pain and it doesn't improve the condition. It's so ugly that I can't wear my favorite halter tops for two weeks now. HALP!
Oh my! So sorry to hear about your tanning-gone-wrong experience. This is definitely my most hated part of any beach experience: SUN DAMAGE! What you're experiencing right now is moderate sun damage, but if you don't know how to address it properly, it may develop into a very serious one. (Hello hyperpigmented shoulders, irritation, and skin wounds!)
First thing you did wrong was you applied a mentholated cooling lotion. Yes, cooling lotion is the first step to taming any painful sunburn, but cooling lotion with menthol is a no-no because menthol will just sting your sensitized skin!
While the ice cube technique you're doing is right, it won't do any difference because your extremely dry skin's roughened and toughened texture will just repel water. You will need to stick religiously with a targeted skin regimen for a while until those scaly, sunburned parts disappear.
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COOL DOWN AFTER ANY SUN EXPOSURE
Obviously, you're way past this step already, but to those who are yet to go to the beach, you'll be needing an After Sun Cooling product to calm overexposed skin. Choose something with Aloe Vera extract as it will help your skin retain any moisture that's left until it replenishes its water content again. Personally, I like using Gel- based cooling skin products because it's primarily water- based, hence milder. Actually, Jennika, you can use it as a post- remedy when your sunburned skin feels painful and itchy.
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TAKE A COOL SHOWER
After sun exposure or while you're suffering from sunburned skin, opt for cool showers as cold water helps deal with the itch and softens the flaky areas.
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OATMEAL IS THE ANSWER!
Oatmeal is a colloidal ingredient, meaning it will form a moisturizing, protective film on top of any dry skin, hence minimizing the itch and preventing it from cracking further.
Exfoliate twice to thrice a week to naturally surface dead skin that's clinging closely to fresh skin. Go for a scrub with an emollient base to soothe any redness and pain that may arise during scrubbing.
You may also use Cure's ultra gentle water- based exfoliant.
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SHEA...MAY BE THE FACE I CAN'T FORGET...
Shea Butter is nature's best humectant and good thing Shea Butter- infused products are quite easy to find. Moisturize the sunburned parts with Shea Butter every morning and night to help skin regenerate.
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USE YOUR COCONUT
However, most Shea Butter products are pricey so the cheapest alternative is Coconut Oil. Coconut Oil is hydrating and has a lot of nutrients that will help repair damaged skin.
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Before going to school or work, slather sunblock on those affected parts to prevent further UVB damage, specifically darkening.
You would be needing some support from within, so don't forget to chug down your daily water intake. Taking in H20 will support the cellular healing process of your skin.
TIME TO GET EVEN
When your skin has completely healed and you got dark patches, find a lightening lotion with natural melanin- fighting ingredients such as Vitamin B3. NEVER-I repeat-NEVER opt for whitening lotions with acid substances. You wouldn't want to destroy all your hard work, do you?
Photo Credits: thebodydetoxclinic.co.uk
FINALLY, NEVER, EVER PEEL YOUR SKIN!
When you feel the need to peel the white, dead, protruding skin layers on the sunburned parts, pop in your headphones and listen to All Saints' 'Never Ever' song to remind yourself that you should never, ever peel those dead skin layers. Those skin layers are a sign that your skin is on its way to healing already, but it's not completely healed yet. When you peel it, the fresh skin underneath gets exposed, thereby its natural healing process is disrupted. Needless to say, it might take your skin forever to heal.
That's all! Hope this guide will work for you, Jennika. When you've finally tried all these common remedies and nothing has worked, it's time to visit the doctor. :)
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