Sun on a beach vacation can be a double-edged sword. Too little sun and the beach becomes a lot less enjoyable. Too much sun, however, can burn you to a crisp and leave you wondering how the heck you’re going to have any fun on the rest of your trip. A bad sunburn doesn’t necessarily mean the end of your vacation though. Try these tips to soothe your burn quickly and get you back out on the beach:
—Know the danger. The sun’s rays are stronger in the tropics, thus elevating the risk of sunburn. Reflected light from sand and water also increases your risk, so be sure to take preventive actions, particularly if you go back out in the sun after getting sunburned.
—Hydrate. Sunburn can deplete your body’s water supply, so make sure to drink plenty of fluids (sans caffeine or alcohol) for the first few days after you get sunburned.
—Moisturize. Using aloe vera gel or a moisturizing cream can help your skin recover from sunburn more quickly.
—Wear loose clothing. If you’ve ever had a bad sunburn, you know that even the slight rubbing of clothes over your skin can be very painful. Wearing loose clothing will keep your skin protected from additional sun damage while minimizing your discomfort.
—Try an oatmeal bath. Some companies make specific oatmeal formulations meant to improve your skin, and they work great for sunburns. However, even just soaking in a bathtub of lukewarm water with some regular oatmeal thrown in will help your skin recover.
—Stick to mild soaps. Using a harsher soap, such as a scented soap, will expose your damaged skin to chemicals that could dry it out.
—Seek out a protected environment. You can still have a lot of fun on a beach vacation while keeping your skin under wraps. Snorkeling in a full-body wet suit will keep most of your skin protected. Some resorts even offer covered pools. In addition, certain destinations have natural swimming options that are shaded, like Mexico’s cenotes and caves.