The sun’s warmth on the skin is delicious—especially after a long, cold winter. Yet too much unprotected time can result in sunburn caused by the sun’s ultraviolet rays.
Sunburn is skin deep, although its pain is far more! Unfortunately, it can have long-term effects too. These include changes in skin tone and quality, causing wrinkling. Exposure to the sun’s UVA and UVB rays is to the risk for skins cancers and immune system weakening.
Cutaneous melanoma increased by 81% in the U.S. alone between 1973 and 2003.
In this article we share our essential oil wisdom for sunburns.
Essential Oils For Sunburn
Fortunately, there are marvelous essential oils that offer aid and comfort for any sunburn. There are those that cool the skin, soothing your surface while calming your mind. Prompt use of essential oils can limit skin peeling after the burn diminishes.
Others provide gentle protection as damaged skin is more likely to suffer secondary issues such as irritations and potential infection. Some of the oils’ compounds are drawn to body lipids, such as the fats in your hypodermis. This supports staying power as oils aid your burnt skin.
The immune system can suffer when you have a sunburn. There are essential oils that aid with ridding toxins, and others happily offer you peaceful calm, limiting the stress you are experiencing. This contributes to a reduced risk of weakened immune system.
Here is a lovely assortment of essential oils that offer a variety of cooling, calming, and protective benefits. Included with each is a method that can be readily put to use to save your skin!
Best Essential Oils For Sunburns
1. Calendula Essential Oil (Calendula officinalis)
Calendula’s yellow and orange colors are literally more than petal deep! These colors are associated with the plant’s carotenoids that nourish your skin as they offer gentle pain relief.
Calendula aids sunburn relief in numerous ways. It assists the body in flushing toxins that are sunburn by-products. It soothes your skin as it stimulates renewed skin health at the granular level.
Calendula oil’s main compound is the sesquiterpene alpha-cadinol that is also found in some fruits, ginger, and cloves. This floral constituent offers protection for damaged skin.
Fill a bowl with tepid water and add a blend of 8 drops calendula oil and a teaspoon of honey. Immerse a soft towel or cloth in the water and wring thoroughly. Fold and place on a tender area. Leave in place 10-20 minutes.
2. Geranium Egypt Essential Oil (Pelargonium graveolens)
Geranium essential oil is highly valued for its balancing benefits for body and mind. The ester compounds in geranium contribute to its cooling and relaxing benefits. And its alcohols support cleansing, an important use when skin is sunburned.
Geranium moisturizers your fried skin as it calms your frazzled nerves, giving you hope that tomorrow will be a better day.
Add a blend of 2 to 3 drops of geranium and 1 teaspoon whole milk to a sink of cool water. Gently splash your face. Air dry if time and setting permit doing so. This allows the oils to sweetly settle into your pores.
3. Roman Chamomile Essential Oil (Anthemis nobilis)
This oil is considered a moon herb, as it is cooling. This tidbit of herbal lore clearly conveys Roman chamomile’s balancing benefits when having fun in the sun.
Roman chamomile is an essential oil that is regarded as one of the best for soothing inflammations, including those of your skin. It is cleansing and protective, and gently helps to reduce sunburn swelling as it offers a calming effect.
Create a calming diffuser for your bedside. Fill a small bowl with hot water, and add a few drops of Roman chamomile. Take slow, deep breaths for full calming effect.
4. Lavender Essential Oil (Lavandula angustifolia)
Lavender contains the monoterpene compound linalool. The oil shields your skin, something important to consider when it is damaged, as in the case of sunburn.
Lavender offers a soothing presence when your skin burns, making you feel tender all over. Lavender care for a sunburn brings gentle relief to your body’s largest organ and valiant protective layer. Its lovely aroma soothes you, reminding you that this too shall pass.
Lavender can be applied neat to tender spots. Place a couple of drops directly on those tender areas, offering you quick sunburn relief. Later in the day rinse the area clean and reapply.
5. Eucalyptus Essential Oil (Eucalyptus globulus)
Eucalyptus extends its soothing benefits when we are suffering from sunburn. This Australian tree can grow tall, reaching toward the sun that nurtures the oils that are prepared and sent to us in our hour of need. In the case of sunburns, we may have days of need!
Eucalyptus essential oil is infused with eucalyptol, a monoterpene compound associated with the plant’s clean, spice scent. Terpineol is an alcohol in eucalyptus that aids in skin protection.
The protection eucalyptus offers is promoted by quick skin absorption. This added plus is because eucalyptus is attracted to fats and lipids, thus coming to your aid without further ado!
Create a gentle eucalyptus moisturizer by combining 3 drops of eucalyptus with a tablespoon of plain, unscented moisturizer.
6. Tea Tree Essential Oil (Melaleuca alternifolia)
Tea tree oil is quite versatile as it provides cleansing and protective support, both being quite a relief for sunburn sufferers. It is uplifting and packed with active ingredients. This special oil’s monoterpene compounds stimulate your immune system, offering extra care when dealing with a sunburn.
Tea tree blends with lavender and eucalyptus, offering added comfort when you have overdone time in the sun.
One of tea tree oil’s benefits is the ability to be used neat. Simply apply a drop or two to a painful place on your sunburn, such as where clothing rubs, causing added duress. Gently massaging the oil as you apply stimulates its absorption into tender tissues.
Note: Although tea tree oil is considered skin-safe, use with caution if you have sensitive skin.
7. Peppermint Essential Oil (Mentha piperita)
Peppermint oil’s calming qualities soothe inflamed, burning-with-pain sun-scorched skin. This welcome calm offers relief from general discomfort that accompanies a widespread burn.
Peppermint has a cooling effect, a true gift for reducing the heat of burned, inflamed skin. Peppermint’s benefits are brought on by a ketone that relieves pain, and an ester that is soothing.
Its stimulating qualities helps to lift foggy brain brought on by dehydration that can accompany hours in the sun. Peppermint’s uplifting benefits path the way to clear thinking and a lightened mood.
Try a peppermint oil balm-the-burn spritzer to cool your skin: Fill a spray bottle with 50 ml of room temperature water—it will feel cool when sprayed over your skin – and 50 ml witch hazel. Add 10 drops of peppermint oil and mix well. Spritz patch by patch, allowing yourself to adjust to the cooling—doing it all at once might lead to a chill.
Sunburn Salvations: 4 Soothing Solutions
Alas, sometimes we pay the sunburnt price for fun in the sun! Please don’t let your sore and sensitive skin mess with the memory of a gorgeous day of play. Try using any of these solutions for saving your skin and sanity.
Chamomile Coconut Cooling Care For Kids!
This one is titled for kids and sure appeals to the kid in any of us. Think of where a coconut grows—in a tropical setting with breezes gently rustling a palm’s magnificent fans. That image alone evokes the cooling this soothing oil provides for little ones’ or your burnt skin.
This is for a 2% solution for children 3 years and older.
- 12 drops of chamomile
- 20 ml of coconut carrier oil
Blend these oils thoroughly. Apply with slow, gentle strokes, encouraging the oil’s absorption.
Note: For children with nut allergy/sensitivity, use calendula carrier oil instead of coconut oil.
Soothing Essential Oil Bath
- 3 drops eucalyptus
- 3 drops lavender
- 3 drops tea tree
- 2 tablespoons of honey
Blend the oils and honey well. Prepare your bath by drawing a tub of warm water and adding the oil blend. Swish to mix thoroughly. Soak for 20 minutes, replenishing water for warmth.
Gently rinse by pouring slowly over your skin. Drench a soft cloth with bath water and apply to areas that hurt the most. Being sunburned can cause one to feel weak or dizzy—please arise slowly from your bath for safety’s sake.
Calendula Garden Balm
This delightful blend is as colorful as it is uplifting in a calming sort of way! Imagine strolling along a path lined with potted geraniums and calendula. Each step takes you closer to a hillside of lavender in bloom.
- 120 ml calendula carrier oil
- 25 drops lavender
- 25 drops geranium
Blend the oils thoroughly. Gently rub this balm into your skin as you imagine each flower’s gift for you.
Aloe Vera Save-The-Day Blend
Let aloe vera blended with essential oils save you from sunburn
- 15 ml 100% aloe vera gel.
- 6 drops lavender
- 6 drops tea tree oil
Blend well and apply gently. Allow some time to dry. Notice how beautifully this blend seals your skin!
- You’ve had a grand day of outdoor adventure. You get home, look in the mirror and see why your skin is tingling…sunburn.
- Time to reach for your essential oils to quell the pain and soothe your skin. Maybe a blend will even help to limit all that peeling.
- Essential oils for sunburned skin care include calendula, geranium, Roman chamomile, lavender, eucalyptus, tea tree and peppermint.
- We also included some soothing recipes with these oils so you don’t have to have your beautiful memories tainted by sunburn and it’s lingering effects.