The sun shines down on the best outdoor excursions and summer vacations. But sometimes you get too much of a good thing and come home looking like a disgruntled lobster that narrowly survived a cooking. You’re uncomfortable, you’re in pain, and you need sunburn relief. Did you know essential oils can be part of the solution?
Essential oils are packed with therapeutic properties that can intervene to calm sunburnt skin. Here are the top four secret EO remedies for a (subclinical) case of sun poisoning:
#1 — Basil Oil
Basil isn’t just a great ingredient in Italian cuisine; the flowering annuals essential oils have long been used medicinally, beginning in traditional cultures. That’s how we know basil oil is an effective skin-soothing agent in case of sunburn.
The basil plant makes an aromatic, vitamin-rich oil with antiseptic, analgesic, and ibuprofen-like anti-inflammatory effects, all of which help draw down a sunburn. This mild oil is usually well-tolerated and safe for sensitive skin types.
#2 — Peppermint Oil
Peppermint is a classic sunburn pain solution thanks to its numbing menthol. Peppermint essential oil can quickly tame the sting of a harsh burn and reduce some of that awful redness. However, a word of caution: Peppermint is a potent substance. Use peppermint oil very sparingly, or consider spearmint oil as a less-allergenic alternative.
#3 — Lavender Oil
Lavender is widely recommended for sunburn. It’s anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant and antiseptic, making it a catalyst for healing that additionally wards off infection. Lavender can also ease pain. Some people like it in combination with peppermint oil for an analgesic salve.
Scientists have studied lavender and found that it can reduce swelling or “edema” of the skin, like you see with a sunburn. (Apply only to intact sunburn blisters in small or diluted doses.) Lavender also stimulates blood circulation, which can help minimize scarring and post-blister pain.
#4 — Sandalwood Oil
Sandalwood is a unique, time-tested sunburn killer. Like lavender, it’s a cooling anti-inflammatory and directly aids the body’s natural healing process. The essential oil of sandalwood is extracted from the inner pith of tropical Santalum trees in places like India and Australia. It has a long history in Ayurvedic tradition. One ancient Ayurvedic recipe prescribes a blend of sandalwood oil with turmeric paste for sunburns.
Interestingly, sandalwood has also been studied as a cancer-fighting agent and some research suggests it may help prevent skin cancers before they develop. That’s good news for the recently roasted, since sunburns can be carcinogenic.
#5 — Chamomile Oil
Chamomile oil is a mild plant essence with a long history of dermal soothing, and it’s still used today for a host of unpleasant skin conditions, including sunburn. Chamomile anti-inflammatory powers promote speedy healing and can relieve the itch that sometimes comes with a burn. Some people favor chamomile as an alternative to lavender.
Hint: Most essential oils should be mixed in with a ‘carrier’ substance for topical uses, such as aloe vera gel or coconut oil. Visit our pure path store for all your essential oil and carrier oil needs.
About The Author:
Trysh Sutton is a wife, mother, attorney, interior decorator, strategic leader and owner of Pure Path Essential Oils. She has an eye for business, innovation and perfection – and a desire to help her family, her friends and herself live a healthy and happy life.