How to Treat a Sunburn Naturally

How to Treat a Sunburn Naturally

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It happens!

We can be so careful — protecting our skin and eating foods that build our resistance — but sometimes our fun in the sun leads to overexposure and we end up with a painful sunburn.

Yes prevention is the most effective cure for sunburn — but when it inevitably happens, use any number of these safe and effective homemade remedies to soothe and heal the burn:

Aloe Vera. When it comes to sunburns, most people reach for the Aloe Vera. It’s the most common natural remedy for burned skin and not to mention…a super easy to maintain house plant.

Lavender essential oil. This is my favorite remedy for burns. Lavender essential oils not only relieves sunburn, but they may also prevent peeling. Find high quality-grade lavender essential oils by clicking here…

Yogurt. Spread yogurt on your burned skin to help cool and heal. Your best bet is to use full-fat, plain, unsweetened yogurt. Let the yogurt stay on the skin until it warms then rinse off.

Vinegar. Load apple cider vinegar into a spray bottle, store in the fridge, then spray it on your burn. Is there anything vinegar can’t do 🙂

Tea. Make a pot of strong tea and then use a piece of cloth soaked in the tea by applying it to the sunburn area. You could also make a tea bath and soak in the tub. It’s actually the tannins in tea that help to soothe the burn and heal the skin.

Potato peels. An age old remedy for sunburns mentioned in tons of old writings is potato peels. They provide much needed moisture and they also have anti-bacterial properties that help in healing…who knew?

Cucumber. Try applying thin slices of cold cucumbers directly, or you could puree a peeled cucumber and rub it on to the affected skin.

Vitamin E. Apply vitamin E oil and plenty of moisturizer for several days after the initial sunburn. This is where I find vitamin E oil…

Burn Relief Spray. Combine 2 ounces aloe vera gel, 2 ounces cold water, ½ teaspoon vitamin E oil, 15 drops of each tea tree oil and lavender essential oils. Load into a small spray bottle and shake well prior to application. This spray can be applied to the entire burned area as often as needed. Store in the refrigerator for approximately 5-7 days.

What is your tried and true remedy for sunburn relief?


  1. Joao Anastacio says:

    For every type of burn you should first cool down the area placing the burnt area under cold water and then apply any treatment. My preferred is fresh eggwhite. The collagen will heal the damaged skin.

  2. Shirley says:

    I have been having luck with Tea Tree Oil soap for sun burns.

  3. Shannon says:

    I’ve been treating my recent burn with a mixture of coconut oil, fresh aloe, and apple cider vinegar. Seems to be working quite well and is made from things I had on hand.

  4. wow, what a great post!! Thanks!

  5. RacheL. H. says:

    I’m going camping/canoeing this weekend, of course there’s the possibility of getting burned… so I was glad to see this article in my email inbox. 🙂 Thanks for the tips. I’m drinking lots of green tea this week to work at prevention!

    • vitaman says:

      Astaxanthin, 2 to 10 mg before exposer is the best preventative I’ve ever tried. Also it will help repair sun damaged skin. Thanks for all the comments I love learning from others’ experiences.

    • Regarding green tea: much if not most green tea is grown in northeast Japan, in proximity to the ongoing Fukushima nuclear disaster. It is suspect for radionuclide contamination. Japan will not allow the sale in the country of any food containing more than 100 Bequerels (a measure of radiation)… but the US allows up to 1200 Bequerels and doesn’t specifically test anything from Japan, thanks to Hillary Clinton’s trade agreement with the country in April, 2011. In other words, you could be exposing yourself to internal radiation, the most dangerous kind, by drinking green tea. Learn more and how to make your voice heard on this issue with the FDA by going to: and clicking on #107. The interview will give you the full information. Stay safe!

      • The tea is produced upland of the fukushima disaster. Its not exposed through the groundwater unless the radiation grows legs. Don’t fearmonger.

  6. You read my mind! Just last night I said I needed to find something better to use for sunburns as I was slathering yucky commercial aloe vera gel on our shoulders after a fun day outside.Thank you!

  7. My family always used cooked oatmeal, after it has cooled of course. It is also great for poison oak and ivy.

  8. I remember my mother using apple cider vinegar for sunburns.

  9. Great post – the burn relief spray sounds awesome!

  10. Heather says:

    I love using lavender oil for any type of burn. Make sure it’s medical grade. Lavender (Lavandula Angustifolia). Pricier, but more effective for healing.

  11. I always use Aloe Vera, but I like having options…and I had no idea about the yogurt. Awesome! 🙂

  12. Tina M Comroe says:

    I use Milk of Magnesia on my worst sunburns. As I keep the bottle in a cool dark cupboard it is doubly soothing to my skin after overexposure.

  13. I like the aloe and vinegar. I just wrote a post last night that I was saying that these also work for bug bits. Wonderful post. I will be sharing your blog post on my blog today. I think that they work well together.

  14. Uh-Maz-ing!!! Thank you, thank you, thank you for being devoted to providing innovative and usable information…gracious living at its best…frugal AND fab!

  15. Coconut oil or Manuka honey! Both are great for healing your skin!

  16. Cool compresses of equal parts milk and water on affected areas. Drink plenty of fluids. Sunburns and other burns cause dehydration. Aspirin to relieve inflammation.

  17. Maria Orfan says:

    You left out Extra Virgin Olive Oil, (filtered won’t do.)

  18. I use my #70 or #100 sunscreen, but I still get burnt! So I’ve found that the best thing is vinegar for me. I also try to put some kind of lotion (right now I have a homemade coconut oil lotion) on it. But I spray it lots of times with vinegar before I put the lotion on.

  19. When I was a teenager way back when, my mom knit me a bikini. It was an inch and a half smaller than the one I usually wore and consequently an all day outing at Doheny ended with a very nasty sunburn but only where the inch and a half skin was exposed. I couldn’t where a bra (luckily it was summertime and no school) My mom slathered me with a product called Kip it had eucalyptus oil in it and it worked like a charm. I smelled like the eucalyptus trees outside but who cares as long as I got relief! I have found that vinegar kept in a spray bottle the fridge also works wonders.

  20. I find that 100% unrefined shea butter moisturizes deeply and keeps you from peeling! Also, it is a good sunscreen if you need light protection – naturally SPF 10.

  21. Just wanted to let you know that I featured this post in my “Weekend Pics – 6/8/12” post. Very good article offering excellent advice! Thank you!

  22. The best sunburn remedy I ever tried was something my mom found in a pharmacy in Tokyo, when I was suffering from the worst sunburn of my life after climbing Mt. Fuji. We tried everything and this was the only thing that worked. It was aloe with something camphory-smelling in it, but the package was labeled in Japanese, which none of use could read. I sure wish I knew exactly what the secret ingredient was.

  23. My mom always used washcloths soaked in vinegar for all my bad sunburns and it worked…I do know that. I was always amazed at how quickly the vinegar smell dissipated but being a teen and pre-teen, still felt I went out smelling like a big pickle…LOL


  24. güneş yanığına ilk olarak soğuk su sonra nemlendirici sürülür.. acı biraz hafifler 😉

  25. Jennifer Hetz says:

    I always use my homemade lavender oil, but never knew that’s why it worked. 🙂 I have a large lavender bush in my front garden and I make batches of infused oil with EVOO and cut dried lavender. I also use my homemade toner as a spray; it contains mint and parsley infusion, witchhazel, cider vinegar, and vegetable glycerin. I keep it in the fridge in the summer and feels so good when I’m hot and sticky from outside!

  26. I keep aloe vera juice in my fridge, in a spray bottle. whenever its hot and we have been outside, we spray it on when we come home. it feels great, and it prevents peeling. It’s also easy, all I have to do is pour my pure aloe juice in an old spray bottle. We also use it to spray scratches and scrapes that arent bad enough to need a bandaid, and it seems to make them heal faster.

  27. ROBERTA says:

    I have found the best to put on a bad sunburn is straight tea. Brew 4-6 teabags then cool before applying with cotton balls. The tannic acid is the magic ingredient…Apply several times before bedtime and when you wake up the discomfort will be gone.

  28. Good to know how to deal with the aheal a sunburn.. My skin is delicate and gets sun burned quickly….and you can more know about this solutions so plz visit to me.

  29. Desert Rose says:

    Egg Whites! While vacationing in Costa Rica my daughter burned badly despite the spf 8- sunscreen. When a Costrican lady saw her( and gasp,) she immediately came back with beaten egg white. She spread it on my daughters shoulders and we left it on about 1/2 hour. We repeated it the next morning. My daughter had no pain after this treatment and never blistered. It was truly amazing.

  30. Shane Keskeny says:

    Seriously? No one mentions ginger root? Well Iv used ginger root for sunburns and it works great . It really reduces the redness and pain… take it from a red head I know sunburns lol.

  31. I have used lavender essential oil and aloe vera and love them both. I’ve also used peppermint to help cool the burn and that works wonders as well!

  32. Christina says:

    I have started using Ozone Therapy Products for just about everything including sunburns, and I will never go back! Heres some relevant info:

  33. Kassim Waqo says:

    Much Greetings from Marsabit,Kenya!

    Good Advcie Indeed.Thanks Alot and God Bless.

    However;if any one is here to kindly help me continue with my education – I will be very grateful.Am serious.If you wanna help in any way.please get in-touch via my email:


    +254724 824 880

  34. you know…. i live on an island (Maldives)….. (pls dont think i m bad just because i m brown, v r born the way v r and shouldnt try 2 change it and i go 4 swiming, like, almost EVERYDAY…. and now u couldnt tell the difference between my hair and my skin….. thx 4 the tips 😉

  35. I BURNED MY NOSE AND MY IT LOOKS (and feels) LIKE A FREAKIN PEELIN STING!! AAAAAAAH!! NOT HELPING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 🙁 :0

  36. Thank Goodness its holidays!!

  37. madeline loves harry styles says:

    how long does it take for the tea to work its not working for me? please reply i need answers

  38. You have got to use PURE MEDICAL GRADE LAVENDER OIL, Not the stuff in every health food store, that stuff does not work. Pure lavender is not gonna be cheap, but will help the any burn immediately.
    I have heard stories where the victim did not even scare from a 2nd degree.
    Sure helps it feel better, that is for sure!

  39. Egg whites!!! They have been proven to heal even terrible 2nd/3rd degree burns…so…they work like magic on a little ‘ole sunburn… I’ve owned a resturant for years and you would be amazed at some of the burns my chef has treated with egg white…and they heal as if they never happened!!! This is a MUST try!

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