Most people experience a bad sunburn several times in their lives despite covering up or wearing sunscreen. It can be difficult to calculate a safe amount of sun exposure, as enjoying the outdoors on a nice hot day increases our mood. But it can take only a few hours of sun exposure before we return inside to realize our mistake. The skin becomes red and inflamed and feels as if it’s on fire.
It’s important to treat a sunburn quickly, before it can cause further damage to the skin. But before reaching for that cheap grocery store brand of skin lotion or doing nothing at all, consider the benefits of coconut oil to encourage your bad sunburn to heal faster.
How is Coconut Oil Made?
Coconut oil is sourced from the coconut fruits of the coconut tree. Strangely enough, coconuts can be considered fruit, seeds, or a nut, and its interior white substance is called the meat of the coconut. Both the white meat, coconut milk, and the oil sourced from the coconut are considered to be edible. It’s only the exterior hard shell that is discarded.
Coconut oil has a high saturated fat content and is slow to turn rancid. An unopened coconut can last for up to six months without turning bad.
Coconut oil is made from the copra, or the dried internal coconut kernel. It is heat pressed to extract the oil. The oil is not yet ready for consumption, so it must go through a refinery, bleach and deodorization process. Refined coconut oil has no taste or aroma.
Virgin coconut oil, and organic coconut oil have that distinctive coconut flavour and smell that is appetizing to most people. There is also RBD coconut oil that is processed further to withstand high cooking temperatures. Even though the oil is saturated, there have been some studies done that suggest this is a healthier saturated fat than eating animal-based fats, for instance.
Fractionated coconut oil is often used for medical or cosmetic applications.
When choosing coconut oil to soothe a bad sunburn, choose virgin or organic coconut oil that is meant for cooking. This is the safest coconut oil to use for your skin remedies, and can be used for multiple purposes in meal preparation and healthcare.
Why is Sunburn so Alarming?
If you experience a greater amount of sunlight, your skin will naturally darken over time. Most people find a suntan attractive, particularly while on a beach vacation, but the real reason for a suntan is due to your body’s defence mechanism kicking in. The defence mechanism produces a pigment called melanin, which is why your skin darkens after spending time in the sun.
But if you subject your skin to too much sunlight, you’ll get a sunburn. This is due to your body’s skin mechanism becoming too overwhelmed, so a toxic reaction occurs. This is also the body’s way of telling you to get out of the sun.
A sunburn is never good. It not only causes red, inflamed skin, but it can make the skin extremely sensitive to touch. Even wearing a camisole top or t-shirt may be too painful. Taking a shower can be excruciating.
People who experience repeated sunburns can actually get skin cancer over time. It’s important to always apply sunscreen, and wear a hat, light jacket, or use a sun umbrella if you’re going to be on the beach, patio, balcony, or outdoors for longer than one hour.
Sunburn can also cause minor issues, such as blisters, dead skin peeling off in strips, scarring, and excessive skin dryness that can lead to lines and wrinkles.
Anyone who has a sunburn wants to get rid of it as quickly as possible. The redness takes second place to finding a way to rid the skin of that terrible pain and discomfort. A bottle of your average skin lotion is simply not going to do anything to soothe your skin.
For this reason, applying a thin layer of coconut oil several times a day to sunburned skin can actually help to soothe your burn, and to help it heal much faster.
Why Coconut Oil is the Best Choice in Healing the Skin
Coconut oil—virgin or organic—contains only one ingredient: coconut oil. There are no additives, fragrances, colours, or chemical fillers that are going to irritate your sunburn even further.
Coconut oil serves multiple purposes in soothing a sunburn.
- Its natural organic compounds—such as lauric acid and other fatty acids—can actually decrease inflammation and redness, and speed up healing.
- There are no unpleasant side effects such as if you took an oral pain killer.
- The oil can soothe the pain that a sunburn causes.
- Coconut oil will help to prevent dead skin from peeling off in strips.
- The oil can prevent dryness that can cause itching, providing a natural moisturizer to the skin.
- It can prevent scarring or wrinkles.
- Coconut oil also contains vitamin D, E, and other nutrients that the skin naturally requires.
- Coconut oil has small chain fatty acids so it’s more easily absorbed into the skin.
- Coconut oil contains natural fungal and anti-bacterial properties to help your skin from getting an infection.
- Coconut oil has a pleasant smell so you won’t mind applying it several times a day.
How You Can Use Coconut Oil to Heal Sunburn
It’s fairly simply to use coconut oil to heal up your bad sunburn. Follow these steps to quickly experience relief.
- It’s best to leave your sunburn to heal naturally for one day. You can begin your coconut oil treatment the very next day.
- Try and wash your sunburn off with cool water. You want to ensure you get all sunscreen and contaminants off your skin first. Cool or cold water can also stop that burning sensation. If it’s really bad, you may wish to apply ice cubes covered in a cloth first.
- Gently pat skin dry.
- Apply a small amount of coconut oil to your fingertips. It will melt a bit as it warms up. Don’t worry about using too much, as you can always pat it off with a cloth after.
- Gently massage the oil onto your sunburn.
- Massage the oil in as well as you can and leave it overnight.
- Shower normally the next day.
- Reapply coconut oil at least three times a day until your sunburn has healed up.
- You may wish to continue using the coconut oil on a daily basis if you have experienced any scarring, or uneven suntan lines on your skin.
- Look up other effective coconut oil remedies to solve all your skincare needs.
Ingredients for a Portable Sunburn Remedy
If you’re taking a trip somewhere you may not want to pack a big jar or container of coconut oil. You can transfer it to a smaller jar that you have repurposed from your kitchen, and even add some additional ingredients to make it a portable sunburn remedy.
Collect together the following ingredients to make a special soothing sunburn remedy for when you’re on vacation, at work, or just on the go.
- 1/8 cup of coconut oil.
- 1/8 teaspoon of vitamin E oil.
- Few drops of lavender oil.
- Small bowl and spoon.
- Small jar with twist cap.
Easy Coconut Oil Sunburn Remedy Recipe
This is a really simply sunburn remedy recipe to make in your kitchen. Just follow these steps and soon you’ll have a soothing cream to take on the plane or keep in your bag or purse.
- Place the coconut oil in the bowl first.
- Mash up the oil. It may be solid at first, so you want to smooth out the lumps.
- Add the vitamin E oil.
- Mix up thoroughly. You’ll find the oil is easier to stir now.
- Add in your drops of lavender oil.
- Mix thoroughly.
- Spoon the oil into a small jar or container that has a twist lid.
- You may wish to choose a small jar that conforms to airlines’ carry-on regulations.
- Clean up.
- Use your soothing coconut oil remedy.
- Store the jar away from heat or sunlight.
How to Use Your Coconut Oil Sunburn Remedy
It’s simple to use your coconut oil sunburn remedy. Simply place some oil on your fingertips and rub it into the patches of sunburn on your skin. Massage it in until it’s absorbed by your skin. Leave it to dry for a few minutes. You may wish to wear 100% cotton while your skin is healing, as the oil may show up on polyester or silk types of clothing.
You can use this remedy on nearly every portion of your body. Avoid the regions around your eyes, or placing directly in your ears. Don’t forget that your scalp can also get burned too, so check along your hair part lines too. You may wish to apply a lighter amount of coconut oil here.
Other Skin Conditions Coconut Oil Can Improve
Coconut oil can also be effective to use on minor scrapes and cuts, and even on certain inflammatory skin conditions, such as eczema or psoriasis. You can even use it on fungal infections. Coconut oil can be used to treat dry cuticles, and dry cracked feet. You may also use a light application as a simply skin treatment oil at bedtime. Coconut oil also makes a great dry hair treatment, and can be used instead of hair gels to help style your hair.
A jar of coconut oil can be kept in the bathroom as part of your first aid kit, and is a lot more affordable than having ten different skin lotions and creams in the medicine cabinet.
Where to Find Coconut Oil
It could be perplexing to find coconut oil if you have never purchased it before. It can be found at any type of grocery store or supermarket in the cooking oils section. You may also find it at health and vitamin supplement shops. If you don’t have time, you can even purchase it from online stores that sell natural health care products.
Precautions or Warnings When Using Coconut Oil on Skin
Keep these precautions and warnings in mind if you plan on using coconut oil to help soothe a sunburn or other skin condition.
- Unless it’s a small cut or wound you want to avoid rubbing coconut onto a bad sunburn that involves cracked or bleeding skin. Seek medical assistance for extremely bad sunburns, as they can become infected.
- People can be allergic to anything, including natural products. If you get hives on your skin, discontinue usage. If you think it could be caused by an additional ingredient you added, such as lavender or vitamin E, try applying plain coconut oil to your skin instead.
- Use a high-quality coconut oil. One container is going to last you for a very long time, so it will be worth it.
- Let your sunburn heal naturally for one day. Begin application of your healing coconut oil treatments the next day.
- Remember to drink plenty of water as your body can become dehydrated from being out in the hot sun, and it needs water to assist your body’s healing process.
- If you don’t see any improvement in your sunburn, visit the doctor.
Add Coconut Oil to Your Shopping Cart Now
Coconut oil is a great all-purpose skincare oil, but it also contains natural compounds that can speed up the healing of sore, itchy, and dry skin, including what occurs with bad sunburns. You can begin your treatment the day after a sunburn. But even if it’s been a few days and you’re seeking some way of counteracting the itch and peeling that may be happening, go ahead and buy your coconut oil now, as it’s never too late to treat a troublesome sunburn.
You’ll find that coconut oil is a great all-around remedy for a variety of skin conditions. Purchase one container just for your bathroom cabinet and your skin will always look its best.