While everyone deserves a joyful day in the sun, prolonged exposure without proper sunscreen can leave you with a sunburn that lasts anywhere from three to five days. More severe sun damage can leave you in agony for even up to ten days. Luckily, there are several natural remedies known to help alleviate and treat sunburn symptoms and many can be found in your pantry.

Aloe Vera

One of the more obvious remedies for a sunburn, the cooling properties in Aloe Vera gel are a big draw for those feeling discomfort from too much sun exposure. Additionally, this miracle gel is known to speed up your skin’s healing process while moisturizing at the same time. There is not much this gel cannot do.


When finely ground and mixed with tepid bath water, oatmeal can pack a powerful punch in soothing your skin as an anti-inflammatory. You can buy pre-ground oatmeal in most grocery stores or pulverize a cup of plain oatmeal in a blender or food processor.

Cold Compresses

Applying a cold compress to your burnt skin can not only draw away the heat, but also restore the health of peeling skin and reduce any inflammation from blistering. While you can make a cold compress out of just about anything you can freeze, be sure to wrap it in a towel before placing it onto affected areas. Placing a cold compress directly on sun damaged skin can lead to frostbite and potentially make matters worse.

Cider Vinegar 

Acetic acid in vinegar alleviates pain, itching and inflammation. Pour one cup of white cider vinegar into tepid bath water and soak.

Coriander Oil 

Studies suggest rubbing this essential oil onto sunburned skin may reduce inflammation.

Manuka Honey

This natural humectant draws moisture to the skin and has incredible burn and healing properties. As sunburns can inflame the skin, the honey’s antibacterial and anti-inflammatory components provide relief from pain.

If you find yourself sustaining even worse symptoms from your day in the sun such as nausea, fever, chills, and confusion, seek out immediate medical care, as you might be suffering from sun poisoning. While no one should have to endure such torment for enjoying a great day in the sun, it is important to use sun protection and keep remedies like this on hand, just in case.


Dr. Suneil Jain, NMD, practices at Rejuvena Health & Aesthetics.