How Does Oatmeal Soothe Sunburns

by Sharon Hopkins

Trips to the beach can be fun, but you need to keep an eye out for sunburns, bug bites and even jellyfish stings ruining your otherwise perfect day. If you forgot to slather on some sunscreen before leaving the house or went out in the harsh sun and got burned, don't worry. There are some simple solutions that can be used with everyday ingredients from your kitchen like oatmeal, baking soda, vinegar and honey.


Sunburns occur due to overexposure to ultraviolet radiation; these UV rays are harmful for the skin. It should be noted that overexposure is not only through natural sun light but also results from artificial tanning beds.


Symptoms of sunburn include an itchy skin in the affected area. The skin will also be hot to touch. You may also feel tired and fatigued. Severe symptoms include nausea and dizziness.

What can you Do?

One of the most successful home remedies is an oatmeal bath for mild sunburns. To prepare the oatmeal bath, mash the oatmeal first so that you can dissolve it in water. One cup of unflavoured oatmeal should be ground till it achieves a smooth consistency. Then add it to the bath water. Gently pat it all over the stinging skin, and rinse it off properly afterwards. You can also pick up readymade ground oatmeal powder at your drugstore. Research suggests that avenanthramides, which is an anti-inflammatory and antioxidant compound, found in oats, is the secret that helps in soothing sunburns and an itchy skin.

Other methods you can try to achieve sunburn relief involve the use of aloe vera gel, baking soda, vinegar like apple cider or white vinegar, cucumbers, tea, yogurt or milk, cornstarch, buttermilk, honey, and egg whites. It is also important to stay hydrated. If sunburns are severe, consult a doctor for proper medical treatment.

Prevention is Better than Cure

To avoid getting sunburnt, always make sure that you use a sunscreen lotion that protects you against both ultraviolet A and B rays and has a higher sun protection factor (SPF). There are certain things that you need to keep in mind, and these include:

  • Try not to stay out too long in the sun
  • If you must stay out in the sun or are headed to the beach, always carry a hat or shirt to protect your skin from the sun.
  • Always wear dark glasses to protect your eyes.
  • Stay hydrated at all times



Warning: The reader of this article should exercise all precautionary measures while following instructions on the home remedies from this article. Avoid using any of these products if you are allergic to it. The responsibility lies with the reader and not with the site or the writer.
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