(who wishes to be known as something much more macho...and so I've chosen Mr. Cornbread, but not the sweet kind) and I packed up the kids and headed to the local water park for his company's summer picnic. On the way there, I gave the children copious amounts of sunscreen and pointed out all the missed spots.
When we arrived, I quickly slapped some sunscreen on my arms but by then the kids had already turned into rabid animals and were pulling me in several different directions, shouting about slides and lazy rivers and magical sprinkling firetrucks.
So...I didn't put sunscreen on my chest, shoulders, face, or back. We were there from 10am until about 4pm and the whole time, my skin was roasting like a buttered chicken on the grill. I should also point out that I am a freckled, extremely fair-skinned individual. Luckily, the sunburn isn't too severe (no blisters, etc.) but it still hurts!
In fact, sleep last night would have been almost impossible if I hadn't been completely exhausted. I purchased some pure aloe vera gel, and have been rubbing that (gently) into my skin every few hours. In honor of my stupidity, I'm posting some natural sunburn remedies that you may or may not find helpful if you ever forget the sunscreen. Let me know if you've tried any of these, or if you know of a remedy that's better than the ones I've posted!
Milk - Most of the sites I found recommended milk, as it's great for any kind of burn. I imagine that the cold temp of the milk would also feel really good against the skin, and help let the heat out of the burn. Most places recommend soaking clean gauze in milk and then draping that across the burn.
Vinegar? - Seriously. To me, this sounds very hurty, but I don't know. I'm too chicken to try it. Have any of you tried vinegar for a sunburn?
Aloe Vera - My treatment of choice, since that's what I grew up using. You can use either the pure aloe vera gel (purchased from any drugstore) or actually break a piece of the plant and squeeze out the juice. I used the gel, which I bought for about $5. It's very cooling, and is supposed to help the burn heal faster.
Vitamin E - Squeeze the gel right out of the caplets and spread that on your skin, or purchase a cooling lotion with lots of vitamin E in it. Since this is the ultimate skin vitamin, I can see how this would work.
Tea Bath - Create a tea bath by running some warm water in the tub (not too hot, as that will probably really hurt!) and use tons of teabags. I have those huge gallon-sized tea bags that I bought at Sam's, but regular teabags will work too. You just need a lot. Throw those suckers in the tub and let them steep for a few minutes before getting in. Tea has a lot of great antioxidants and will soothe your skin.
In addition to these remedies, most people recommended taking some ibuprofen to relieve the pain. AND...loose clothing! In fact, I found the biggest, thinnest shirt I could find and have been using that! So...here's to a speed skin recovery, and don't forget to share your thoughts.