We all know we should use sun screen lotion in the summer, but sometimes things don't go quite as they should. Maybe it was a cloudy day when you sat outside in a sleeveless top and didn't notice your skin turning colour; or the hours you spent on a shady terrace when you weren't aware the sun's rays were reflecting off the walls and parasols; or the day that turned out sunny after all and you couldn't be bothered to go back for your sun cream but stripped off anyway... Now, if you're lucky, your skin's only a coppery pink, or have you gone the whole way through to lobster?
Clearly, the best thing is to avoid getting burnt in the first place – regular sunburn may produce serious consequences for your skin in the long term – but what's done is done, and what you need right now is a solution for the itching and the tenderness.
If the sunburn is serious, with cracking and eruption of the skin, or accompanied by severe heat exhaustion or sunstroke symptoms – headache, sweating, delerium, rapid pulse and breathing – you should seek medical assistance. In the case of light to moderate sunburn, though, – up to a grade one burn – there are simple steps you can take to alleviate the problem. The aim is to find a treatment that will repair the skin and help it regenerate, as well as calming the irritation and itching and relieving discomfort and the feeling of numbness.