We’re serious about sun protection, but sunburns happen. Whether we’re in the pool a little too long without re-applying or treasure hunting at a flea market without covering up, a little overexposure can happen to the best of us. Ayurvedic expert and author, Sahara Rose, is sharing Ayurvedic solutions to common summer woes. Check out her holistic approach to managing summer allergies here. Below, she breaks breaks down a few natural sunburn fixes inspired by ancient wisdom…
You laugh, you play and you’re outside all day! You wake up in the morning, hot, sweaty and burning. Sunburns can almost make you feel like you’re sick because, though they look like they’re just affecting the surface of the skin, your body is in overdrive to repair all this damage.
Ayurveda can help! Ayurveda is an ancient science of the mind-body that enlightens us toward balance and longevity. There are several mind-body types, referred to as doshas, which allows us to treat each type uniquely. Here are 3 major ways to soothe a sunburn.
If your skin is badly burned and hot to touch, then it would be good to wait a few hours before putting oil on the skin and using a cold compress to bring down the heat, then use the oil below once it’s cooled down to your body’s temperature. Studies have shown that applying oil to a first-degree burn may speed up healing time and reduce dryness. In ayurveda, oil application is called abyangha and not only nourishes and heals the skin, but is meant to nourish the soul as well! ‘Oil’ in Sanskrit (ayurveda’s ancient language) can be translated into sneha, which means ‘love.’ So as you’re preparing to oil up a nasty sunburn, keep the mind centered in love, and you’ll accelerate your healing tenfold!
Each dosha requires a little something different, so when choosing a healing oil for the summer look to the following:
Vata should steer toward a nourishing castor oil; it is antibacterial and a little heavy, which will add some grounding to airy vatas.
Pitta will need anti-inflammatory most, due to being mostly fire. Coconut oil is an excellent choice for its cooling, antibacterial and antifungal properties. According to studies,
Kapha should gravitate towards something light that keeps the blood moving. Neem oil is a great choice; it stimulates the blood flow to bring nourishment to the skin.
Hydrate From the Inside
You may notice being extra thirsty during a sunburn. This isn’t just because you feel hot. Your internal body is working overtime to heal the skin and needs extra hydration to do so! Each dosha should eat and drink what’s right for them during the summer season.
Vata is the driest of all the doshas and will need a little extra ‘umph’ of hydration beyond just water. Aloe juice, honeydew melon and cucumber are super quenching ways to get electrolytes, vitamins and minerals to stay hydrated, not just throughout a sunburn, but all summer long.
Pitta, again, is fiery and will want to hydrate and cool down. Coconut water, celery and watermelon are go-to picks all summer season.
Kapha is the wateriest of the doshas, but will still require adequate hydration. To avoid adding in too many sweets, kapha types should reach for a high-quality low-sugar lemonade, some romaine lettuce and green apples.
Cool ACV Bath
Taking a cool water bath will benefit all body types with a sunburn. Adding in about a cup of high quality apple cider vinegar (ACV) will take the bath from good to great! I mean, who really wants just a cold bath? The ACV is anti-bacterial, anti-microbial, anti-fungal, anti-anything bad! These properties will help the skin heal and relieve itchiness as the sunburn begins to peel off.
A few other remedies all body types can use to alleviate a sunburn are aloe vera gel, brahmi oil and turmeric-infused oils. Some oils you find will be infused with healing herbs such as turmeric, which will significantly bring down all inflammation and irritation.
Keep your chin up and don’t let a sunburn ruin any part of your summer. Knowing a few tips and tricks for your body type is just one of the many ways ayurveda can help you snap back into joy!
This homemade mask is another one of our fave ways to soothe a sunburn.