Forget to slip, slop, slap and wrap?
We shouldn’t need to remind you of the harsh and harmful effects of the sun’s ultra violet (UV) rays. But sometimes, be it a cloudy day, a near expiring bottle of sunscreen or just lack of preparation, we can underestimate just how powerful it can be, leaving us red-faced – quite literally – come sundown.
According to Health Navigator New Zealand, even mild sunburn can damage your skin and increase your risk of skin cancer. Not to mention New Zealand is home to the highest rates of skin cancer in the world. So yeah, it’s a very real problem.
How do you know if you’re sunburnt?
Well, it should be pretty obvious. Though, not always immediately. While some people might start to see redness on their skin appear as the day goes on, others might not show signs until it’s too late — a grower not a shower, if you will.
Signs of sunburn include red, hot, sore and/or tender skin that may eventuate into blistering or peeling from about four to seven days after exposure. Severe sunburn extends to feeling faint, feeling dehydrated or suffering from severe blistering. This is cause enough to see your doctor.
Photography: Olivia Renouf for Miss FQ Issue 3, 2018. Stylist: Georgia Donovan.
How to treat sunburn
You’ve done the easy part and gone and got yourself sunburnt. Now comes the hard part: cooling and relieving the onset of discomfort that will rain down on you for days.
Basic treatment involves applying a cold flannel over the area, drinking plenty of fluids (alcohol should be avoided), avoiding any further exposure and applying soothing after-sun lotions to keep the area moisturised.
There are plenty of lotions and potions out there to keep your skin hydrated, but when sunburn is involved, you’re going to want to pay closer attention to what’s on the ingredient list. Lotions that have large amounts of fragrance, alcohol or even oil can aggravate sensitive skin, so it’s best you give these a wide berth.
To simplify matters, we’ve rounded up some of the best after-sun products on the market below: