Reader Question: How do I quickly heal a sunburn?


Hey Jamie,

I know this is soooo awful but I got the WORST sunburn last weekend and I feel awful/look awful and was wondering if there’s anything I can do to help speed up the healing process?



Hi D!

First off, I want to start by showing this insane image of Kim Kardashian West.


Don’t let this happen to you. Ever. I don’t know what or how bad your burn is but pleasssse be more careful next time because just 1-2 severe sunburns can increases your risk of skin cancer by 40%.

Oh, and I actually just wrote this story about finding the right SPF for your skin type/tone so that might be helpful too.

Now let’s talk recovery…

Cool down your burn

When it first happens/you realize how burned you are (sometimes it takes some time), use a gentle cooling product like aloe vera to soothe the burn.

A few favorites:

Avoid your anti-aging/scrubbing routine

If your burn is on your face you’ll want to avoid using products with active ingredients like salicylic acid, retinol, alpha hydroxy acids, etc. Stick with a basic cleanser for sensitive skin or, even better, I’d recommend using makeup removing wipes since you can control how much pressure you use.

A few favorites:

Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate…

After the hot feeling goes away you should keep your skin moisturized at ALL times. I actually got a burn on my chest when I was in Australia in March (don’t judge- it’s south of the equator!) and immediately used Lucas’ Papaw Ointment on my burn. It definitely clogged my pores a bit BUT it kept my burn super hydrated and I had minimal peeling.  You want to use a petroleum-based product (like Papaw) since it’s super thick and won’t absorb immediately into your skin like regular moisturizer.

A few favorites:

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IMAGE (of model)

IMAGE (of Kim)

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