Sunburn Remedies to Soothe Red, Irritated Skin

Kim Kardashian sunburn

Forget the SPF, Kim K?
Photo: via Celebuzz

We know the consequences and yet, we never learn. Hanging out in the sun too long will result in dry, sensitive, and sometimes, sunburned skin. In search of relief, we asked top skincare experts for their go-to sunburn remedies.

NYC-based Plastic Surgeon Dr. Stafford Broumand told us what to apply to skin immediately after getting out of the sun.The skin will be dehydrated and parched, so hydrating with B5-Serum will help restore that moisture loss.” He recommends Dermaquest Advanced B5 Serum ($69, which contains sodium hyaluronate that holds 1000 times its molecular weight in hydration.

Dr. Elizabeth Tanzi, Co-director of the Washington Institute of Dermatologic Laser Surgery in Washington D.C. recommends pure aloe vera gel. “[It’s] an exceptional après-sun soother because it cools on contact and has anti-inflammatory properties to speed healing.” And here’s a little trick from Dr. Broumand. “Try storing aloe vera gel in the refrigerator and applying it after the sun to help cool the skin.” Avoid those neon green gels — many contain alcohol and other ingredients that can irritate skin — and look for an aloe that’s as close to 100 percent pure as possible (or snap a stalk off an actual aloe plant).

“If you have a sunburn, use a lotion with 1 percent hydrocortisone to help soothe sore, itchy skin and I would also recommend taking an over the counter pain reliever,” says Dr. Broumand. We recommend Aveeno 1% Hydrocortisone Anti-Itch Cream ($5.60, with built-in aloe and vitamin E.

Skin dry and/or peeling after a few days? “My favorite formulas contain hyaluronic acid and ceramides to help balance the hydration levels of the skin,” says Dr. Tanzi. She recommends CeraVe Moisturizing Lotion ($11, which contains both. Another hyaluronic acid favorite: Joanna Vargas Daily Serum ($85, Packed with antioxidants and skin-brightening elements, it hydrates and rejuvenates skin for an instant pick-me-up. Celebrity Facialist Joanna Vargas offers a DIY trick: raw apple cider vinegar. “It makes the skin cells renew faster.”

Read more: 5 Big Mistakes You’re Making With Your Sunscreen