8 Best Essential Oils For Sunburn (2024): A Dermatologist’s Recommendations

Soothe your sunburnt skin and reverse the impacts with these affordable products.

Medically reviewed by Dr. Schwarzburg, MD Dr. Schwarzburg Dr. SchwarzburgMD insta_icon
Written by , MA (Journalism & Mass Communication) Kirtana Divakar MA (Journalism & Mass Communication) linkedin_icon Experience: 3 years
Edited by , Integrated MA Medha Deb Integrated MA linkedin_icon Experience: 5 years
Fact-checked by , MA (Journalism & Mass Communication) Monomita Chakraborty MA (Journalism & Mass Communication) linkedin_icon Experience: 4 years
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We all love getting a gorgeous golden tan on our skin when we take a trip down to the beach. In that excitement, we forget to put on sunscreen, and lo and behold – a blistering sunburn! If you want to go for a natural remedy or alternative, the only way to get those burns to go away is to apply some of the best essential oils for sunburn. They contain high levels of anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties that help in the treatment of sunburn.

To soothe those painful, red burns on your skin, mix the essential oil with soothing agents like aloe vera, oatmeal, or coconut oil to give your skin the much-needed hydration. However, if you have sensitive skin, experts recommend applying the diluted oil to a small area of your skin first to make sure you don’t have any adverse reaction to it. Take a look at our list of some of the top essential oils out there for treating sunburn. Scroll down!

Top Picks
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Best Non-Toxic:Majestic Pure Cosmeceuticals Fractionated Coconut Oil
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Best Antimicrobial:UpNature Lavender 100% Pure And Natural Essential Oil
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Best Cruelty-Free:Maple Holistics Lavender Essential Oil
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Best Relief Spray For Sunburn: Desert Essence Tea Tree Oil Relief Spray
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Best For Acne Breakouts:Plant Therapy 100% Pure Essential Oils - Carrot Seed
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Best For Soothing Inflammation:Sonoma Lavender Essential Oil
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Best Moisturizing:SenseLAB Helichrysum Essential Oil
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Best Certified-Organic:Plant Therapy Organic Frankincense Serrata Essential Oil
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Top 8 Essential Oils That Help Combat Sunburn

1. Best Non-Toxic:Majestic Pure Cosmeceuticals Fractionated Coconut Oil

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4.6
Majestic Pure Cosmeceuticals Fractionated Coconut Oil Image: Majestic Pure

Though coconut oil is known primarily for the benefits it provides for your hair, not many know that it is equally beneficial to treat sunburned skin along with other symptoms of sunburn. As coconut oil is high in saturated fats, it can help soothe your dry and itchy skin by replenishing your skin’s moisture. The unfiltered and non-toxic oil leaves no greasy residue on your skin and is easy to wash away from clothes and sheets. This fractionated oil can be blended with carrier oils for massages and aromatherapy sessions. This results-driven essential oil for sunburn relief is one of the best natural sunburn remedies as it works great as a moisturizer, eye makeup remover, and in shaving creams. Coconut oil also has antimicrobial properties, killing bacteria and fungi. So, investing in an oil with multiple benefits for skin and hair can be a great decision. You may check more about this product in this video.

Product Dimensions: 2.72 x 10.04 x 4.61 inches | Weight: 1 Pounds

Pros

  • Easy absorption
  • Non-toxic and no additives
  • Moisturizes body
  • Suitable for all skin types
  • Non-greasy
  • Long shelf life

Cons

  • May not be suitable for use during pregnancy

Our Tester's Experience

"I love this for my dry, flakey skin. With daily use in the shower, my skin feels baby-smooth, especially when paired with moisturizer. The lightweight, non-greasy texture is great. It's a pretty decent product."


worth-buy-icon

Why We Think It's Worth Buying

There are more than 29,356 Amazon reviews attesting to the quality of the product and endorsing its value.

2. Best Antimicrobial:UpNature Lavender 100% Pure And Natural Essential Oil

We understand the frustration that you can have due to sunburned skin. The itch, heat, and painful sting can get really unbearable. That’s why we have found this pure and natural essential oil for sunburn itch for you. antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory and contains antioxidant properties that can do wonders for your skin. It also heals dry skin, minor cuts, and scrapes quickly. This therapeutic-grade oil can treat acne breakouts and promote healthy skin and hair. You can relieve your stress and anxiety with this relaxing essential oil as it helps improve your sleep too. Just blend and apply 10 drops of this lavender oil with a carrier oil and get immediate relief from sunburn. Do a patch test before using the oil topically.

Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 3.6 x 2.2 inches | Weight: 9.14 Ounces

Pros

  • Unfiltered and undiluted
  • Free of toxins and additives
  • GMO and cruelty-free
  • GC-MS tested for quality
  • Soothes dry, itchy skin
  • Anti-anxiety
  • Treats acne
  • Eases joint pain

Cons

  • Some may find the scent overwhelming.
protip_icon Caution
If you apply scented oil, ensure the recipient can withstand the smell, or it may worsen sunburns and lead to contact dermatitis, similar to a combo of sunburn and chemical burn. Any essential oils may be irritating when used on opened skin and cause an allergic reaction.

3. Best Cruelty-Free:Maple Holistics Lavender Essential Oil

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4.5
Maple Holistics Pure Lavender Essential Oil Image: Maple Holistics

Take time off work and chores and chill out by giving yourself a massage session as this lavender oil calms your skin. This 100% pure, cruelty-free, and vegan oil is a great calming sunburn remedy that also promotes clear and healthy skin with its anti-aging properties. Steam distilled from flowers, it has a rich fresh floral scent which makes it a perfect addition to your aromatherapy. The sunburn relief oil uplifts the mood and improves sleep by relieving anxiety. The oil also boosts the health of both hair and skin. Adding this soothing oil to your skincare regimen is worth it as it heals your skin and adds natural glow to it.

Item Weight: 0.16 ounces | Product Dimensions: ‎ 3.94 x 2.8 x 1.93 inches

Pros

  • 100% pure oil
  • Cruelty-free and vegan
  • Has soothing effects
  • Adds glow to skin
  • Treats dry scalp
  • Has anti-aging properties

Cons

  • Some may find the scent very faint.
protip_icon Quick Tip
Soak in a bathtub with 8-10 drops of lavender and oatmeal to relieve sunburn. Make sure the affected areas are submerged. Repeat daily until the burn is gone.
worth-buy-icon

Why We Think It's Worth Buying

With over 11,504 reviews, this product has become a fan favorite among users.

Majestic Pure Cosmeceuticals Fractionated Coconut Oil
Best Non-Toxic
UpNature Lavender 100% Pure And Natural Essential Oil
Best Antimicrobial
Maple Holistics Lavender Essential Oil
Best Cruelty-Free
Dimensions 2.72 x 10.04 x 4.61 inches 6.1 x 3.6 x 2.2 inches ‎ 3.94 x 2.8 x 1.93 inches
Weight 1 Pounds 9.14 Ounces-
Weight-- 0.16 ounces
Rating
Reviews29,35615,71611,504
Price$18.99$16.99$9.95

4. Best Relief Spray For Sunburn: Desert Essence Tea Tree Oil Relief Spray

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4.4
Desert Essence Tea Tree Oil Relief Spray Image: Desert Essence

The Desert Essence Tea Tree Oil Relief Spray is sourced from family plantations in Australia. It soothes minor scrapes, burns, bug bites, skin breakouts, and sunburn. It is meant to nourish, rejuvenate, and promote skin cell regeneration. It is infused with a powerful combination of rosemary oil, balm mint extract, chamomile, and horsetail to soothe the skin from sunburn. It has a convenient spray applicator that is ideal for hard-to-reach areas.

Product Dimensions: 1.6 x 1.6 x 5.9 inches | Weight: 1.8 Pounds

Pros

  • Soothes skin
  • No artificial color
  • Vegan
  • Gluten-free
  • Cruelty-free
  • B-Corp Certified
  • Chemical-free
  • Paraben free

Cons

  • Strong fragrance

Our Tester's Experience

"I discovered this product during a trip and it's been useful in keeping mosquito bites at bay. Its pleasant smell persists for a long time and is surprisingly effective in relieving sunburn sting. My daughter's foot infection benefited from the tea tree spray, which also eased her pain. A versatile product indeed."


5.Best For Acne Breakouts:Plant Therapy 100% Pure Essential Oils – Carrot Seed

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4.2

Consequences of a sunburn can be detrimental and hence, it only makes more sense to prevent it. This unadulterated essential oil can be used to blend with other oils and create your own natural sunscreen. Its anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and antibacterial properties promote healthy skin by treating dull, tired, and blemished skin while improving your complexion. It moisturizes and rejuvenates your skin by fighting against acne, and hyperpigmentation. You can also apply it on your abdomen to get relief from digestive issues.

Product Dimensions: 1.25 x 1.25 x 3.35 inches | Weight: 0.03 Ounces

Pros

  • Non-GMO
  • Cruelty-free
  • Treats acne breakouts
  • Minimizes signs of aging
  • Helps fight hyperpigmentation
  • Acts as a natural sunscreen
  • Soothes dry, dull, and blemished skin

Cons

  • Some may find the fragrance unpleasant.

Our Tester's Experience

"Despite its poor blending properties, I mix it with my lotion to get some relief after mild sun exposure. Its scent bears a resemblance to ylang-ylang. Overall, a good product."


protip_icon Did You Know?
Carrot seed oil and tea tree can protect, improve, and repair the skin affected by pollution. They also support the growth of new skin cells, leading to a clearer, brighter complexion. Carrot seed oil also has a high SPF of 35-40, making it an effective sunscreen.

6. Best For Soothing Inflammation:Sonoma Lavender Essential Oil

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4.6
Sonoma Lavender Essential Oil Image: Sonoma Lavender

Here’s your secret to repairing and rejuvenating your sunburned skin back to good skin health. The queen of essential oils, which is lavender essential oil, helps with sunburns and soothes inflammation, insect bites, and bee stings. This lavender oil for sunburns balances out moisture levels and promotes a healthy skin by relieving anxiety, easing headaches, and inducing better sleep. It can help disinfect wounds and fade scars. This oil can be easily blended with other carrier oils, creams, lotions, or foot balms for renewed and rejuvenated skin.

Pros

  • Soothes inflammation
  • Reduces scarring
  • Promotes wound healing
  • Reduces anxiety and stress
  • Induces better sleep
  • Relieves headaches

Cons

  • Some may find it slightly expensive.

Our Tester's Experience

"This Sonoma Lavender oil has become a staple in my routine. It's effective on my eczema and a few drops on the dryer enhance my laundry's scent. The calming fragrance also adds a relaxing touch to my reiki sessions. Even though the size seems small, a little goes a long way. Highly recommended!"


7. Best Moisturizing:SenseLAB Helichrysum Essential Oil

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4.4
SenseLAB Helichrysum Essential Oil Image: Sense Lab

This soothing essential oil for sunburn is worth getting hooked on for its countless skincare benefits. It has multiple therapeutic benefits that help the skin recover from sunburn and protect it from any damage, signs of aging, acne, and bruising. In addition, it moisturizes the skin, softens it, revealing healthy, glowing skin. The oil also aids great benefits when used for aromatherapy and massages. The rich and sweet fragrance of the oil provides therapeutic benefits as well.

Pros

  • Therapeutic benefits
  • Moisturizes the skin
  • Reduces exhaustion
  • Great for aromatherapy
  • Pleasant fragrance

Cons

  • The scent might not be long-lasting.

Our Tester's Experience

"I've been on a quest for the perfect clove aroma and found that this product delivers a truly unmatched scent. My mildly arthritic thumb found relief with its therapeutic qualities. It performs splendidly in a diffuser, though applying it can be challenging."


8. Best Certified-Organic:Plant Therapy Organic Frankincense Serrata Essential Oil

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4.6

Walk free with no worries when you step out in the sun. This essential oil is great for sunburn care remedies as it is gentle to use and is very effective in treating mild sunburn, acne breakouts, and insect bites. This 100% pure and certified organic oil has undergone third-party laboratory testing and has anti-inflammatory properties and a woody and earthy fragrance. It helps calm and soothe inflamed skin and also the body and mind by uplifting your mood. This frankincense oil can be experimented with to make a topical to treat nagging skin and for pain-relieving effects. It can also be blended with some carrier oils to soothe and heal your skin. Watch out for some DIY recipes you can try with this oil and enjoy its numerous benefits.

Product Dimensions: 1.25 x 1.25 x 3.35 inches | Weight: 0.96 Ounces

Pros

  • 100% certified pure
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Easy to use
  • Gentle on skin
  • Controls acne breakouts

Cons

  • The scent may not last long enough.

Our Tester's Experience

"I'm genuinely smitten by this versatile oil. Its scent instantly uplifts my mood and has become a family favorite. The Frankincense essential oil is a staple in my household - from diffusing and adding to my face moisturizer to soothing post-workout soreness when mixed with coconut oil. A testament to Plant Therapy's consistent quality and authentic fragrance, it's dependable and delightful."


*The prices provided in this article are based on the latest available information. However, they may vary due to changes in pricing by the seller and/or promotional offers.

We understand that our list of best oils with plenty of options might have overwhelmed you. Fret not as we’re here to help you further with the factors you need to keep in mind to pick the best one for your skin.

How To Choose Best Essential Oils For Sunburn

  • Free of vegetable oil

Ensure that the essential oil you pick is not adulterated with vegetable oils. You can check it with the help of a simple process. Put a few drops of the oil on a piece of paper and if it forms an oily ring, it is most likely to have been diluted with vegetable oil.

  • Packaging

Always buy an essential oil that comes in an amber or dark cobalt blue glass bottle as it protects the aromatic and therapeutic properties of the oil. If stored in transparent bottles, it can allow light to enter and spoil the oil. It is also not safe to store essential oil in plastic bottles as it can dissolve the plastic and get contaminated.

  • Extra ingredients

You can also buy essential oils that come with extra ingredients for topical use. It would be wise to look for essential oils with ingredients like avocado oil, vitamin E, and vitamin C as they help repair and heal damaged skin due to mild to moderate sunburn and they are key antioxidants.

Now that you know how to choose the best essential oil, here’s the right way to use it.

How To Use Essential Oils For Sunburn

  • Ensure to not apply it directly to sunburned skin without diluting it as essential oils generally have a strong fragrance and are quite potent.
  • It should be diluted with a carrier oil like coconut or a soothing aloe vera gel to make it less potent. It is therefore less likely to lead to irritated skin.
  • Just mix a few drops of essential oil with an unscented lotion, carrier oil, gel or ointment, and apply it to the skin. The usual recipe for concoction should be 3 to 5 drops of essential oil to 1 ounce of carrier oil.
  • Schwarzburg, MD, an expert in cosmetic dermatology, advises, “Always do a patch test before using a product to avoid allergic reactions or any minor skin irritation.”

But before you use it, ensure that you are not sensitive to its scents. Here’s why.

Are There Any Side Effects Of Essential Oils?

A few might experience certain side effects of these oils, particularly for sensitive skin. Ensure that you pick a scented essential oil only if you can tolerate the fragrance. If you cannot tolerate the scent, your skin may experience irritation, and in rare cases even dermatitis which means further damage to sunburned skin with something like chemical burn. Avoid using essential oil if you have first-degree burns from the sun. Experts also suggest not to apply it on the area that is extremely red and painful as it can aggravate your skin irritation and may cause some allergic reactions. It is recommended that you try testing it on the back of your hand or ear for skin tolerability before you use it.

The Bottom Line

The importance of good sunscreen has been discussed widely. Avoiding sunscreens can cause extreme sunburns leading to other skin issues like redness and flaky skin. The best essential oils for relief from sunburns contain antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties that heal sunburns and hydrate the skin. The versatile Majestic Pure Fractionated Coconut Oil replenishes the skin’s moisture, the UpNature Lavender Essential Oil delivers a relaxing and soothing effect, and the Plant Therapy Organic Frankincense Serrata Essential Oil which gently relieves sunburns while uplifting your moods. These oils are non-toxic, cruelty-free, and easily absorbed into the skin. However, some products may not be suitable for sensitive skin and pregnant mothers. Go through the buying guide to pick an essential oil that suits your skin type and has secured the most positive reviews. Always do a patch test to avoid any complications.

Frequently Asked Questions

Who should not use essential oils?

Senior citizens and young children may be more sensitive to essential oils and hence, it is advised to dilute the oils more and avoid some oils, like birch and wintergreen. These may cause some serious problems in children who are 6 years old or younger due to the presence of a chemical called methyl salicylate.

Does coconut oil help sunburn?

Yes, it can. Coconut oil can help moisturize your sunburned skin and reduce itching and peeling. But ensure you apply it only after your skin has cooled. Also, use only expeller-pressed organic, virgin coconut oil for your skin.

Does a hot shower help with sunburn?

No. A hot shower can strip the natural oils off the skin. The water should be cool to lukewarm to help with your sunburned skin.

Can you put peppermint essential oil on sunburn?

Yes, peppermint sunburn oil contains the cooling agent, menthol, which helps treat sunburns.

Does tea tree oil help with sunburn?

Yes, tea tree oil soothes the sunburnt area and relieves pain. However, use a diluted form of tea tree oil if you have sensitive skin.

Can you use lavender oil on sunburn?

Yes, lavender oil has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that treat sunburn.

Why does apple cider vinegar help sunburn?

Apple cider vinegar is a natural astringent. It treats sunburn, soothes the affected area, and quickens healing.

What makes sunburn worse?

Further exposure to harmful UV rays worsens sunburns.

Why Trust StyleCraze?

The author of this article, Kirtana Divakar, is a skin care enthusiast. Her keen interest in various skin care trends and products helps her recommend the best products to her readers so that they can choose easily. She has curated the list of the best essential oils for sunburn after in-depth research and reading many feedbacks on trusted forums. These oils are loaded with antioxidants, have anti-inflammatory properties to help manage sunburn effectively.

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Dr. Schwarzburg is a leading authority in the field of minimally invasive cosmetic and laser medicine in New York City. He is an Ivy League school graduate with 7 years of experience in cosmetic dermatology and regenerative medicine.

Read full bio of Dr. Schwarzburg