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How To Get Rid Of Sunburn Blisters

How To Get Rid Of Sunburn Blisters May 8, 2018

Who doesn’t like spending a lazy afternoon at the beach! As fun as that sounds, the soaring temperature might have other plans for you. Sunburns, scalding skin, and blisters – you see your dream turning into a nightmare. And if you have a light complexion (which also means lesser melanin), your risk of getting sunburned is even higher. This is exactly where this post comes into action. Whether you are looking for natural treatment options or prevention tips for sunburn blisters, we have everything that can offer help. Scroll down.

Table Of Contents

What Are Sunburn Blisters?

When your skin is exposed to extreme temperatures, it can lead to extremely painful sunburns. Sunburn blisters appear several hours or a day after the initial exposure to the sun. Although the pain associated with sunburn blisters may subside in about 48 hours, they may take up to a week to fade. And the spots left behind may take longer to fade completely, say 6 to 12 months.

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What Causes Sunburn Blisters?

Sunburn blisters, as the name suggests, are caused due to overexposure to the sun rays. If you have suffered a first-degree sunburn, it only affects the top layer of your skin and causes it to redden and become tender. It might even cause light peeling of your skin within 24 to 48 hours.
However, second-degree sunburns cause damage deeper in the skin. They cause blisters and may take longer to heal.
We will now look at the common signs and symptoms of sunburn blisters.

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Signs And Symptoms Of Sunburn Blisters

Sunburn blisters are usually small, white, and fluid-filled bumps that appear on the skin. The skin surrounding these blisters is usually red and swollen. They are often painful to touch and can be extremely itchy.

In some cases, nausea, fever, vomiting, and headaches are observed.

Given that the main cause of sunburn blisters is overexposure to the sun, the first thing you must do is to avoid going out in the sun. But, if you have still managed to get sunburns, the home remedies given below will be of great help in healing and soothing the blisters naturally.

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12 Best Home Remedies To Treat Sunburn Blisters

  1. Essential Oils
  2. Coconut Oil
  3. Aloe Vera
  4. Oatmeal Bath
  5. Turmeric
  6. Tea Bags
  7. Baking Soda
  8. Apple Cider Vinegar
  9. Cucumber
  10. Saltwater
  11. Potato Peel
  12. Tomato

How To Treat Sunburn Blisters Naturally

1. Essential Oils

a. Lavender Oil

Lavender Oil Pinit

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You Will Need
  • 12-15 drops of lavender oil
  • 1/2 cup of water
  • Cotton balls
What You Have To Do
  1. Add 12 to 15 drops of lavender oil to half a cup of water.
  2. Soak a cotton ball in this solution and apply it to the affected areas.
  3. You can also mix a few drops of lavender oil with coconut oil and apply it to the affected areas.
How Often You Should Do This

Do this once daily as soon as you notice sunburns or blisters.

Why This Works

Lavender essential oil possesses anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties that can help in the faster healing of sunburn blisters (1). It can also help increase the blood circulation, thus reducing the extent of scars and pain that follow blistering (2).

b. Tea Tree Oil

Tea Tree Oil Pinit

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You Will Need
  • 6 drops of tea tree oil
  • 15 mL of coconut oil (or any other carrier oil)
What You Have To Do
  1. Add six drops of tea tree oil to 15 mL of any carrier oil and mix well.
  2. Apply this mixture to the blistered areas and allow it to dry.
How Often You Should Do This

You can reapply this mixture 2 to 3 times daily.

Why This Works

Tea tree oil, with its powerful antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties, can work wonders in healing sunburn blisters (3). It not only helps rejuvenate dehydrated skin but also cools your skin with its soothing properties (4).

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2. Coconut Oil

Coconut Oil Pinit

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You Will Need

100% virgin coconut oil (as required)

What You Have To Do
  1. Take a cool shower or use a cold compress to cool the affected area.
  2. Apply some coconut oil to the affected area.
How Often You Should Do This

You must do this 1 to 2 times daily.

Why This Works

Coconut oil exhibits burn wound healing properties (5). It also has anti-inflammatory and soothing properties that help reduce the pain, inflammation, and itchiness in the affected area (6).

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3. Aloe Vera

 Aloe Vera Pinit

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You Will Need

Aloe vera gel (as required)

What You Have To Do
  1. Scrape some aloe vera gel from the plant and apply it to the affected areas.
  2. Allow it to dry.
  3. Reapply as required.
How Often You Should Do This

Do this 2 to 3 times daily.

Why This Works

Aloe vera gel is quite popular for its soothing and healing properties, which help heal sunburn blisters (7). In fact, a study published in Phytomedicine concluded that aloe vera-based creams had exceptional effects on first, second, as well as third-degree burns (8).

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4. Oatmeal Bath

Oatmeal Bath Pinit

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You Will Need
  • 2 cups of powdered oatmeal
  • Bathwater
What You Have To Do
  1. Add two cups of powdered oatmeal to your bathwater and soak in it for 20 to 30 minutes.
  2. Alternatively, you can also wrap a cup of ground oatmeal in a muslin cloth and replace your loofah with it.
How Often You Should Do This

You must do this on a daily basis.

Why This Works

Oatmeal is another remedy that works wonders for blistered and sunburned skin. It possesses anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties that can speed up the healing of your skin and reduce the pain and inflammation to a certain extent (9), (10).

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5. Turmeric

Turmeric Pinit

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You Will Need
  • 2 tablespoons of powdered turmeric
  • Water (as required)
What You Have To Do
  1. Mix two tablespoons of powdered turmeric with enough water to form a thick paste.
  2. Apply the paste to the blisters.
  3. Leave it on for 15 to 20 minutes, after which you can wash it off with water.
How Often You Should Do This

You must do this once daily.

Why This Works

Turmeric is an age-old remedy for many skin issues. It contains curcumin, which has anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and analgesic properties that can help in soothing and healing blistered and sunburned skin (11), (12).

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6. Tea Bags

Tea Bags Pinit

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You Will Need

2-3 used green tea bags

What You Have To Do
  1. After you are done brewing your green tea, keep the used tea bags aside.
  2. Refrigerate the tea bags for an hour and place them on the affected areas.
  3. Leave them on until they dry.
  4. You can reuse the tea bags a couple of times by wetting them again.
How Often You Should Do This

You must do this 1 to 2 times daily.

Why This Works

Tea bags are a quick fix to heal blisters. Green tea is packed with antioxidants and also contains polyphenols, tannins, and epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG) that have anti-inflammatory properties (13). They not only speed up the healing of sunburn blisters but also reduce the redness and repair skin damage (14), (15).

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7. Baking Soda

Baking Soda Pinit

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You Will Need
  • 1 teaspoon of baking soda
  • 1 glass of water
  • Cotton balls
What You Have To Do
  1. Add a teaspoon of baking soda to a glass of water and mix well.
  2. Soak a cotton ball in this solution and apply it to the affected areas.
  3. Allow it to be absorbed by your skin.
  4. Alternatively, you can add one-fourth cup of baking soda to your bathwater and soak in it for 20 to 30 minutes.
How Often You Should Do This

Do this once daily.

Why This Works

The alkaline and anti-inflammatory properties of baking soda help reduce the inflammation and itchiness (16). Its natural antiseptic properties help prevent infection in the affected area (17).

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8. Apple Cider Vinegar

 Apple Cider Vinegar Pinit

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You Will Need
  • 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup of cold water
  • Cotton balls
What You Have To Do
  1. Add a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar to a cup of cold water and mix well.
  2. Dip a cotton ball into this solution and apply it to the affected areas.
  3. Allow the solution to dry, after which you can wash it off with water.
How Often You Should Do This

You must do this 1 to 2 times daily.

Why This Works

Apple cider vinegar is widely used for its antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory benefits. These help in reducing the inflammation and itchiness in the sunburned area and prevent further infection (18).

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9. Cucumber

Cucumber Pinit

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You Will Need

1 cucumber (sliced or minced)

What You Have To Do
  1. Take a cucumber and slice or mince it.
  2. Place the cucumber slices or apply the minced cucumber directly to the affected areas.
  3. Leave it on for 20 to 30 minutes.
  4. Wipe it away.
How Often You Should Do This

You must do this twice daily.

Why This Works

Cucumber is another remedy that is widely used for its cooling and soothing properties. It is a rich source of vitamin C, which is a bioflavonoid that can help reduce inflammation and itching (19).

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10. Saltwater

Saltwater Pinit

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You Will Need
  • 1 teaspoon of table salt
  • 1 cup of water
  • Cotton balls
What You Have To Do
  1. Add a teaspoon of table salt to a cup of water and mix well.
  2. Soak a cotton ball in the salt water and apply it to the affected areas.
  3. Allow it to dry.
How Often You Should Do This

You must do this 1 to 2 times daily.

Why This Works

Salt can speed up the healing of sunburn blisters because of its strong anti-inflammatory properties. Its antiseptic properties help protect the affected area from microbial infections (20).

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11. Potato Peel

Potato Peel Pinit

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You Will Need

Peels of 1 to 2 potatoes

What You Have To Do
  1. Peel one or two potatoes.
  2. Place the peels on the affected areas.
  3. Leave them on for 20 to 30 minutes, after which you can remove them and wash the area.
How Often You Should Do This

You can do this twice daily for best results.

Why This Works

Potatoes contain glycoalkaloids that possess excellent anti-inflammatory properties that reduce inflammation and pain and soothe sunburn blisters (21).

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12. Tomato

Tomato Pinit

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You Will Need
  • 1/4 cup of freshly extracted tomato juice
  • 1/2 cup of milk
  • Cotton balls
What You Have To Do
  1. Extract one-fourth cup of fresh tomato juice and mix it with half a cup of milk.
  2. Dip a cotton ball into this mixture and apply it to the affected areas.
  3. Leave it on for 20 to 30 minutes and then wash it off with water.
How Often You Should Do This

Do this once daily until you notice an improvement in your condition.

Why This Works

The topical application of tomato juice is a great option for treating sunburn blisters. The slightly acidic nature of tomato relieves the pain and itching, and its anti-inflammatory properties help in reducing the inflammation and redness in the affected area (22), (23).

The remedies listed above will surely offer relief and help you get rid of sunburn blisters. For faster recovery, the first thing you need to do is to avoid the sun at all times. But since this is not always possible, here are some tips that will help you prevent sunburn blisters.

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Prevention Tips

  • Try and steer clear of the sun, especially during mid-afternoon.
  • Use a sunscreen that has an SPF of 30 or above. Apply it every 2 hours when you are out in the sun.
  • Wear protective clothing, such as long-sleeved shirts and t-shirts, sunglasses, and wide-brim hats.
  • Apply sunscreen to all the exposed body parts.
  • Reapply the sunscreen after entering the water or excessive sweating, even if the product claims to be water-resistant.

Sunburn blisters usually occur only when a person is severely sunburned. Many complications and long-term side effects can arise due to overexposure to the sun. Some of them are described below.

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Possible Complications And Long-Term Side Effects Of Sunburn Blisters

The possible complications and long-term side effects that occur due to long-term overexposure to sun include:

  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Dehydration
  • Chills and fever
  • Dizziness
  • Appearance of precancerous spots (known as solar keratosis)
  • Premature aging of the skin
  • Increased risk of skin cancer

Do not allow the sun to get the better of you. Be smart, take the necessary precautions, and follow the home remedies to get rid of sunburn blisters.
Let us know which remedies helped you by commenting in the box below.

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Expert’s Answers For Readers’ Questions

How long do sunburn blisters last?

While the pain might subside in a day or two, the sunburn blisters might take up to a week to heal. And the spots left behind can take anywhere between 6 to 12 months to heal completely.

Should I pop sunburn blisters?

Do not pop your blisters as it can worsen the condition.

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