We recently returned from a family vacation off-Maui. After several weeks away, we had lost most of our suntan! You know what that means when you get back to Maui! Yup – a sunburn!
On our first beach day back I burned horribly. The kids were wearing water shirts and were just fine. Too bad I am too vain to wear them too.
I know many tourists burn badly when they come to Maui. Maui is located at 20.7 degrees latitude, the sun is much more intense here than the US mainland and Canada. Particularly for the first few days of enjoying the wonderful Hawaiian sun, you need to make sure you heavily lather on that sunscreen (and renew it every hour or two). If you have rented a convertible (those Mustang convertibles are quite popular), BEWARE. That’s a sunburn waiting to happen right there!
A few sunburn remedies
I’ve polled some of my friends as to their best sunburn remedies. I would love to hear your favorites. Of course, the best thing would be to actually avoid the sunburn altogether. That is another topic.
Aloe Vera ~ I was surprised how many of my friends use aloe.
- pick an aloe leaf and apply the juice directly to the burn. Of course, you are traveling and will most likely not find an aloe plant you can pick.
- aloe gel – I asked, like the BananaBoat Aloe Gel? While one friend uses that approach (she keeps it in the fridge so it’s nice and cold), apparently there is an aloe gel you can get at a health food store (Whole Foods or maybe even Hawaiian Moons here in Kihei)
- aloe cream or ointment – check out Maui Vera at the ABC Store (or Amazon).
Coconut Oil ~ Coconut Oil seems to be really popular with locals – I’ve heard of people using it as hair conditioner, moisturizer, eye makeup remover etc. I’ve never tried it! One of my friends adds several drops of peppermint oil to hers (again, something you get at the health foods store).
Cool moist Towels ~ after you’ve burned, put cool moist towels on the burned areas to help pull the heat out of the skin.
Moisturize ~ we all know what happens after a sunburn… the peel! Moisturizing helps minimize the peeling skin. Ideally use a thick unscented moisturizer like Cetaphil.
Stay out of the sun ~ I know, you’re on vacation, but do give your skin a chance to recover.
Have you ever had an itchy sunburn?
This happened to me – about 48 hours after the sunburn it got incredibly itchy. I admit to self-diagnosing rather than checking with a doctor, but according to this website, it may be ‘Hell’s Itch’. Ouch.
Advil ~ this has been my best friend this week, I do confess.
Vitamin A&D Cream ~ one of the online forums mentioned this. I picked some up at Target, it’s a petroleum jelly and is quite soothing on my sunburn.
From a landlord’s perspective (yes, I wear that hat too)…. please don’t apply ointments and creams and then lay down on the sheets or sit on the couch…. they do stain and ruin the sheets.
Do you have a favorite sunburn remedy? Please share it! A special thank you to my friends who contributed ideas for this blog post.