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How to Soothe (and Prevent) a Sunburn Before Your Wedding

Because no one wants to look red, crispy and tan-lined at the altar.
Sophie Ross
by Sophie Ross

Want to look as glowy and gorgeous as possible on your wedding day? That shouldn't come at the expense of healthy skin. You already know you should be applying (and reapplying sunscreen) whenever your skin is exposed to the sun—but everyone makes mistakes. If you end up with a nasty sunburn in the weeks prior to your wedding, you might feel short of options—especially if you're wearing something like a strapless wedding dress.

But good news: We have just what you need to remedy red skin and unsightly tan lines below, just in case you accidentally fell asleep on the beach before reapplying (it happens to the best of us). So if you love to lay out, take notes.

1. Prevent

Even if you think your "skin doesn't burn," you should always, always, always slather on some sort of SPF before laying out to prevent harmful UV rays from penetrating your skin. (Seriously—ditch the baby oil.) You should also wear sunscreen under your makeup as often as possible. Lots of beauty brands make sunscreen specifically designed for your face, so you don't have to worry about breakouts—some of our favorites include brands ISDIN, Mad Hippie, Arbonne and Tatcha.

2. Soothe

If you notice your skin becoming inflamed immediately after laying out, reach for a bottle of aloe vera in its natural gel form (aloe vera lotion doesn't have the same effect, since it's more diluted). Slather it on liberally after you shower, and keep reapplying hourly until you notice results. It's the most tried-and-true way to soothe burnt skin.

But if that doesn't work, you have some other options. Goat's milk lotion is an amazing alternative—like aloe vera, it contains special antioxidants and proteins that reduce redness, inflammation and rashes. Plus, it works well with all skin types (even sensitive ones) since it's natural.

You can also bathe in things like apple cider vinegar (just add two cups of the stuff to your bath water) to get your pH levels back to normal, or tea (just soak several tea bags in a pitcher of hot water and apply with a washcloth) to repair the skin damage. Repeat until you see results.

3. Drink

Tea baths not your thing? Drinking tea rich in antioxidant catechins (like green or black tea) will also help soothe your burn. Generally speaking, your skin will need an extra boost of hydration to start repairing itself—expedite the process by drinking more water than usual, or grabbing a coconut water for some additional electrolytes. Ibuprofen will alleviate redness and inflammation as well (plus it'll reduce the pain you might be feeling from your burns—major bonus).

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