Well, let me tell a story before I go ahead and discuss the topic in hand. The temperatures in this part of the world cross 50 C in summers and this continues for say 2-3 months. We are used to this but not say a European, as they are not used to so much of sun.
In 2010, one of my friend from Europe decided to visit India, unfortunately it was extended summer that year and he was no way used to this kind of sun. He was worried of rashes and sunburn and asked me how can he survive this – I just told him two things – 1) start exposing yourself to sun 10-15 min daily 2) when you come here, just buy a bottle otf coconut oil and apply it before leaving your hotel. It worked! He did get some rashes but nowhere close to what you could happen to you in such high temperatures.
This story is for two things – 1) bust the myth that only expensive sunscreen lotions can work and save your skin 2) coconut oil is great to save you from sunburn. Let’s start on with the subject now.
Coconut oil for Sunburn
While it may sound very new to most of the readers, in tropical regions, coconut oil has been used as a suntan oil since long! It has been saving people of tropics from sunburns which get exposed to it so much. It was also part of suntan and sunburn oil in past, even today some brands have it as an ingredient.
Tips of using coconut oil for sunburn
According to various skin experts if you plan to get exposed to sun (say you are going for hiking, trekking, or to tropical regions) take care of the following:
- Start by exposing yourself to sun for short period of time to start. This is like 10-15 min. This is a very imp. step to get ones skin to get accustomed to sun. When you do this your skin starts producing protective chemical called melanin it helps in combating sunburn. In case you see excessive redness, cut back the time.
- When you expose yourself to sun, make sure to put coconut oil liberally over your exposed skin. Coconut oil is absorbed extremely fast through skin so don’t get worried about it. Also keep in mind that you do not put too much of coconut oil as it can spoil your clothes too (although coconut oil is non-staining there is still some chance)
- Another important part which is completely ignored while tackling sunburn by optimum diet. According to Coconut Cures by Bruce Fife, diet plays a very important part in sunburn control. He stresses that one should take a low polyunsaturated fat diet to avoid sunburn because these fats are prone to preoxidation. So along with applying coconut oil you should also make sure a proper diet regime is followed.
Simple tips to use coconut oil for skin care
It is not that one needs to use coconut oil only when you need to avoid sunburn. If you are regular user of coconut oil and take care of your diet you will not have to worry about sunburns anymore. Here are some tips:
- Apply coconut oil on your skin after bath, especially if you have used soap. This is important as soap washes away the naturally occurring protective layer over the skin. To regenerate that layer coconut oil provides fatty acids
- If you are going out in sun just apply small quality of coconut oil at exposed area. This will keep the area soft and protected
- Regular coconut oil massage also helps in rejuvenating your skin. You can also add herbs or other beneficial oils along with it.
- Apply coconut oil on cracked and dry skin. This will heal cracks and help in making skin soft
So, rather than thinking coconut oil for just sunburn use it as a comprehensive skin care oil which when applied regularly will help you keep a soft, smooth and healthy skin naturally and economically!