HomeHealthHealth Conditions

Serious Sunburn: Relieving Blisters and Burns


1st Jan 2015 Health Conditions

Serious Sunburn: Relieving Blisters and Burns

When your skin blisters in the sun, unfortunately you are seriously sunburnt. Of course prevention and staying safe in the sun is always our first recommendation, but if you are blistering there are a few steps you should take to soothe, relieve and stay safe.

Sunburn is a First Degree Burn

Since sunburn is a first-degree burn, anything that cools the skin will help to relieve the pain – from a wet T-shirt to a cold linen cloth soaked in saline solution and placed on the burn. To make the solution, dissolve 1 teaspoon of salt in 2 litres of distilled water. Be aware that sunburn can occur even on overcast days, especially at high altitude.


Believe it or not blisters are there to help! Blisters are raised areas of skin or mucous membranes under which fluids have accumulated. They serve to protect underlying tissue and reduce discomfort and the risk of infection. Never burst them!!! 

If a blister bursts, expose it to the air in hygienic surroundings. Dress it if there's a risk of dirt getting in. See a doctor if it becomes inflamed, or if you suddenly develop widespread blisters, which suggest an underlying disease.

Always seek medical attention for severe (with blistering) or extensive sunburn.

Experts say that even one blistering burn can double the risk of developing melanoma, an often lethal form of skin cancer. The key is being aware of the changes in your skin and stay aware of the dangers of sun damage.

Minor Redness

For more minor redness (without blistering), try one or more of the following fast-relief measures:

• Take a cool (not cold) shower, then apply pure aloe vera gel, which is instantly cooling.

• Soak a towel in strong, tepid tea and apply as a compress. Alternatively, aromatherapists suggest a compress dampened by water with a few drops of lavender oil added.

Prevention is better than the Cure!

Slather on the sunscreen, and be sure you get a nice, even coat. Apply it again after you swim or sweat. But don't rely on sunscreen alone. Keep your shoulders covered and wear a hat with a big brim. You may not look like the models in swimsuit catalogs, but you will avoid a painful sunburn and have healthier skin for life. Find more prevention tips here.

If you are struggling to keeping sunburn cool at night, you might want to consider these cooling bed pads.

This post contains affiliate links, so we may earn a small commission when you make a purchase through links on our site at no additional cost to you. Read our disclaimer

Loading up next...