It’s always nice to get a tan during summer, but no one enjoys getting a burn. Although you can get sunburned any time of year, it is especially likely in the hotter months. Despite my best efforts (I could still do better though,) I always find that I get burned a few times. Luckily for me, I am dark skinned which means the extra melanin in my skin allows me to stay in the sun 5-10 times longer than my lighter skinned friends.
Nonetheless, sometimes the sun is far stronger than melanin can absorb, which leads to a burn. Burns are dangerous because they increase the chances of skin cancer by far too much.
The nose, which sticks right out of the face- for some people more than others, is highly susceptible to getting burned by the sun.
That’s not all. The cancer foundation says the most likely place for skin cancer is the nose. Even worse, nose skin cancer is also one of the “most aggressive forms of skin cancer.” To finish off, treatment of skin cancer on the nose is extremely difficult due to its “complex anatomy.”
So, if you forget to protect any other part of your body, remember to protect your nose.
Tips for preventing your nose from getting sunburned
At least 30 SPF or higher for all skin tones, and at least 30 minutes before you expose your beautiful face to the harsh elements.
Opaque zinc oxide
Hardly a new phenomenon, but one made popular in the 80’s by a company named Zinka. Zinka, made with zinc oxide, made it so that every babe and stud had white noses on the beach. And it worked, Southern California experienced the lowest sunburned nose numbers reported anywhere.
Zinc oxide is still the main ingredient in sunscreen lotions, but it is because of its powerful sun protecting properties. The mineral scatters, reflects and absorbs harmful sun rays- both long wave (UVA) and short wave (UVB) rays. It is also shiny which is why most sun creams leave a bright sheen.
Yet sunscreen on its own does not offer nearly the same protection as a sprinkle of zinc oxide. For its capability, it is worth investing in, especially because they generally go for about $30 and last all summer.
So maybe its time for a Zinka comeback? Only less white this time around. Because it is blasted into tiny Nano particles, Zinc no longer needs to be a white paste on your face. The greasy shine however, is here to stay.
Wear a hat and sunglasses
I’m convinced that sunglasses fashion hit its peak with large glasses that can cover half your face. They may not help in any way with your nose, but they do protect your eyes, and perhaps half your face if you opt for the option. A hat however may be the simple solution you’ve been ignoring. While I personally love how they look, I’ve never enjoyed the sweaty, flattening effect they have on my hair.
I suppose the choice is sweat and look ridiculous for a second, or age quickly.
I guess I’m going shopping.
But I am already sunburned…
If you are reading this, it is probably too late for you to follow the above tips, but keep them in mind for the future.
In the meantime, however, walking around with a peeling nose is not exactly life goals, but for a while it is probably best to do so. covering it up is not only difficult, but it doesn’t allow your skin to breathe, and thus heal.
So just treat the burn, and prepare better next time.
How to treat a sunburned nose
Before you attempt to put on make-up over a sun burn, first you must treat it.
Clean the area
Because it is the nose, use a damp towel on the affected area. Avoid hot water and cold water as they can both affect the skin negatively immediately after a burn. Instead use cool water, a mild/gentle soap and a soft towel. Do not dry out the area completely but leave it a little damp to help it heal. Also avoid rubbing the area too much with the towel.
Moisturize the area
You want to avoid keeping the skin dry after a sunburn. Use a cold cream moisturizer because it will soothe the skin. Aloe Vera is also the most recommended product for a burn. Rub it on the area at least 3 times a day to quicken the healing process.
Apply oil afterwards to help keep the skin moisturized. vitamin E oil, jojoba oil and coconut oil are best.
Remember to put on another layer of sunscreen again to prevent further damage to the skin.
Although it may seem like a good idea to slather on Vaseline, the thickness of petroleum jelly traps the heat in the skin which thwarts the healing process. Also avoid lotions and creams with perfumes or other harsh properties as they may cause an allergic reaction.
For your skin to stay healthy and heal, it needs to be hydrated. Drinking plenty of water is necessary all the time, but especially after a burn. This is because your skin is damaged. 8-10 glasses a day should keep you feeling healthy and promote healing.
Scratch or itch the area:
The worst thing to do when you have a sunburn is to scratch it. However, as they heal, the skin affected tends to itch, tempting us to want to ease it. Be strong and avoid the temptation. Reach for some ice instead and rub it on the affected area. It should soothe the itch nicely.
If that doesn’t work, reach for white cider vinegar. The acetic acid in it is good for relieving pain and inflammation. It also helps alleviate itching. You can soak it in your bath, but if only your nose is burned, use a cotton swab to dab on the moisture to the affected areas.
Peel the skin
You may think this helps make it look better, but it really doesn’t. if your skin is burned, it has clearly visible patches of peeling skin, and only with time will it go. Peeling the skin can also lead to an infection, so if you thought it was a nuisance before, try dealing with an infected nose.
Should a piece of dead skin be hanging loose, cut it with scissors. The point is to avoid pulling away skin that is in the healing process. Always use an antibacterial agent after peeling the skin.
Go back out into the sun immediately
This is common knowledge. If you still have the will power to subject yourself to the severe sun rays after a sunburn, avoid the urge. Not only will your burn get worse, you may burn even more.
If you do have to go into the sun, follow the prevention tips given above.