My college-aged son is living at home for the summer. Yesterday, he went to the beach. Before he left the house, I tried to get him to bring along some sunscreen.
Not the chemical-laden stuff you get at the drugstore. Instead, I wanted him to use some natural sunscreen made from essential oils.
However, he refused. So he went to the beach for the day, unprotected.
Rosehip Oil for Your Face
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Naturally, he came home with a sunburn over much of his body. But he did allow me to apply rosehip seed oil to his back. This plant-based emollient has a reputation of being a good home remedy for sunburn.
Essential Oils Sunburn Relief
I mixed this with a little lavender essential oil, an aromatic that has an amazing history of healing burned skin. In the early 1900’s, a French researcher by the name of Rene-Maurice Gattefosse suffered terrible burns on his hands.
Being a chemist, he was familiar with the therapeutic properties of essential oils. So he stuck his hands in a vat of lavender oil. They healed quickly, with minimal scarring, according to various published accounts of this case. You can read more about lavender’s amazing ability to heal damaged skin here.
A couple of summers ago, when I stayed in the sun too long, I had a burn on my face. The redness disappeared very quickly after I applied some lavender oil. Now, when I’m planning to stay outside for any length of time, I use a DIY sunscreen with carrot seed oil.
Rosehip Oil For Sunburn
Anyway, staring at my son’s reddened back, I was horrified this happened. As a Mom, I also felt guilty for not absolutely insisting that he took some sunscreen before leaving the house. At least he agreed to let me help him, after the damage had already been done.
I already knew I’d be using lavender essential oil. But I did an Internet search for the best carrier oil to mix it with. Carriers are necessary if you plan to apply essential oils to your skin. Aromatic oils are so highly concentrated that they need to be diluted with another oil called a “carrier.” These have therapeutic properties in and of themselves. They also help “carry” the aromatic compounds into the body. So it makes sense, on a number of levels, to use them.
Since I also knew that rosehip seed oil is rich in natural Vitamin C, and it’s considered good for repairing damaged skin, I did some research to see if it’s commonly used for sunburns. Apparently, it is. According to Internet health expert Dr. Joseph Mercola, DO, rosehip seed oil is a good home remedy for sunburned skin.
Rosehip Seed Oil For Sunburn
Anyway, I put about a teaspoon of rosehip seed oil on a clear glass plate and added a drop of lavender essential oil. This was the mixture that went on my son’s badly burned back.
We already have rosehip seed oil in the house because I use it on my face as a natural wrinkle fighter. This oil, which is taken from the bulb of the rose, contains a number of other nutrients, in addition to Vitamin C, plus essential fatty acids. Vitamin C is believed to be good for stimulating collagen, the protein that holds the skin together. As we age, our natural collagen production falls, and our skin begins to droop. This is why Vitamin C is found in so many anti-aging creams.
Organic Rosehip Oil For Face
The brand of rosehip seed oil I use is sold by Aura Cacia, one of the leading sources for essential oils. Right now, giving the reported instances of essential oil fraud, I like to buy my aromatherapy supplies from a handful of trusted companies. Aura Cacia is one of them. Rosehip seed oil is thick, so I like the fact that bottle has a pump. The brand I used previously did not, and it was difficult getting the oil out of the bottle.
Natural Sunscreen With Essential Oils
Of course, the best way to “treat” sunburn is to prevent it from happening in the first place. That’s why I’ll probably be more insistent that my son take along some of my homemade sunscreen with essential oils. Plant-based products, apparently, can provide sun protection.
Good, common-sense sunburn prevention means covering yourself with appropriate clothing and staying out of the direct sun while it’s at its strongest, from 10 am to 2 pm. (Of course, this was the very time my son headed to the beach.)
Natural Sunscreen Recipe With Essential Oils
I can’t promise that any recipe you see here will provide adequate sun coverage for you. I have a Mediterranean complexion, and my skin doesn’t burn easily. What works for me may not work for anyone else. So you need to do your own research and arrive at a solution that will allow you to stay outdoors safely. All I’m doing is sharing how I plan to keep my family protected from too much sun.
We do need some sunlight, in order to make enough Vitamin D, a crucial nutrient. So I urge you to check with your own healthcare provider to see how to get enough of this nutrient, while protecting your skin from damaging UVA rays, and how natural sunscreen could potentially fit into this plan.
How To Make Essential Oil Sunscreen
You need a carrier oil whenever you apply essential oils to your skin. For this recipe, I’ll be using fractionated coconut oil, instead of rosehip seed oil. That’s because coconut oil is said to contain compounds that offer natural sun protection. According to the Natural Society, coconut oil has an SPF of 10. I’ve seen other estimates saying that coconut oil has an SPF of 4. In any event, coconut oil has long been used as sun protection by people living in the South Pacific.
Anyway, the next time my son goes to the beach, he’ll hopefully be using Mom’s natural sunscreen. Here’s the recipe I’ll be using.
2 tbs. of Fractionated coconut oil
2 drops of Lavender Essential Oil
2 drops of Carrot Seed Oil
Homemade Sunscreen Carrot Seed Oil
This recipe can be doubled or tripled. I will mix these together and hope my son applies them to his skin. I can put any extra in a clean container, and hope he takes it with him to the beach, and reapplies it after he goes in the water. I have seen conflicting claims on the SPF value of carrot seed oil. So I can’t make any claims. Both carrot seed oil and lavender are two essential oils that are often added to natural sunscreen formulas. I hope my son will take other sun precautions as well, such as using an umbrella and staying out of the sun during the middle of the day.
These statements have not been approved by the FDA. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. Women who are pregnant or nursing should not use essential oils unless directed to do so by a healthcare professional.