Aromatic after-sun care: your skin will thank you!

At the height of summer, the sun blazes in all its glory. Many of us enjoy sunbathing: it can be a great a way to replenish your vitamins and can give your skin a radiant glow. But when heading out for some fun in the sun, you’ll be in trouble if you don’t protect your skin from ultraviolet rays.

Essential Oils

Claudie Gagnon
Claudie Gagnon
@AVogel_ca


15 July 2020

Refreshing after-sun gel

What could be more pleasant than applying a soothing, comforting and refreshing gel to your thirsty and irritated skin after spending a beautiful day baking under the raging sun?

Here's a simple recipe that provides a number of benefits for overheated skin:

Combine the sweet almond oil and lavender essential oil in a glass bowl. Use a small silicone spatula to stir the mixture well. Add the vitamin E, and finish by adding the aloe gel. Mix well and pour into a small brown glass jar.

Apply to areas of the skin that have been dried out or irritated by the sun.

This recipe yields enough for just a few uses and should be kept in the fridge. It's important to mix well before each use, as vegetable oils and fats naturally separate from the aqueous aloe gel.

This recipe has several benefits:

  • Aloe gel soothes, regenerates and moisturizes sun-damaged skin, replenishing the water and minerals that are so essential for healthy skin. Your irritated skin will especially appreciate the gel's cooling effect.
  • Sweet almond oil is suitable for sensitive skin and forms a light protective film. It's well tolerated and contains about 21% essential fatty acids that nourish the skin and protect it from external irritants.
  • Vitamin E's antioxidant properties help preserve the integrity of skin tissue. Not only that, but it also acts as a simple preservative and prevents rancidity. And last but not least, it activates the healing of damaged skin.
  • Lavender essential oil is a must when it comes to caring for skin irritated by the sun. This oil soothes and softens and is well tolerated by both adults' and children's skin. In addition, its fragrances are relaxing and foster much-needed relaxation at the end of a day spent outdoors.

Soothing and nourishing after-sun repair balm

Some people have particularly dry skin, and for those who spend a lot of time outdoors or like to tan, the sun can make things worse.

Here's a recipe for a very nourishing and replenishing after-sun repair balm.

Place the beeswax in a double boiler and melt over very low heat, gradually incorporating the shea butter and avocado oil. Stir well using a silicone spatula. Once everything is melted, remove from the heat. Wait 1 minute (maximum) and add the essential oils and vitamin E, and blend. Immediately pour into a brown glass container and allow to cool.

This ointment is excellent for nourishing, toning and repairing dry, sun-damaged skin.

  • Shea butter is obtained from the nuts of the shea tree, which is native to Africa. This butter has many advantages: it's protective, nutritious, nourishing and healing, and also helps skin maintain its elasticity. It contains a lot of essential fatty acids that contribute to healthy skin.
  • Avocado oil is rich in vitamins and therefore very nourishing to the skin, penetrating deep into the epidermis and providing dry skin with long-lasting relief. It even provides basic protection against the sun's rays, much like shea butter.
  • Beeswax, which creates a protective barrier against harsh weather and environmental factors, is also an effective emollient that relaxes and softens the skin.
  • In the essential oils department, geranium tones and firms the skin in addition to soothing sun-warmed skin. Skin sensitized by the sun's intense rays can benefit from geranium, a key player in the essential oil family, which soothes both skin and nerves. In fact, it's excellent for balancing emotions and can be very comforting—a definite plus!
    Ylang ylang, with its exotic floral fragrance, restores skin to a more toned and healthy appearance. This essential oil de-stresses the tissues, and its slightly aphrodisiac scent teases the senses. Commonly associated with contentment, harmony and serenity, its rich and heady fragrance envelops you on hot summer nights.

Thankfully, armed with these two easy recipes, you'll be able to pamper your skin with a soothing treatment after a day under the powerful mid-summer sun. Wishing you a well-protected summer!

References:
Fortin, Sylvie. Cosmétiques non toxiques, Editions La Presse, 2011.
Vallières, Marie-Christine. Fabrication des produits de beauté, Les Âmes Fleurs, 2016.
Baudoux, Dominique. Pour une cosmétique intelligente, Éditions Amyris, 2010.