My Top 4 Natural First-Aid Treatments for Summer Skin Problems

Many of you know that I spend a lot of time in the great outdoors.  I own a kayak, I love to camp and hike, and I recently started planning my first 1800 mile road trip.  Back in the day, I rarely got bitten by bugs, and I never got sunburned, as I tend to tan easily.  However, as I have gotten older, things have changed.  Starting a couple of years ago, I noticed I was getting bit more and more.  I also noticed that, while I do still tan quickly, I tend to burn at least on the first few times out.

Although I always used mild sun protection, I found I needed more.  I especially needed to start using bug repellent of some sort.  Always wanting to go the natural route in skin care, I did a little research and found what works best for me.  I have five skin care problems I face regularly in the summer.  Here are my five natural first-aid tips for those summer skin care problems.

1. Heat Rash

Heat rash is often a result of hot and humid weathers. It occurs primarily when the underlying subcutaneous layer begins to produce more sebum or natural oil. This problem is commonly known as "prickly heat" or sometimes as "summer rash", is tiny pink or red eruption on the surface of the skin.
I use a simple paste made with baking soda and ground oatmeal.  I mix it with warm water, and apply it and leave it on for about 20 minutes before I take a cool shower. Works every time!

2. Bug Bites

Let's face it, insect bites are a nuisance, causing swelling, itching and sometimes pain.  My first line of defense is ice.  Icing a bite immediately will help keep the bug poison from spreading to other parts of the body, reduce swelling and inflammation, and numb the area, lessening the need to itch. Use ice therapy on mosquito, bee, spider, fire ant and centipede bites.  I then use a great little product called Mary Jane's Skin First Aid Formula.  It's a natural combination of coconut oil, sweet almond oil, Bulgarian lavender essential oil and hemp seed oil.  It does a very good job of soothing the itch of a sting or bite.  However, if an allergic reaction happens or it is a serious bite, such as from the poisonous Brown Recluse Spider, immediately seek medical help.

3.  Oily skin

In the summer I prefer to wear mineral powder makeup because it keeps my skin from looking too oily and it gives me the coverage I need.  I carry with me a mixture of mostly cornstarch with a bit of my mineral powder for color and dab it on when I get that shiny look.  As far as cleansing my skin, I use J.R. Watkins castille soap.  It is very gentle so I can use it on my face.  Clary Sage is my favorite.  It always leaves my skin clear of excess oil but doesn't leave it feeling like there is a film on my face like regular soap does.

4. Burns

Getting too much sun or being careless around an outside grill can result in summer burns.  For minor first degree burns caused by brief contact with a hot object, water or steam, and sunburn, I use a couple of natural products.  Aloe Vera works very well in soothing the burn, and it helps to heal my burns faster.  I buy pure Aloe Vera and apply it with a soft cotton pad.  I also use the same product I use for bug bites, Mary Jane's Skin First Aid Formula.  Here again it helps soothe the pain of a burn, and it's incredibly good at moisturizing sunburned skin.  I never need to use a lot of this product for it to work, so I apply this sparingly to burned areas.

Remember folks, this information is not intended as a substitute for professional medical treatment or consultation.  Always consult with your physician in the event of a serious injury.

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