Sunburns on Different Skin Tones

Sunburns on Different Skin Tones

3rd Jul 2020

It is the summer season and it is a perfect time to talk about sunburns. Yes, especially if you plan to spend some time outdoors, it is crucial to stay safe and keep your skin protected. We would like to break some myths around the topic as well.

Let’s talk about them in more details so You are ready.

All you need to know about sunburns on different skin tones
All you need to know about sunburns on different skin tones

Sunburns vs skin tone

Developed in 1975, dermatologists use the Fitzpatrick scale to determine how a person’s skin will react to sun exposure.

According to the scale, all skin tones fall into one of six categories:

Type 1ivory skin that always freckles and burns, never tans
Type 2fair or pale skin that burns and peels often, tans minimally
Type 3fair to beige skin that occasionally burns, sometimes tans
Type 4light brown or olive skin that rarely burns, tans easily
Type 5 brown skin that rarely burns, tans easily and darkly
Type 6dark brown or black skin that rarely burns, always tans

Types 1 through 3 have the greatest sunburn risk. While types 4 through 6 have a lower risk. Yes, read it again. A lower risk does not mean you cannot get sunburns. Of course, each category has a very large variety of skin colours and tones which depends on many factors, including genetics. If you don’t know where you fall on the Fitzpatrick scale, ask your doctor. As everyone can get sunburned, everyone is at risk for skin cancer as well.

What does a sunburn look like on light and darker skin?

Sunburns on lighter-skin tones will typically look red and feel hot, painful, or both. The burned skin may also feel tight.

People with darker skin can also develop sunburns. You may not notice any redness. Still, you’ll have all the other symptoms, such as heat, sensitivity, itchiness, and skin peeling over the next few days.

Sunburn usually gets better on its own within a week.

Lagom Sun Cream
Lagom Sun Cream

How can I protect myself from sun exposure and sunburns?

Here are the basics to follow:

Apply sunscreen. Choose a broad-spectrum sunscreen. An ounce (enough to fill a shot glass) is required to cover an adult’s face and body. Don’t forget to apply a sun cream on your ears, lips, and eyelids.

Remember to reapply sunscreen– It’s recommended to reapply sun cream every two hours unless you spent a lot of time outdoors in the open sun.

Stay in the shade during peak times. Sun is strongest between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. Either limit your exposure or cover-up during this period.

Ensure you have the right accessories. A hat and sunglasses that block at least 99 percent of UV light will help to protect your skin.

Purito Centella Green Level Unscented Sun SPF50 texture
Purito Centella Green Level Unscented Sun SPF50 texture

How to treat sunburns?

We always recommend focusing on soothing and calming the skin. Sunburn is inflammation. Hence, your skin will enjoy the hero soothing ingredients such as Centella Asiatica (aka cica), panthenol, beta-glucan, rose water, propolis, snail mucin.

Are there any early skin cancer signs I should watch for?

This is the worst scenario and outcome of developing repetitive sunburns and not protecting your skin.

Check your skin for large, changing, or asymmetrical moles and unusual-looking skin patches that don’t heal.

If you have dark or black skin, please don’t assume your risk of skin cancer is zero. Regularly check your skin for suspicious moles and see a doctor if something looks or feels different on your skin.