If you were at Beaver Stadium this Saturday cheering the Nittany Lions onto a victory against Akron, chances are you got sunburned. Walking to classes Monday, it was easy to tell who was at the game based on how red people’s faces were.
A few factors can be attributed to the number of awkward tan lines and sunburns seen around campus since the football game:
- The start time was at noon, and according to WebMD, “you are more likely to get a sunburn between 10 in the morning and 4 in the afternoon, when the sun’s rays are the strongest.” Meaning if you were outside tailgating and then at the game, you were outside during the hours you are most likely to get sunburned.
- It reached 82 degrees on Saturday, which was significantly hotter than the rest of the week. So most people probably did not think to use sunscreen. According to skincancer.org SPF 50 blocks out 98 percent of UVB rays, which is the main cause of sunburns.
A sunburn, by definition, is reddening, inflammation, and, in sever cases, blistering and peeling of the skin caused by overexposure to the ultraviolet rays of the sun. So if your skin is still red (and probably starting to peel) the most effective way to treat your sunburn is aloe vera.
The aloe vera plant can grow up to four feet tall, and according to the National Center for Alternative and Complementary Medicine: “Aloe leaves contain a clear gel that is often used as a topical ointment”
Fox News explains the benefits of aloe vera, “the cooling, soothing gel of this beautiful succulent plant provides almost immediate relief for sunburn pain.”
Not only is aloe vera effective, it’s also safe to use, with little to no side effects. According to the Natural Science Journal, aloe vera gel is safe if applied topically.
So how does it work? What makes aloe vera more effective at treating a sunburn than any other plant in your backyard?
Aloe is 99 percent water, but according to The University of Maryland Medical Center it also contains glycoproteins and polysaccharides. “Glycoproteins speed the healing process by stopping pain and inflammation, while polysaccharides stimulate skin growth and repair.” These two powerful components give aloe vera its healing powers that make it a popular, and effective way to treat sun burns.