A Beginner's Guide to After Sun Care


Most of us know that we should put on sunscreen before spending time outdoors. But many people neglect caring for their skin after a long day in the sun.

Looking after your skin after you’ve been at the beach all day or even just running errands is crucial – failing to take care of your skin after excessive sun exposure can cause long-lasting damage.

It’s why we’ve put together this article. It covers the ins and outs of after-sun care to give you a complete overview of what it takes to protect your skin – without sacrificing your time in the outdoors!

Here’s what you’ll learn

  • What after-sun care is and why it matters
  • The best tools for after-sun care
  • How to create your own ideal after-sun care plan
  • Other important tips for protecting your skin after time in the sun

So without further delay, let’s get into it.

What is after-sun care, exactly?

After-sun care is just what it sounds like – the process of taking care of your skin after you’ve spent time in the sun.

Why worry about after-sun care – isn’t sunscreen enough?

After-sun care matters because ultraviolet rays from the sun can cause damage to your skin.

In the short term, you might experience sunburn or dry skin. But in the long-term, excessive sun exposure can cause premature aging and even skin cancer.

Before you panic, you can prevent most – if not all – of that damage by applying the right amount of sunscreen to your skin before and during your day in the sun.

Experts such as those at Hopkins Medicine recommend that you reapply sunscreen every two hours. Many of us don’t actually do that, so when we return after a day in the sun it’s even more important to replenish and nourish our skin.

That’s where after-sun care comes into play. With the right plan and products, you can look and feel your best even if you don’t always take perfect care of your skin while in the sun.

The essential toolkit for after-sun care

If you’re ready to start taking better care of your skin after being out in the sun, here’s what you’ll need to get started:

Creating your ideal after-sun care plan

Every body is unique, so your ideal after-sun care plan should be too. Here are five steps you can take to figure yours out:

Step 1: Know your skin

First, you need to have a good understanding of your skin. Are you prone to dry skin already? If so, that may need to be a focal point of your after-sun care plan since the sun dries out skin as well.

Or maybe you deal with oily skin. In that case, you may choose to use fewer skincare products in your after-sun care plan or special ones that won’t contribute to the problem.

If you don’t fit into a clear skin type category, that’s okay, too. You can do some experimenting to figure out which products and techniques help you feel your best.

Step 2: Hydrate and cleanse

It’s best to begin your after-sun care routine with a cold shower. This cleanses the skin of salt water and chlorine droplets – both of which work to magnify the sun’s rays and dehydrate your skin.

By starting with a shower, you’ll get rid of any dehydrating or drying agents that are left on your skin from the day. That way, you can begin your skincare routine with a clean slate.

We’re also including drinking water in this step. Water doesn’t just keep the body hydrated and refreshed, it also improves skin elasticity. This is especially important after a day in the sun.

The sooner you start drinking water after your outdoor adventure, the sooner your skin will get back to its naturally healthy state.

Step 3: Replenish and recover

Now you’re ready to begin replenishing your skin with what it lost during your day in the sun. That typically means giving it a healthy dose of moisture.

Our after-sun moisturizer with hemp could be just what you need. It’s jam-packed with antioxidant-rich hemp seed oil as well as Vitamins A, C, and E.

Whether you use our moisturizer or not, the best time to apply it will be just after you get out of the shower. That’s when your skin is at its cleanest so whichever moisturizer you use will have its biggest impact.

You may also need to apply some aloe vera gel to your skin. It’s a natural plant that soothes sunburns, reduces inflammation, and helps to lock moisture into your skin.

You can use it as a replacement for after-sun moisturizer or as an addition to it by putting it over any parts of your skin that were sunburned.

Step 4: Don’t forget lips, eyes, and ears

As you’re putting together your after-sun care plan, make sure to account for the damage that occurs to forgettable body parts like the lips, eyes, and ears.

You can use a hydrating balm to take care of your lips after sun exposure and your standard after-sun moisturizer to look after your eyelids and ears.

Step 5: Learn and adapt

Finally, it’s rare that your first attempt at creating an after-sun care plan will be perfect. You may find that your first routine doesn’t give you enough moisturizer or that it takes too long to complete.

Regardless, you shouldn’t lock in your first attempts at after-sun care and do them blindly again and again.

Instead, be open to trying new things and seeing how they impact your skin. Learning and adapting in this way will help you maintain healthy after-sun habits for a lifetime.

Other things to know about after-sun care

Consider adding an exfoliating routine after long days in the sun

When ultraviolet light from the sun gets into your skin, it can cause your skin cells to begin dying. Not only can this lead to negative health consequences, but it can also create unwanted blemishes caused by built-up dead skin cells.

That’s why it’s also a smart move to add some exfoliation to your skincare routine from time to time. 

You don’t necessarily need to go through a full exfoliation treatment every time that you spend some time in the sun (as you may scrub away that hard-earned tan!) However, your skin will thank you for it if you add this step to your routine after especially long days in the sun.

Proper pre-sun care makes after-sun care a breeze

It’s also worth mentioning that your pre-sun care routine will have a big impact on what you need to do to your skin after a day in the sun.

If you use the right sunscreen products and reapply them at the proper intervals, then your skin will likely sustain very little damage from your time in the sun.

That means you’ll be able to get away with a quick and easy after-sun care routine instead of having to go through a long process to replenish your skin.

It’s another reason why using high-quality sunscreen is so important.

Even the best after-sun care plan can’t protect your skin from the long-term impacts of too much sun

As you go about coming up with your after-sun care plan, make sure to keep this fact in mind. 

After-sun care helps your skin get back to its naturally healthy state. But excessive sun exposure can damage skin cells and even cause long-term health effects like cancer.

While this doesn’t need to prevent you from enjoying the sun, it’s crucial to ensure you take good care of your skin while you do so by picking the right sunscreen product for you. 

The right products can help you extend your tan and look after your skin

Many people who go out and spend time in the sun do so, at least in part, because they want to get a glowing tan.

If that describes you, then you may want to begin using tan extension products as part of your after-sun care routine.

For example, our Moisture Lock Tan Extender includes all-natural ingredients like:

  • Aloe vera
  • Sunflower seed oil
  • Tea tree oil
  • Olive fruit oil

Together, these ingredients do more than just nourish your skin after a long day in the sun. They also help to lock in moisture so that your tan lasts longer.

Products like this could be a good fit if you want to hang onto your glow for as long as possible.

Australian Gold has everything you need to take care of your skin after a day in the sun

The products that you use in your after-sun care plan have a huge impact on how well that plan works. If you want to have healthy, moisturized skin with minimal sun damage, you need to use quality products with all-natural nourishing ingredients.

Australian Gold sells a wide variety of after-sun products that fit this bill. 

Take a look at our after-sun product line to sell all of the affordable, nutrient-rich products that you can choose from.