What is an After Sun Lotion, and Why Do You Need It?


There’s nothing like a day spent out in the sun. It’s the ideal way to celebrate life and the people you love most in it.

But being out in the sun for a long time can also do some real damage to your skin if you’re not careful. 

That’s why, in addition to sunscreen, you may also want to consider using after-sun lotion the next time you spend some time out in the sun.

If you’re not familiar with after-sun lotion, don’t worry. We’ve got you covered. Keep reading to learn why it could be right for you.

What is after-sun lotion, exactly?

After-sun lotion is a special type of moisturizer that helps you recover from time in the sun. It features special ingredients that benefit your skin in ways beyond what standard lotion offers you.

You can pick up after-sun lotion in sprays, gels, and standard lotion dispensers. So it’s easy to find a version of the product that jives with your application preferences.

What are the benefits of it?

Soothe skin irritations

The amount of UV rays that your skin can handle varies based on its complexion. That, plus the fact that UV rays are impossible to spot, can make it hard to figure out when you’ve had too much sun.

And when you stay out in the sun for too long, you could experience everything from premature aging to potentially even skin cancer.

After-sun lotion is designed to soothe the skin irritations that cause problems like these. It features nutrient-rich ingredients that reduce the impact of sunburns and help you feel your best.

Moisturize your skin

When you spend a lot of time in the sun, your skin tends to try out. This can lead to flakiness, which is the last thing you want to have to deal with at the end of a beautiful day outside.

After-sun lotion can protect you from this fate by moisturizing your skin with natural ingredients like aloe vera and various types of oils.

Extend your tan

You can also pick up after-sun lotion that’s specially designed to extend your tan.

Tanning comes from a reaction between UVA radiation and the melanin in your skin. But when you get darker, that only happens to the top-most layer of your skin.

So if those top-level skin molecules flake off, you lose your tan. That’s how after-sun lotion helps you keep your tan longer.

It features ingredients that protect your top-level, tanned skin so that it takes much longer to flake off. That way, you can keep the dark complexion that you want for longer.

Cleanse the skin to make it smoother

Everybody wants smoother skin. And the right type of after-sun lotion can help you get it.

For example, Australian Gold sells After-Sun Lotion With Tea Tree Oil. It’s a powerful antioxidant that gently cleanses to provide you with smoother skin after a day in the sun.

Is there a difference between after-sun lotion and moisturizer?

The best way to think of after-sun lotion is as a special type of moisturizer. So although these two products belong to the same family, they aren’t 1-for-1 replicas of one another.

The main difference is that after-sun lotion has special ingredients meant to soothe the skin from sun damage, whereas standard moisturizer typically doesn’t.

If you use a normal moisturizer after a day in the sun, it’ll still help to hydrate your skin. It just won’t offer the same level of nourishment that you would get from an after-sun lotion with soothing ingredients like aloe vera and sunflower oil.

Some types of after-sun lotion even have products like hemp seed oil in them. This is a really powerful moisturizer that also protects the skin from the environment.

Ingredients like these typically aren’t featured in standard moisturizers. That’s what makes after-sun lotion a better product after a long day spent outdoors.

Can after-sun lotion protect me from the sun?

After-sun lotion isn’t designed to protect you from the sun. It doesn’t include any sunscreen, so it’s not a replacement for that.

This product is meant to help you recover from the sun instead of protecting you from it. That’s why they call after-sun lotion and not before-sun lotion.

How to apply after-sun lotion correctly

To illustrate the right way to use after-sun lotion, let’s look at how it fits into your skincare plan for an average day outside.

1. Apply your sunscreen

When you decide to go outdoors in the sun, you begin by applying your sunscreen first. There are lots of different botanical and plant-based sunscreen products to choose from, all of which will help to protect your skin from the sun.

As you apply your sunscreen, be sure to use about an ounce to cover your whole body. Don’t forget about your ears, neck, and the back of your knees either. 

2. Reapply sunscreen every two hours

Experts say that you should reapply sunscreen about every two hours that you spend outside.

That being said, the exact timing for your reapplications can vary depending on the strength of the sun and how much time you’re spending in it.

For example, the sun’s rays are at their strongest from about 12:00 - 3:00 PM. If you’re in direct sunlight during these hours on a hot day, you might need to apply more sunscreen faster than every two hours.

Alternatively, maybe your day outdoors is taking place early in the morning or late at night. In that case, you may be able to go a bit longer than two hours without having to worry about it.

3. Apply after-sun lotion when you get home

You only apply after-sun lotion once your day outside is done. You should try to put yours on as soon as possible once you’re out of the sun. That way, you can give your skin the nutrients that it’s asking for as soon as possible.

When applying after-sun lotion, you can use the same strategies that you would for any moisturizer. Simply place the after-sun lotion on any part of your skin that was exposed to the sun and rub it in.

If you got especially sunburned, then you may even want to use multiple applications of after-sun lotion. Doing so could make it a lot easier to deal with the pain that you often get from sunburns.

Does after-sun lotion cure sunburns?

Some people assume that after-sun lotion is designed to cure sunburns. But that’s not the right way of looking at it.

Sunburns can’t be cured. They’re symptoms of skin damage. And the only way that skin damage can resolve is through the body’s natural healing processes.

It’s more accurate to think of after-sun lotion as a cure for the symptoms of sunburns. 

The soothing ingredients can help you feel better while you’re dealing with red skin, pain, and swelling. But they can’t reverse the sun damage that’s already been done.

Do I really need after-sun lotion?

You really should have an after-sun lotion if you spend a lot of time in the sun. 

Sure, you could use a standard moisturizer to hydrate your skin after an outdoor outing. But these products don’t have the special ingredients that your body craves while recovering from the sun.

That means, although your skin will be hydrated after using a standard moisturizer, you’re still going to feel the full impact of whatever sun damage your skin experienced that day.

After-sun lotion both moisturizes your skin and helps to reduce the symptoms of too much sun exposure. It can help your skin look and feel its best in a way that other moisturizing products simply can’t match.

Australian Gold has nutrient-rich after-sun lotion to soothe your skin

Are you ready to pick up some after-sun lotion for your next day outside? If so, you should take a look at Australian Gold’s after-sun product line.

It features:

So no matter what type of support your skin needs after a day outside, you can find a product from us that provides it.

Plus, Australian Gold always uses natural, health-boosting ingredients in every product that we make. 

Whether you want Kakadu Plum to promote collagen production or Tea Tree Oil to gently cleanse and provide smoother skin, we’ve got you covered.

Take a look at our online store to find whatever suncare products you need to stay safe and healthy while enjoying the great outdoors.