Sunburn Peeling Discoloration


Have you ever suffered sunburn?

Did you notice peeling skin after being exposed to the sun?

Are you planning to spend some time in the sun but not sure how to avoid sunburn peeling?

Today, we’ll help you understand just that as we talk about sunburn and why it happens, , how to know if you are suffering sunburn, what are the side effects, how to prevent and make sure your skin can return to normal faster.

What is sunburn and how does it happen? 

If you have ever spent a considerable amount of time in the sun you may have noticed red patches on your skin. This condition is known as sunburn. Sunburn happens when your skin is exposed to the harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays of the sun for a long period of time.

What are the *WARNING SIGNS* that your skin is beginning to burn?

The effects of sunburn will be seen differently on different types of skin. Some people may suffer from sunburn immediately after sun exposure while others can take longer. Here are some of the most common signs of sunburn.

how to deal sunburn peeling discoloration
  • One of the first signs that your skin is getting damaged is the redness. This is your body’s way of reacting to the inflammation from the sun’s rays. It gets into a repair mode, for which your blood vessels begin to dilate and you can notice the redness on the surface.
  • Once this happens your skin will begin to lose out on the moisture that it had and also start losing the important hydration. This is why your skin then starts to feel tight and dry, as well as itchy.
  • The next step in this damaging process is that the cells in your skin will start becoming thicker and will start to produce the pigment that is known as melanin. This is why you will notice the pigmentation spots on the surface of your skin. This is your skin’s natural way of preventing the harmful UV rays of the sun to penetrate to the deeper layers of your skin and to try and protect the DNA of your skin cells.


Being exposed to the sun can damage your skin a lot, and while some signs may be temporary and short-lived, some can be really long term and do a considerable amount of harm. Remember that not everyone will show and feel the same effects of exposure to the sun as the rest, and while some people can show these symptoms very soon, some may take longer to actually be able to see how the rays of the sun have damaged their skin. Also, depending on what part of the world you are in, whether you are in a tropical climate, a cool climate or a hot climate, the severity of the sun and the timing of the day can also have an impact on how severe the signs of sun damage will show up on your skin.

Here are some of the most common side effects that you can suffer as a result of sunburn.

what is sunburn
  • Becoming red in the face and all over the skin, especially so on the areas that have received the highest amount of exposure to the sun. You can usually start to see this within a few minutes of getting exposed to the sun, to a few hours of being out in the damaging rays.
  • A few hours in the sun and you can start to experience the next side effect, which is a tight feeling in the skin. This happens because your skin starts to dry up and the dryness and the tightness further lead to itching too.
  • While these are some of the most immediate side effects that you can see from being exposed to the harmful rays of the sun, you will start to notice a darkening of the skin within a few hours of being in the sun. This will be a uniform kind of darkening on the parts of the skin that were expose to the sun, and you will notice a considerable difference in the skin tone and complexion between the skin that was exposed to the sun’s rays and the areas of the skin that were covered. This is called sun tanning.
  • Within the next day or next couple of days, you will also start to notice signs of hyperpigmentation on your skin. Depending on how sensitive your skin or how prone you are to pigmentation, you may notice these dark patches around your eyes, around your nose or mouth area, around your elbows, on your neck and so on. These spots can actually become kind of permanent and can take much longer to fade away, sometimes as long as a few weeks or months.
  • Yet another side effect of exposure to the sun that can affect your skin is when your skin starts to peel off. This will usually happen in the next few days after you have suffered sunburn.

Why does some skin end up discolored after sunburn peels?

sunburn peeling discoloration

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There are various reasons that could cause a discolouration on your skin after a sunburn peel. When your body is exposed to the sun for too long, it suffers severe burns and as a result, your skin starts to peel. To protect itself from the sun and to prevent it from entering deeper into the layers of your skin till the DNA and causing DNA damage, the cells in your skin start producing more amounts of pigment that is known as melanin. This pigment is the one that is responsible for the darkening patches on your skin.

When you suffer skin peeling, the topmost layers of your skin start to come off and in a few days, the new layer of skin that was lying below this one starts to come up on the surface. However, since the pigmentation does reach deeper than the topmost layer of the skin, it still shows up.

How can it be prevented?

  • Take a bath with lukewarm water.
  • Apply ice to reduce itching.
  • Moisturize your skin.
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    Drink water and stay hydrated.
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    Do not peel the loose skin.

2 *QUICK FIXES* For Discolored Skin
From Peeling:

1. Even out the color of your skin by using makeup:

This is one of the instant fixes that you can try, but avoid unless absolutely necessary.

2. Use sunscreen once your skin starts to heals to protect it against any further hyper-pigmentation: 

This will protect it against further damage from the sun.

How long will it take for skin tone to even out naturally?

It can take about a few weeks to a few months for your skin tone to become even again. If you feel it is taking too long and there is any pain or discomfort, please consult a dermatologist.

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