As much as we love the summer, it can be a nuisance for people prone to skin conditions like hives. Also known as urticaria, the condition can cause itchy red or flesh-colored welts for several weeks or longer, according to the American Academy of Dermatology Association.
If it’s your first time dealing with hives, don’t be alarmed when your face and neckline break out in an itchy rash. As frustrating as hives can be, there are ways to handle this skin condition.
Here’s everything you need to know about chronic hives, and what you can do to get rid of them this summer.
Hives, or urticaria, is a skin flare-up that causes red or flesh-colored welts to appear on the skin. They can be caused by certain triggers such as an allergic reaction to food, medication, insect bites, or certain plants.
The body’s immune system responds to these reactions by executing a chemical attack. The raised red bumps that pop up on your skin occur when histamine and other chemicals trigger a leakage of blood plasma from your blood vessels.
There’s also such a thing as stress hives. As the name suggests, these happen when you experience high levels of stress in your life, resulting in bumps and skin rashes. And then there’s heat hives, also called cholinergic urticaria, which occurs when there’s an increase in your body temperature. Conversely, hives on skin may erupt after cold exposure. This type of hive is known as cold urticaria.
Fortunately, there are skincare products and home remedies you can try to alleviate hives on face. Scroll down to hear all your options for treating summer hives.
Take a Cold, CBD-Infused Bath
For temporary relief, immerse yourself in a cold bath. Cold provides numbing relief while helping to soothe itching and skin irritation. This is an effective remedy if you suspect you may be dealing with cholinergic urticaria, a type of hives caused by hot baths, exercise or fever.
Enhance the soothing benefits of a cool soak by pouring in some of Truly’s Mary Jane Bubble Bath. Formulated with 300 mg of CBD, a powerful anti-inflammatory, it can help you wind down while easing red, itchy skin. Soak up the CBD-infused bubbles, and feel your pain fade away. In addition to its anti-inflammatory benefits, it also contains caffeine, retinol, and glycolic acid to brighten and tighten your skin.
No time for a bath? Try a cold compress instead!
Apply a Humectant
According to dermatologists, moisturizing the affected area can help your hives heal much more quickly and effectively. The more hydrated your skin is, the less it will be likely to itch and dry out.
Moisturizers seal in active ingredients and block harmful external aggressors out. Look for creams or lotions that contain humectants — ingredients that help skin retain moisture. Some of the most common include glycerin, hyaluronic acid, and aloe vera. Aloe is typically used to treat sunburn and heat rash (prickly heat). However, it can be just as effective at quelling hives.
We recommend Truly’s Best Buddies Whipped Body Butter. It’s made with a nourishing blend of aloe, hyaluronic acid, mango, and sea kelp to hydrate, repair, and protect injured skin.
Wear Loose-Fitting Clothes
Since hives is a form of skin inflammation, it’s best to avoid anything that will irritate your skin further, such as harsh soaps and extra snug clothing. Swap out your tight shirts and jeans for more breathable attire to prevent it from rubbing your skin and increasing irritation or overheating.
Always Apply Sunscreen
Solar urticaria is a type of hives caused by exposure to UVA/UVB rays. Wearing sunscreen on a daily basis blocks out those UV rays and can help prevent symptoms from occurring. The experts recommend choosing SPF with titanium oxide or zinc oxide, which protect your skin from UVA, UVB, and visible light. Reapply every 2 hours, or more frequently if you’re sweating.
Turn on the Air Conditioning
If you’re suffering with heat hives, it’s important to keep your body cool to minimize flareups and quell itching. Switch on the air conditioning so that you can stay in a cool and calm environment, giving your skin a chance to cool off and recover.
Slather on Some Calamine Lotion
Calamine lotion is an excellent skin soothing formula that can reduce the need to scratch and prevent infection. “It has been used for centuries for its anti-itch, astringent, and antiseptic properties,” says dermatologist Dr. Joshua Zeichner.
You can use it on everything from your summer rashes to your hives, and it’ll quickly alleviate the discomfort. Some derms say it can ease skin conditions like eczema, too.
Spritz On Some Witch Hazel Mist
It won’t get rid of hives, but it will relieve the discomfort associated with the skin condition. That’s because it’s rich in tannings and antioxidants, which help reduce swelling and speed up healing.
You’ll find witch hazel in Truly’s Volcanic Rosewater Body Mist. This calming body spray is enriched with rose, aloe, witch hazel, and vitamin C to heal, hydrate, and soothe your skin while leaving you smelling floral-y. Pack it in your bag so that you can spritz it on anytime hives hit!
Pop an Antihistamine
“Because hives are triggered by a release of histamine, oral antihistamines are generally the most effective treatment,” says board-certified dermatologist Hadley King, MD. Antihistamines are an over-the-counter (OTC) treatment that can help block the signals triggering a hives flareup.
Some of your the best antihistamines for hives include Benadryl (diphenhydramine), Chlor-Trimeton (chlorpheniramine), Allegra (fexofenadine), Claritin (loratadine), and Zyrtec (cetirizine).
If you are experiencing chronic hives and no treatment seems to be helping, schedule an appointment with an allergist to help you pinpoint allergens, discuss triggers and offer potential treatments.
Hives usually aren’t serious, but they can definitely be uncomfortable. If you’re prone to heat hives in the summer, follow these tips above for fast relief. You can also work on preventing them from forming in the first place by staying out of hot environments, always wearing sunscreen, and opting for loose, breathable clothing.