With summer still in full swing, we want to help make your adventures in the great outdoors a little more enjoyable.
Oats are a natural, hypoallergenic alternative to commercial skin-care products and are full of B-vitamins which can help moisturize and repair dry and blistered skin. Oats also have anti-inflammatory properties to help calm bites, and soothe itchy skin.
Not only are home remedies made with oats super economical and easy to make, they’ve also stood the test of time. It turns out, our ancestors were pretty darn smart. People have been using oats since the Bronze Age to treat burns, bites, poison ivy and even rashes like eczema in virtually the same way we described.
To make a soothing remedy for bites, rashes and areas of the body that have seen too much sun, take a small bowl of oat flour and slowly add in cool (not cold) water until you have a smooth paste. Gently dab or smooth the oat paste onto your skin and let it sit on the affected area for about ten minutes, then thoroughly rinse with cool water.
You only want to let it sit on your skin – be sure not to rub it in. Because oats can act as an exfoliant, rubbing could make your situation worse.
If you’re sunburnt all over, or covered in bites or poison ivy, the easiest way to get relief will likely be an oat bath. Mix one cup of oat flour into a tub of water and stir thoroughly, until the water appears milky. Then, just lie back and relax, and let the oats soothe your skin. When you’re ready to get out of the bath, rinse your skin thoroughly with cool water.
It never hurts to have some oat flour on hand throughout the summer to keep in your first aid kit or with your camping supplies. And, remember, if you don’t have oat flour on hand, you can make your own by pulsing uncooked rolled oats in a food processor, blender or coffee grinder until they become a fine powder. You can store any unused oat flour in an air-tight container for up to six months.
NOTE: A big difference between us and our ancestors is modern medicine. The recipes we’ve suggested are not a substitute for professional medical care. If home-remedies are not providing relief, please seek medical attention.