A woman in white crop top and black shorts outdoors, shielding her eyes from the sun.

Clear and sunny skies make for a perfect time to enjoy the outdoors– that is, until the dreaded heat rash creeps in. These tiny, itchy bumps look like and can occur when sweat gets trapped in your pores. But you can still enjoy a day out in the sun without worry. Follow these tips to keep your skin smooth and fresh, even after a sweat sesh.

Identifying Heat Rash

The main culprit of heat rash or miliaria is . Naturally, the skin cools off by producing sweat, which then evaporates to help release heat. If there is too much perspiration, it will clog the sweat ducts and cause inflammation. Factors such as hot and humid weather, friction from clothing, and heavy lotion blocking the pores can worsen heat rash symptoms.

Heat rash, locally known as bungang araw, manifests in different forms. Some experience itchy and prickly bumps, while others have small blisters that resemble acne. According to the US National Library of Medicine, the symptoms may differ from one person to another, depending on these types: 

  • Miliaria crystallina. Sweat bubbles that burst easily. It’s not itchy or painful.
  • Miliaria rubra. Commonly known as prickly heat, it causes red, itchy bumps. 
  • Miliaria pustulosa. It forms firm bumps that may become painful to the touch. This condition can recur.

One way to differentiate heat rash from other like eczema is by looking at the affected area. Rashes due to clogged sweat glands only occur in clothed areas, such as the back, underarms, and shoulders.

Heat Rash Prevention Steps

Don’t sweat too much about the possibility of getting a heat rash. You can avoid it by making sure your body stays cool. Aside from going about your day inside an air-conditioned room, there are plenty of ways to keep heat rash at bay.

1. Enjoy a cold shower.

If you enjoy hot showers, you’d be surprised by how incredibly refreshing a cold shower can be. It’s a great heat rash treatment for when you notice redness and itching on your skin. The Journal of Investigative Dermatology reports that cooling the skin with cold water temporarily soothes itchy skin. To step up your shower game, use a germ-fighting soap like Lifebuoy Antibacterial Bodywash, which clears your pores and protects you against bacterial skin infections. 

2. Keep your skin dry.

Prevent sweat build-up by bringing a clean handkerchief or a pack of tissues wherever you go. Dab it slowly on your face and neck area to reduce any dampness. For the underarm area, ditch your regular deodorant and switch to antiperspirant, which blocks the sweat glands effectively. If you’re about to do rigorous activities such as hot yoga or , packing spare clothes in your is a must!

3. Wear loose clothing.

Tight clothing like skinny jeans or body-skimming dresses can aggravate heat rash. Let your skin breathe by choosing and loose clothing. If you have plans to go out in the middle of a hot day, layer up with a linen shirt to protect your skin from direct sunlight. You can channel either the sporty chic style or the trending .

4. Change your bedding.

How often do you change your bed sheet? Experts say you should change it once every week, or every two weeks if you’re feeling lazy. Imagine all the dirt and oil rubbing off on your sheets. It’s a breeding ground for bacteria because these microbes thrive on damp and dirty surfaces. So, sleeping on a clean sheet every night will prevent you from getting rashes all over your body. From now on, don’t skip laundry days, and choose hypoallergenic materials like cotton and linen for your bed covers.

5. Use mild body care products.

Heat rash can cause the affected skin to dry out and become irritated. To speed up the healing process, reach for a product that can nourish the skin gently. Antibacterial Soap Mild Care contains Activ Silver+ formula that improves the skin’s defense against pathogens. It also has lavender oil, which helps reduce inflammation and is safe for . For your deodorant, use a mild formula like Dove 0% Aluminum Deodorant Spray, which allows you to sweat naturally while staying fresh.

If your symptoms persist, talk to your dermatologist about a heat rash treatment that suits your skin and budget. Don't try any home remedies for bungang araw before consulting with a doctor to avoid aggravating your condition.

Remember, scratching leads to scarring. Place an ice pack or cold compress on itchy skin instead. Lastly, practice good personal hygiene to stave off heat rash.