A sunburn is skin damage from the sun's ultraviolet (UV) rays. Most sunburns cause mild pain and redness but affect only the outer layer of skin (first-degree burn). The red skin might hurt when you touch it. These sunburns are mild and can usually be treated at home. But sunburn also increases your risk for skin cancer and melanoma.
Your skin type affects how easily you become sunburned. People with fair or freckled skin, blond or red hair, and blue eyes usually sunburn easily. Your age also affects how your skin reacts to the sun. The skin of children younger than 6 and adults older than 60 is more sensitive to sunlight.
There is little you can do to stop skin from peeling after a sunburn-it is part of the healing process. Lotion may help relieve the itching. Read more about the symptoms, treatments, and prevention of sunburns.