Living with a Sun Allergy

Living with a Sun Allergy - PMLE - Poly Morphic Light Eruption

I recently learnt that I was allergic to the sun and it’s been pretty hard trying to manage the symptoms of it. I thought I would write a post about my struggles living with a sun allergy and the things I have to do to manage when the weather gets too warm.

I’ve always been pale and although I can catch some ‘colour’ I’ve never really been able to achieve that tanned look. On holiday I would burn very quickly on my shoulders, face and chest area whilst the rest of me pretty much stayed the same colour. I haven’t always been allergic to the sun and used to happily wear pretty day dresses and strappy vest tops out and about when the weather got warmer. Unfortunately now this would not be possible. On some of our hottest days this summer I’ve had to stay indoors or in the shade as if my skin is in the sun for too long I break out into hives. Not being able to dress summery like everyone else is really depressing and having too explain to people why I’m covered up on the hottest day of the year is annoying.

I’ve had to change a lot of the things I would do in the Summer but it hasn’t stopped me going out and enjoying, here are a few of the things that I now have to be aware of when out in the sun:

Staying in the Shade

Whilst everyone is out frolicking in the sun I can still enjoy as well without being in direct sunlight. Investing in a parasol or beach umbrella is the perfect way to get outside but still ensure that you are shaded. I might look old before my time walking down to the beach with my umbrella but if it means I can stay out for longer then it’s worth it.

Covering Up

Just because I’ve had to cover my chest and shoulder area doesn’t mean I can’t look fashionable doing it. ASOS has been my go to for midi dresses that have short or capped sleeves that make me still look like I’m enjoying the warmer weather whilst covering up sensitive areas of skin. I’ve also invested in lots of slogan t-shirts that can be thrown over swimwear which are always a life saver on sun holidays by the pool.

Factor 50

Investing in a good sun care product is really important. It’s something I’ve learnt not to skimp on and finding the right sun cream product that works for you is really important in protecting your skin. Spend time trying out a few and see which one works best for your skin type. Stick to high factor products and don’t forget to re-apply the cream throughout the day.


I’ve been prescribed antihistamines and creams to help on some of the hottest days. I often forget to take this out with me so it’s a good idea to use a makeup bag to keep in your handbag at all times in case you need any of the medication whilst you are out and about.


Life isn’t all that bad with a sun allergy, I just need to be aware of it whilst I’m out and about but I haven’t let it stop me having fun this summer!

This post was created in collaboration with L’Occitane

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