Spring is upon us, which translates to warmer weather, longer days, and, of course, hours spent outdoors. It's what the universe owes us after forcing us to stay indoors (or beneath multiple layers of clothing) all winter long. But although the living is easy, there are still things that can cramp your style—like poison ivy, mosquito bites, sunburns, and...margarita-induced rashes.
This is not a drill. Your summer sip of choice really can cause a rash. The American Academy of Dermatology recently released an announcement warning unsuspecting people of phytophotodermatitis, a kind of Skin irritation that results from a combination of citrus fruits and (what else?) sun exposure. To clear, the skin irritation and resulting hyperpigmentation isn't just from sipping. It's only problematic when the citrus juice gets spilled on your skin, and then activated by the sun's ultraviolet rays. So if you've sloshed your margarita or lemonade onto your hands or arms—hey, party fouls happen—you may be at risk of accidentally giving yourself a red, itchy rash.
"Margaritas are a big culprit," says Elizabeth Hale, a dermatologist at CompleteSkinMD in New York City. "Most common are beach bartenders with lime juice and young women using lemons to 'naturally' lighten their Hair." Because they're so damn refreshing in the summer, lemons and limes are the biggest offenders (although, weirdly enough, carrot has this effect, too). That's why Hale recommends washing your hands well after handling the fruits. And, of course, sunscreen—and diligent application and reapplication after eating or drinking citrus or carrots—helps, too. Can we just pause for a minute to appreciate this revelation. A margarita could give you a skin rash—and it's very real science.
If you happen to feel or notice a rash coming on, Hale suggests applying a neutral healing ointment like the 20 percent glycerin of Restore Healing Balm—and if you can't deal with the itching, try a hydrocortisone cream. Whatever you do, a generous sunscreen application afterwards is a must, since the rash is typically followed by post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (a.k.a. dark spots). Ain't nobody got time for that, especially since hyperpigmentation is illustriously hard to zap.
This story originally appeared on Allure.
More from Allure:
10 Celebrity Hairstyles That Make You Look 10 Years Younger
Find the Best Haircut for Your Face Shape
The 9 Prettiest Date-Night Makeup Looks
7 Weird Tricks Stars Use for Looking Great in Photos
The 6 Prettiest Haircuts for Long Hair
The 10 Best Mascaras Under $20