Treatments and tests

Caring for minor facial burn

Burns to the face can cause swelling in the first few days. It is very important for you to keep your face clean and well moisturised. This will prevent drying and cracking which will make you more uncomfortable. You may need to take pain medication prior to starting your face care.

  • Wash your face carefully as directed. This may be more than once a day for the first 1 to 2 days after your burn injury. You should gently wash off all the ointment that is on your skin. This will help remove the dry skin and crusts that may have formed. Use a simple non-perfumed soap. Gently pat dry with a clean towel.
  • Men should shave every day to remove dead skin and crusts that will collect in the beard. This will help reduce the risk of infection to your burn.
  • Apply a smear of lanolin or emollient ointment to all burn areas.
  • Pay attention to the eye area, applying eye ointment if prescribed, to the eyes or eyelids.
  • Take special care of the ears and nose.
  • After eating or drinking, apply an oily cream such as lanolin to the lips to prevent them from cracking. This helps to reduce the risk of infection and make you feel more comfortable.
  • If your face is swollen, sleeping with more than one pillow can help reduce this.
  • Avoid using makeup on your face burn or newly healed face burn as it may irritate the area.


State Burns Service, Fiona Stanley Hospital

This publication is provided for education and information purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional medical care. Information about a therapy, service, product or treatment does not imply endorsement and is not intended to replace advice from your healthcare professional. Readers should note that over time currency and completeness of the information may change. All users should seek advice from a qualified healthcare professional for a diagnosis and answers to their medical questions.

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