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Will Soy Sauce Cool Your Burn?

Many readers have found that splashing soy sauce on a burn after treating the injury with cold water makes a great remedy to take away the pain.
Will Soy Sauce Cool Your Burn?
Healthy beetroot smoothie mixing in a blender isolated

Lifting a lid or grabbing a pan are opportunities to get burned. On the other hand, cooking is a pleasure as well as a means to eat well and control your own diet. So rather than avoid the kitchen, make sure you stock it with one of our favorite burn remedies: soy sauce. First aid for a burn calls for cold water on the skin immediately. Many readers report (and we agree) that taking the next step of putting this salty condiment on the burned area can ease the pain.

Hot Soup Splashed Out of the Blender:

Q. I was blending boiling hot soup. The blender cover has a removable cap in the center that was off (dumb!). I had my hand on the lid when I turned on the blender, and the soup splashed through the hole and burned my hand.

I immediately put the hand in cold water, but since I had to go on cooking, I wiped my very painful, red palm off and applied soy sauce. Thanks to The People’s Pharmacy for that home remedy! I reapplied the soy sauce several times because I could still feel the burn.

Then I forgot about it entirely. The soy sauce took all of the burning and redness away. I surely would have had a large, extremely painful blister had it not been for that.

Soy Sauce to Soothe a Burn:

A. Thank you for sharing your success. Hot soup in a blender has caused many burns. However, quite a few readers report that cold soy sauce can ease the pain and redness from a household burn.

One important caution: A severe burn should have NOTHING applied to it other than cold water before seeking immediate medical attention.

Other Readers Report Success:

Here is what another reader had to say:

Q. One night I burned my hand, which produced big white blisters on four fingers. I doused my hand with soy sauce and wrapped my fingers in paper towels soaked in soy sauce. Then I slid a baggie over my hand, secured it with a rubber band and went to bed.

I’m used to stopping the pain of a burn with soy sauce, but when I took the baggie off my hand about 3:00 am, the blisters had disappeared. I’m curious about what happened: did the salt pull the fluid from the blisters and allow the surface skin to reattach to the fingertips?

I was amazed that the next morning I had full use of my hand, though the fingertips were slightly sensitive. I can tell by the smooth texture of my fingertips that the dead tissue will probably slough off, but what an effective burn treatment!

The Power of Soy Sauce for Kitchen Burns:

A. Like you, we have been impressed with the power of soy sauce for kitchen burns. Many people report that it eases pain and prevents blisters.

We’ve never heard that it could make blisters go away as yours did. The mechanism remains mysterious. Your hypothesis is as plausible as any we have encountered.

If you would like to watch us demonstrate how to ease the pain of a burn with soy sauce, you’ll find a video in this post.

Joan wrote:

“Many times I have used soy sauce to relieve the pain and blisters of a burn. It works very well. If I have just had a cup of tea and the tea bag is handy and wet this will also work.”

Bob agreed:

“Soy sauce has been a great aid in reducing or totally eliminating the issues of a burn. I tried other remedies but for me soy sauce works the best and works immediately. Unlike untreated burns, after using soy sauce there is no evidence of the burn a day later. Great remedy!”

So did Lynda:

“I have burned my fingers several times. They were red and sore. I put a little soy sauce on them and the burning sensation and the redness disappeared almost immediately. I thank People’s Pharmacy for that remedy.

Other Home Remedies for Burns:

Aloe Vera:

Some people swear by aloe vera gel. Not everyone keeps an aloe plant in the house where they can easily break off a leaf and squeeze the gel onto a burn. Some people tell us they keep aloe vera gel in the fridge where it is handy to treat a kitchen burn, after cooling it under water, of course.


Readers occasionally write that they prefer using vanilla extract rather than soy sauce. It must be genuine vanilla, not a synthetic flavoring. Vanilla is costlier than soy sauce, but if it works, we can’t complain. Remember to put any burn into cold water first!

Yellow Mustard:

Another remedy that seems to help soothe the pain of a burn is yellow mustard. After the cold water treatment, people apply yellow mustard straight out of the fridge to the burned area. This seems to work just as well as treating a burn with soy sauce.

Sue remarked:

“Yellow mustard right from the refrigerator works well for me when I burn my fingers.”


Some readers have used honey to soothe the pain of a burn after the initial cold water treatment. Here are their reports.

Debbie said:

“Honey is excellent for stopping the burn. I hit the top of my fingers on the upper element of my oven and sustained white blistered burns on then. Grabbed the honey and as it dripped off added more. That evening when I took a hot bath, the hot water didn’t even make the burns sting or burn more.”

Linda also likes to use honey on burns:

“I use natural, raw honey for burns. Apply to the burn and then wrap overnight. It alleviates pain and the skin doesn’t blister. I have no idea why it works but it does. My father-in-law was a beekeeper and his family always treated burns with honey. I thought it was weird until I burned my fingertips on the oven rack… ouch! Applied the honey, wrapped a bandage on the fingers and the next day, no blisters, no pain. Amazing.”

6/17/19 redirected to: https://www.peoplespharmacy.com/2019/06/17/will-soy-sauce-ease-your-burn-pain/

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About the Author
Terry Graedon, PhD, is a medical anthropologist and co-host of The People’s Pharmacy radio show, co-author of The People’s Pharmacy syndicated newspaper columns and numerous books, and co-founder of The People’s Pharmacy website. Terry taught in the Duke University School of Nursing and was an adjunct assistant professor in the Department of Anthropology. She is a Fellow of the Society of Applied Anthropology. Terry is one of the country's leading authorities on the science behind folk remedies. .
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