[ suhn-burn ]
See synonyms for: sunburnsunburnedsunburnt on

  1. inflammation of the skin caused by overexposure to the sun or a sunlamp.

verb (used with or without object),sun·burned or sun·burnt, sun·burn·ing.
  1. to affect or be affected with sunburn: An hour in the sun sunburned me severely. I sunburn easily.

Origin of sunburn

First recorded in 1520–30; sun + burn1

Other words from sunburn

  • un·sun·burned, adjective
  • un·sun·burnt, adjective
  • well-sunburned, adjective
  • well-sunburnt, adjective

Words Nearby sunburn Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

How to use sunburn in a sentence

  • The SunSprite has a UV sensor, which warns you when the rays get intense enough to cause sunburn.

  • Here's one way to avoid a sunburn: wear a Face-Kini next time you're on the beach.

  • His complexion was so reddened and darkened by sunburn that his untanned forehead looked unnaturally white and delicate.

    Overland | John William De Forest
  • His teeth were clenched; his face, through the sunburn, livid; the blue of his eyes seemed to have faded into an ashen grey.

    With Edged Tools | Henry Seton Merriman
  • The other had gone quite white, or at any rate as white as his bronze sunburn would allow.

    Forging the Blades | Bertram Mitford
  • Bart wondered, suddenly and worriedly, about the effects of green sunburn on his chemically altered skin tone.

    The Colors of Space | Marion Zimmer Bradley
  • His nose was peeled from sunburn, but his round and rubicund face fairly oozed good humour.

    Isle o' Dreams | Frederick F. Moore

British Dictionary definitions for sunburn


/ (ˈsʌnˌbɜːn) /

  1. inflammation of the skin caused by overexposure to the sun: Technical name: erythema solare

  2. another word for suntan

Derived forms of sunburn

  • sunburnt or sunburned, adjective

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012