That next cocktail could burn you – literally

I spent a long time in Mexico this past winter. My wife and I traveled to Play Del Carmen and stayed there for months while she completed some rigourous scuba instructor training. While she was in the water, which was most days, I stayed ashore to write, drink and nosh. Many a chilled beverage was had on beach front patios (I was there for the WiFi, honest.) I squeezed lemons and limes into my drinks. They were amazingly fresh–like nothing I'd ever had up north. Apparently, I dodged a number of bullets.

From The CBC:

On a sunny day in June, Amber Prepchuk spent an afternoon by the lake making margaritas for a group of friends. The following morning she ended up with much more than she bargained for — a painful side effect entirely unrelated to tequila.

"I can handle pain, but I woke the next morning and I was in pain. I was crying my eyes out." she told CBC's Radio Active. "I was covered in little blisters."

Amber Prepchuk… learned the hard way the meaning of 'margarita burn,' when she juiced limes in the sun and the next morning woke up with blisters all over her hands.


Margarita burn. Never heard the tell of that. So, I looked it up. Oh my stars and garters.

Margarita burn, better known as margarita photodermatitis, is a condition which occurs in folks who are exposed to a photo-sensitizing agent (lime juice, for example,) and ultraviolet light (ye olde sunlight.) According to Wikipedia, those dinged by Margarita burn will notice the first symptoms of the ailment within 24 hours of exposure to the photo-sensitizing agent that they came into contact with and ultraviolet light. It'll feel like a tingle and then, a burn. The skin in the afflicted area turns dark and can, in extreme cases, can even turn black. You'll enjoy incredibly painful blisters of the sort one might see with a second or third-degree burn. I mean look at this shit:

The scars and discoloration from a bout of margarita burn can last for months or even years before they start to fade. All because you wanted a damn lime in your drink.

Cocktails aren't for the timid, friends.

Images via Pixnio and Wikipedia