Ever had persistent redness in your face that just doesn't go away? Or some pesky, red, small bumps that may be filled with pus? Or small blood vessels on your nose and cheeks start swelling up and becoming more visible? If so, you may be experiencing something called rosacea. It is a skin condition that is commonly misinterpreted as acne. These symptoms may flare up for weeks or even months but then subside. In more severe cases, some experience swelling and redness around the eye area or stinging when cleansing your face with water or other skincare products.
There are four main types of rosacea, according to the American Academy of Dermatology:
- Erythematotelangiectatic rosacea: Symptoms include skin discoloration, flushing, and visible blood vessels.
- Papulopustular rosacea: Symptoms include flushing, swelling, and breakouts that resemble acne.
- Phymatous rosacea: Symptoms include thickened, bumpy skin.
- Ocular rosacea: Symptoms include eye redness and irritation and swollen eyelids.
There is no exact cause of rosacea, sometimes it is hereditary but it can be triggered by environmental factors such as hot drinks, spicy foods, alcohol, extreme temperatures, harsh wind, hot showers and saunas, sunlight, exercise, dairy products, caffeine, certain ingredients in cosmetic products. Rosacea can affect anyone, but the likelihood of being diagnosed with it increases if you are female, above 30, have pale skin, have sun-damaged skin or if you smoke.
Below are some treatments to help you combat rosacea and reduce redness.
- Avoid rubbing or touching your face.
- Wash the face with a gentle cleanser such as Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser and The INKEY List Oat Cleansing Balm
- Avoid using products that contain fragrance or alcohol or any AHAs
- Try to use non-comedogenic products such as The Ordinary Squalane Cleanser
- Use skincare products with cica, hyaluronic acid, ceramides and aloe to help soothe and calm
- Keep the skin hydrated with a gentle moisturizer such as CeraVe Moisturising Cream and Dr.Jart+ Cicapair Calming Gel Cream
- Stay indoors!
- Try using mineral makeup
- Skip chemical peels, microdermabrasion treatments, and even your usual facials
- Try placing ice packs on your face to calm down inflammation
- Wear a broad-spectrum sunscreen such as CeraVe Hydrating Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF50 and La Roche-Posay Anthelios Invisible Ultra-Resistant Fluid SPF50+ Sunscreen
- In cold weather, protect the face with a scarf or ski mask
- Avoid foods and beverages that might trigger an outbreak such as spicy foods, dairy, alcohol and caffeine
- Avoid using steroid creams unless a doctor has prescribed them to you
- Use an electric shaver when shaving, as this is less likely to trigger flare-ups than a normal razor or wax strips