What is Rosacea?

Rosacea can be best described as persistent inflammation and redness of the facial skin. It is not contagious but can be quite distressing to the sufferer. It can be mild such as broken blood vessels to quite severe. In its more severe forms it can be accompanied by flaking, dry skin or even acne.

Although it is more common in Caucasian people and may have a genetic component the severity of rosacea appears to be linked with diet and environmental factors. Alcohol and spicy foods are a no-no, and can make rosacea worse. Skin with rosacea also needs to be cared for in a particular way.

Never use any peels, scrubs or dermabrasion products and only ever clean the skin with gentle wash cloths or with your finger tips. Choose very gentle products that have soothing or cooling properties. Products containing aloe vera may be a good choice for calming the skin. La Roche-posay make a line of cleansers and creams called ‘Rosaliac’ , I’ve found their gel cleanser to be the best kind for calming my skin if it’s red but I’m sure there are lots of other good products to use. Gentle, natural cleansers are also recommended.

Causes: Although the causes of rosacea are not completely certain it appears to be influenced by both internal and external processes. Sunburn or extreme cold and persistent flushing of the skin can result in rosacea. It has also been linked to intestinal bacteria and certain foods that make your skin flushed like chili, caffeine and alcohol. In some cases rosacea can be caused by cosmetic procedures such as chemical peels. Because of this it is best to avoid these abrasive types of treatments all together. Instead, try to improve circulation to the skin with exercise and good diet.

Also, avoid the sun as sun exposure and damage will make any redness worse. A little bit of sun light at dawn is okay to reset your circadian clock for the day, but never more than a couple of minutes.

Skin care for rosacea should not contain anything that will irritate the skin. Gentle, natural and organic products without any irritating essential oils in them should be used. There are some exceptions to this, that might be good for rosacea. Never wash your face with hot water, only ever luke warm and never rub the skin. Pat dry with a clean towel rather than rub. Also if you use a wash cloth to remove cleanser do not rub but rather dab the product off in gentle swipes. Never ever have chemical peals or use any acid based products.

Make-up Some people may want to cover roasea with make up. If you do this at least make sure to choose a moisturizing type of foundation or a mineral make up with sun protection. Chemical sunscreens are not recommended for rosacea so opt for a mineral based one instead. The best kind of make up for rosacea by far is mineral make up so try it if you haven’t already. Not only will it mask red skin it may actually also help improve it. Always be sure to completely remove all makeup before going to bed.

I recommend a gentle wipe off cleanser like Bioderma H20 Crealine but there are others that should be suitable too. Also, last but not least drink plenty of water to keep your skin hydrated.

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