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- If you have rosacea, it can be difficult to create a skin care routine.
- We asked dermatologists to explain how to develop a safe and effective skin care regimen for people with rosacea.
- These tips and product recommendations will help you take control of your skin condition.
Perfecting a skin care routine can be quite difficult to navigate. With the amount of advice going around, the names of complex ingredients to try to pronounce, and the sheer number of products available, it’s hard to know exactly what you’re looking for. Add rosacea to the mix, and it can make the idea of developing a skin care routine even more intimidating. But with the help of the best dermatologists, finding a basic diet when you have rosacea is easier than you might think. It’s always important to go for a diagnosis first, but if you’re not sure who to turn to, we asked the experts everything you need to know about a suitable rosacea skin care routine.
What is rosacea?
Rosacea is a common, but often misdiagnosed, chronic inflammatory skin disease. Alia Ahmed, MD, psychodermatologist and consultant for the NHS and Get harley, said POPSUGAR that rosacea is generally subdivided into the following categories: erythema-telangectatic, papulopustular, ocular, phymatous, granulomatous, and neurogenic, all of which can be diagnosed by a dermatologist.
Although everyone experiences rosacea differently, common symptoms include: redness (often affecting the forehead, nose, cheeks and chin), bumps and pustules, broken capillaries, flushing, burning sensation, swelling of the face caused by inflammation and feeling of dryness of the skin.
In darker skin tones, where the early symptoms of rosacea can sometimes go unnoticed, look for acne-like rashes, burning or stinging when applying skin care products, and rather than redness, look for dark spots on the skin, as well as dryness. “Seeing a professional will help you confirm the diagnosis and avoid irritation that can potentially lead to long-term post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation in dark skin.” Amiee Vyas, MD, aesthetic doctor, consultant for Get harley, and co-founder of the Black Skin Advisory Board, noted.
There are a number of common rosacea triggers to watch out for, including alcohol, temperature extremes, sun exposure, spicy foods, exercise, and psychological factors like stress.
It is not known exactly what causes rosacea, we do know that it is an “inflammatory condition associated with an alteration of the skin barrier and colonization by microorganisms,” explained Dr Vyas. While there is no cure for the disease, it is manageable with the right avoidance of triggers and treatment through skin care and sometimes oral medication.
How to Create a Skin Care Routine If You Have Rosacea
When you have rosacea, tailoring your skin care routine to your specific needs can be the key to managing it. If you suspect you have rosacea or have recently been diagnosed, when it comes to a new skin care routine, Lauren Hamilton, MD, cosmetic doctor and founder of Victor & Garth, told POPSUGAR that “less is more”. And Dr Vyas echoed that and recommended cutting your skincare routine right away.
Experts all agree that starting with a gentle, soothing cleanser, followed by a light moisturizer, and ending with mineral SPF in the morning is a great place to start. Until you get your condition under control, “avoid strong active ingredients (such as alpha-hydroxy acids and beta-hydroxy acids) and products that contain alcohol or perfume,” Dr. Vyas said. . “On top of that, you can add antimicrobial products to protect yourself from microorganisms.” This will help to minimize irritation as much as possible that could further compromise your skin barrier.
Ingredients to watch out for if you have rosacea
If you’re looking for specific ingredients in your skin care products that can help ease your rosacea symptoms, a good rule of thumb is to keep an eye out for anything that can help restore skin barrier function. “Ingredients like glycerin and hyaluronic acid will rehydrate your skin, while ceramides will retain moisture and help your skin barrier,” Dr. Hamilton said.
Once you’ve settled your skin and worked on repairing your barrier, with expert help, you may want to look for slightly stronger ingredients that target other rosacea symptoms. Brimonidine gel and oxymetazoline hydrochloride have been shown to help relieve redness, Dr. Hamilton explained. Topical azelaic acid (which you can buy with or without a prescription depending on the percentage of strength) is effective for people with red or pus-filled bumps present in inflammatory rosacea. Dr Vyas agrees, adding that antioxidants and polyhydroxy acids can also help with gentle exfoliation as they are the least irritating of all hydroxy acids.
Using sunscreen is important if you have rosacea
There is a skin care product that is an absolute must for everyone, and it’s sunscreen. But, if you have rosacea, you will need to stay on top of wearing it. even more. Wearing sunscreen with a minimum of SPF 30 all day, every day, is one of the best ways to protect your skin from sun damage as well as potential triggers for a rosacea flare. (since sunlight is a well-known trigger for rosacea flare-ups). “UV rays can damage blood vessels (by breaking down the supporting collagen and elastin in the blood vessels) contributing to the symptoms of redness and flushing associated with rosacea,” said Dr Ahmed.
Experts generally recommend using a mineral sunscreen rather than a chemical one, as the ingredients used in chemical formulas tend to irritate sensitive skin like those with rosacea. The ingredients in a mineral sunscreen contain zinc oxide and titanium dioxide, which tend to be better tolerated by people with sensitive skin. Sonia khorana, a general practitioner (with a particular interest in dermatology) and cosmetic doctor in the West Midlands, also recommended using a mineral SPF if you are prone to rash.
What skin care products should a person with rosacea potentially avoid?
“Don’t be overzealous with physical exfoliation practices (eg using washcloths or rough scrubs),” Dr Ahmed said. “Avoid products with a strong scent as they can sometimes cause skin reactions and make rosacea worse.” Once you have a better understanding of the triggers, you will be able to determine if the scent is right for you or not. “Other changes to consider would be to use water-based makeup and oil-free moisturizers,” Dr. Hamilton said.
That said, while many dermatologists suggest products and treatments that work with rosacea, it’s worth noting that many of them also live by the motto (As dermatologist Ranella Hirsch said): “If you are happy with your skin care, ignore what IG says.” There are products that experts recommend avoiding if you have rosacea, but if you have rosacea and one of those products works for you, then you do.
A note on prescription products and rosacea
Often times, rosacea is treated with prescription products, however, as there are different types of rosacea, treatment for each varies widely, with some improving with regular skin care products and others requiring. medical treatments such as oral antibiotics and laser treatment, Dr. Hamilton explained. If you are suffering from mild rosacea, it may be suggested to manage your symptoms first without prescription products and instead by identifying triggers and using skin care products designed to strengthen the skin barrier and reduce irritation. If you have symptoms affecting your eyes, Dr Vyas said it is imperative that you see your GP as this could be a sign of ocular rosacea.
In short: when it comes to skin care for people with rosacea, Dr. Vyas simply said, keep the routine short and sweet. And try to visit a GP or dermatologist for personalized expert advice if you can. Buy dermatologist-recommended skin care products for rosacea in advance.