It usually starts with a little flushing on your cheeks and nose. Before you know it, that rosy hue has developed into full-fledged redness that covers half your face and your chest to boot.
Pimples spring up out of nowhere. Your skin gets bumpy. It feels like it’s on fire. And itches like crazy. What’s going on?
You’re having a rosacea flare-up. It’s a common skin condition that affects women (and men) of all ages. You’re not alone.
The bad news is there’s no cure. No one even knows what causes it.
The good news (yes, there is some!) is that it’s treatable. Once you figure out your triggers and give your skin what it needs to avoid future flare-ups, you can banish rosacea and get back the clear, glowy skin you deserve. Here’s how:
What Causes Rosacea?
Rosacea is an inflammatory skincare condition. This much we know.
Your body comes in contact with something it deems a potential threat and rings the alarm, triggering your immune system to react like you’re having an allergic reaction.
That’s what makes rosacea so frustrating. A flare-up can literally pop up at any time. You can be free of it for years and, all of a sudden, get a relapse.
Avoiding triggers AT ALL TIMES is a must. Especially if rosacea runs in your family. Genetics play a part here too so if your grannie or uncle has it, you’re more likely to get it, too...
Whatever the cause, the symptoms are the same:
- Redness on your face, scalp, chest, ears and, sometimes, eyes
- Persistent flushing
- Bumps and pimples (they can look like acne)
- Visible blood vessels
- Burning and stinging
- Dry skin
- Raised red patches (plaques)
What Are Common Rosacea Triggers?
Rosacea triggers vary from person to person. For example, a cup of hot tea may trigger another rosacea flare-up for you, but your friend with the same condition can drink all the hot tea she wants without the red monster turning up.
That’s why it pays off to know your triggers. Keep a skincare journal where you jot down how your skin reacts every day to minor stimuli and common triggers. It’s the easiest way to identify what causes problems for you.
Here are common rosacea triggers to be on the lookout for:
- Cold weather
- Harsh skincare products
- Heavy exercise
- Hot baths
- Hot drinks
- Hot weather
- Spicy foods
- Sun exposure
In a nutshell, if it makes you blush - avoid it!
How To Cope With Rosacea
- Care: choose skincare products free of common irritants like alcohol, sodium lauryl sulfate, citrus oils, mint extracts and fragrance. Start your skincare routine with a gentle cream or oil cleanser that doesn’t leave your skin feeling tight, use rich moisturizers loaded with antioxidants and anti-inflammatory ingredients that moisturize skin and reduce redness at the same time and exfoliate with salicylic acid (it has anti-inflammatory properties, too!).
- Eat Healthy: avoid spicy foods, hot drinks and anything else that may trigger another flare-up. Processed foods, sugar and dairy are often culprits, too. Instead, opt for anti-inflammatory foods that nourish your body and calm your skin at the same time. A few delicious options are almonds, fresh fruits, salmon and dark, leafy green vegetables.
- Protect: did you know that UV rays can penetrate through clouds and be reflected on snow? Always wear sunscreen every single day, come rain or shine. The best sunscreens use zinc oxide, a white mineral that protects from the entire UV spectrum without irritating skin. Our SPF 35 Age-Defying Mineral Sunscreen comes in tinted and non-tinted versions.
- Soothe: use skincare products loaded with anti-inflammatory ingredients like green tea and aloe vera. They calm down irritations and reduce redness. While you’re at it, don’t forget to soothe your mind, too. A walk in the park, a yoga session or 10 minutes of meditation help melt away stress and keep your immune system in relax mode.
- Treat: when all else fails, try medications like Finacea and Renovax. Consult your derm first as you need a prescription to use them.
Rosacea isn’t totally incurable. The key to coping with it is to reduce inflammation on all fronts: avoid triggers, soothe irritations and nourish your body with the right foods. Bye bye, rosacea!