According to the National Rosacea Society, more than 16 million Americans suffer from rosacea. That statistic already sounds astronomical, but when you learn that it equates to 1 in 20 people, chances are good that you or someone you care about is living with the condition. The causes of rosacea are still unknown, but according to Dr. Amy Paul, chronic inflammation is most likely to blame, but other factors play a role.
Rosacea is more common among fair-skinned people, and its symptoms range from redness due to inflamed blood vessels (Erythematotelangiectatic rosacea) to blemishes (Papulopustular rosacea) to skin thickening and textural changes (Phymatous rosacea). In our ongoing commitment to bring attention to rosacea this month, we’ve compiled a three-part series that features tips to help you minimize rosacea’s effects on your skin.
Simplify Your Routine
Despite what advertisers would have us believe, more isn’t always better. Be it diet, exercise, or skincare, the more moving parts you have in your routine, the more potential problems you may experience. If your skincare routine has too many products, it can be difficult to know what is triggering your rosacea. To get your skin back under control, go back to the basics. Cleanse, moisturize, and protect. Once you have those products perfected, slowly begin adding things back into your regimen. If your rosacea flares up, you’ll be better able to identify (and avoid) that product or ingredient in the future.
Turn Down the Heat
While a hot shower or soak in the tub may sound relaxing, high temperatures can trigger rosacea and make it worse. Your exercise habits may also play a role in its severity, especially if you favor high intensity workouts that significantly increase your body temperature. In a study funded by the National Rosacea Society, researchers learned that “rosacea symptoms may be in part due to sympathetic nerve overactivity.” This, in turn, increases the heart rate and triggers perspiration, so it’s best to opt for low impact exercise, like walking or swimming. You should also reduce the temperature in your shower as well.
Avoid Certain Skincare Ingredients
It’s not always easy to pick products that will do the job without aggravating your skin. Potential irritants are everywhere, but one of the biggest offenders in skincare is alcohol. Before you panic and throw out every product you own that lists alcohol on the label, familiarize yourself with the various types first. Fatty alcohols, like cetearyl alcohol, are emollients. They bind with water and soothe the skin. While you’re reading labels, you should also avoid using products on your face that contain fragrance. Many scents are made up of numerous compounds, and fragrances can cause both irritation and allergic reactions, especially if your skin is already sensitive. Whenever possible, choose “fragrance-free” options instead of “unscented” ones, which may contain scent-blocking ingredients. Those compounds are often just as irritating as fragrance itself.
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At Reflect Skin, we have aesthetic industry insiders as well as a board-certified plastic surgeon and dermatologist on our team. We’re constantly monitoring and researching the newest skincare products on the market, so we’ll recommend a few in part two of this rosacea series as a way of helping you cut through all the clutter. If you have questions about rosacea or any other skincare-related concern, just ask us! We’ll also be happy to help you create the perfect routine for your skin’s needs. Just take our quick skincare quiz to get started.
To managing rosacea,
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