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Notes On…Rosacea

A common concern I often see in my Studios is Rosacea. Often many of us don’t even realise we have it – which is only made more trying by the fact that the condition itself is so vaguely understood and that it can be so difficult to diagnose in the first place. Unlike typical sensitivity-based redness, Rosacea presents as persistent inflammation, enlarged capillaries, visible blood vessels, bumps and pustules and in extreme cases, textural irregularities and swelling mainly through the centre of the face. It presents predominantly in Caucasian women between the ages of 30 and 50, but can appear in anyone, regardless of age or gender. Flare ups may be brought about by a multitude of factors – from diet, to subtle variations in climate, hormonal fluctuations (menstruation, pregnancy, menopause) and stress – and while it can be uncomfortable both physically and emotionally for those who are struggling with it, there are a few ways you can manage your symptoms and prevent their frequency and severity.

Rosacea Dos
✔ Seek advice from your Skin Therapist or Dermatologist – diagnoses is the first step
✔ Avoid excessively hot baths, saunas, facial steaming and overly strenuous exercise
✔ Be mindful of food based triggers – chilli, dairy, citrus and alcohol are among the worst culprits
✔ Maintain consistency with your home regime – keep it simple with Peptides, Hyaluronic Acid, anti-inflammatory Vitamin Bs and Zinc. I also like Calendula, Chamomile, Aloe and Green Tea Extract
✔ Incorporate a really good quality Vitamin C based serum, slowly and steadily. Vitamin C has been shown to strengthen the complexion while shielding against free radicals – Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate is a gentle and stable form here

Rosacea Don’ts
❌ Go hard and heavy with scrubs and exfoliants. An enzyme or AHA-based liquid exfoliant 2 x per week in the evenings will suffice
❌ Use products containing synthetic fragrances, mineral oils or even essential oils. These can all be agitating to compromised skins
❌ Leave the house without SPF – ever. Sun exposure can exacerbate symptoms, so look for a broad spectrum physical, zinc-based SPF for best results
❌ Use over the counter topical steroids unless absolutely necessary. Your skin can build a tolerance to these, making it harder to manage in the long term
❌ Over cleanse. Avoid foaming surfactants and alcohol-based cleansers that strip the acid mantle. Instead, reach for nourishing milks and replenishing oil cleansers, morning and evening

In terms of treatments, I’ve seen great results with regular LED Light Therapy – either in Studio or at home. LED is particularly beneficial at reducing inflammation, promoting hydration and stimulating collagen and elastin for a firmer more resilient complexion; it also keeps redness at bay. IPL and laser ( YAG, Pulsed Dye) are also excellent options for yielding long term results by targeting dilated blood vessels and modulating future flushing. I recommend a course of conservative treatments in close succession for best results.