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Despite rosacea affecting around one in every 10 people in the UK, this common skin condition often gets misdiagnosed or treated with the wrong products.
This is because flushed, red skin can happen for a number of reasons, and can easily be brushed off as the result of overusing harsh skincare formulas, or perhaps as a bit of contact dermatitis.
But what really is rosacea, and how do you tell it apart from other skin concerns?
“It’s a common inflammatory skin condition that causes redness of the face, flushing or blushing (often in the cheek area), acne-like spots, and sometimes visible blood vessels,” explains Dr Anjali Mahto, consultant dermatologist at Skin55.
“These symptoms may flare up for weeks or months at a time, and then go away for a while. Though the cause of the condition isn’t exactly known, it’s thought it could be due to a combination of genetics and environmental factors,” continues Dr Mahto.
Rosacea flare-ups can be brought on by spicy or hot foods, red wine, exercise and extreme weather conditions – though there’s no exact hard and fast rule, and different people will have different triggers.
Anyone can develop rosacea, but it’s most common in females over the age of 30, with light skin tones.
Can I get rid of it?
It’s a chronic condition and can be controlled but not cured. Coming up with a treatment plan involves a combination of lifestyle factors including skincare, light and laser therapies and camouflage techniques (make-up).
“Use products that are fragrance-free and minimalistic. Complex multi-step routines, acids, exfoliators, menthol and witch hazel can all be common triggers so are best avoided,” advises Dr Mahto.
Shop our top rosacea-fighting products
Bioderma Hydrabio Hydrating Micellar Water Reverse Pump, usually £19.50 here
A micellar formula like this is perfect for use on rosacea-prone skin, as it gently lifts away make-up and dirt without causing redness or irritation.
It usually costs nearly £20, you can snap up a full 500ml bottle in this month’s OK! skincare heroes Beauty Box, from just £7.50* here. Plus you get four other gorgeous products, with a total box value of over £80.
La Roche-Posay Toleriane Sensitive Fluid, £16.50 here
Dr Mahto recommends this daily serum for its anti-inflammatory action. It also works to repair and protect the skin barrier.
CeraVe Facial Moisturising Lotion, £13 here
A lightweight daily lotion to help reduce redness and help skin retain moisture.
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Dr. Jart+ Cicapair Tiger Grass Color Correcting Treatment, £12 here
This colour correcting moisturiser has gone viral on social media, with many rosacea sufferers claiming it helps reduce the flushed look of their complexions.
Supergoop! Mattescreen SPF40, £33 here
“Over 80% of those who suffer with rosacea will find their facial redness is made worse by UV light,” says Dr Mahto. “Opt for a mineral sunscreen over a chemical one as this is less likely to cause sensitivity and irritation.”
We love this one as it doesn’t have the chalky finish sometimes found with mineral formulas.
*when you sign up to a one-month rolling subscription.
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