Facing up to Rosacea!

Rosacea causes flushing, redness, and bumps across the nose, cheeks, chin, and forehead. It usually strikes after age 30 and affects more women than men. It tends to flare in response to certain triggers, like sun exposure or emotional stress

Do you suffer from really sensitive skin?

Are you prone to blushing and flushing?

Does your skin sting when you apply your moisturiser?

Have you noticed that your rosy cheeks stay rosier for longer after exercise?

Have you spots on your cheeks that just won’t go away?

You may have a condition called Rosacea

What is Rosacea?

The medical term is called “Rosacea Acne”. Rosacea is an inflammatory skin condition that presents itself as Redness on the cheeks, forehead, nose and chin.  It’s very common and is often mistaken for acne. Presently there is no known cause for Rosacea but it is linked to genetic and hereditary connections. If you have a family member who has Rosacea it is likely that you will have it too. Any skin type can show signs of Rosacea but a “Diffused Redness/Dry/Sensitive” skin type will most certainly be more vulnerable to experiencing the first signs of Rosacea.

Let’s recap a little for those of you who haven’t watched my video on skin types. There are only three true skin types which are referred to as “Intrinsic Skin Type”

Diffuses Redness, Acne/ Oily, and Lipid Dry

Whatever your skin type it cannot be changed. It is the skin type we are born with and no product or treatment will change it. But “Skin Condition”…Ahhh here is where the skin lets  us know in no uncertain terms how its coping with how we are taking care of it.

Skin Condition is a result of how we take care of our skin. From the products we use to protecting it from the environment to diet and lifestyle.

So if you are born with the skin type “Diffused Redness” you already have a 90% risk of developing Rosacea now or later in life.

So like I said previously Rosacea is very common but it’s the severity of the Rosacea that is so damaging to our skin but also to our self esteem and our confidence.  As you all know I feel very strongly about prevention when it relates to all skin health.  So let’s look at Rosacea in a little more depth.

 

So let’s explore Rosacea. I like to divide it into three categories.

  1. Dryness and Sensitivity (Skin Barrier breakdown)
  2. Spots with red raised areas and slight swelling (Inflammation)
  3. Flushing and Redness (Blood vessels and broken capillaries)

Dryness and Sensitivity.

  • Rosy cheeks that you have always had suddenly got a little rosier!
  • The skin is starting to flush more often and taking longer to go down
  • Redness that looks like sunburn
  • Skin becomes more sensitive. It stings or burns when you use face creams
  • Small tiny blood vessels become more noticeable
  • Dull dry appearance of the skin

 

Inflammation (Raised areas of redness)

  • Mainly present on the cheeks, forehead and chin.
  • There may be raised spots (Papules) that look like acne but are more nodular but no blackheads or pustules present. Sometimes they can even look like watery blisters.
  • Skin will be sore and irritated
  • Flushing and Redness (Blood vessels and broken capillaries)
  • Skin around the inflamed areas may look and feel wet

 

Approx 82% of clients that show signs of Rosacea have an impaired barrier function. The first protective layer of our skin barrier is called the PH. On the surface of our skin we have a jungle of bacteria that live quiet happily. They feed off the oil and debris that the skin produces and they excrete a serum called the PH that protects our skin from invading bacteria by producing our acid mantle.

The second protective layer is called the Stratum Corneum or our “Dead Skin cells”. How we take care of our skin through good skin care, diet and lifestyle determines the quality of our skin cells when they reach the surface of the skin to become our protective layer.

The third layer of barrier defense, are the oils that are secreted when the skin cell becomes flattened and forms cement that secures skin cells together. A good intact skin barrier is what protects our internal world from our external environment. When this delicate balance is compromised the skin becomes leaky and vulnerable to impurities entering through the skin.

Why this is important to my blog about Rosacea is because when the skin is not balanced and in good health it makes it more challenging to treat Rosacea.

Knowing how to manage your Rosacea is the key to keeping it from becoming a serious problem. Catching it early and recognising the visual signs is the key to preventing this skin condition from becoming a real serious problem in later life.  So we are going to look at all the dos and don’ts regarding Rosacea.

“If your Skin Care product burns, stings or makes the skin red it’s not good”

What does Rosacea skin care Routine look Like?

  • Cleansing: A gently soap free cleanser that has ingredients that can hydrate the skin as its dissolving impurities from the surface

 

  • Exfoliating: Enzymatic exfoliaters or exfoliaters with Lactic acid are more gently although exfoliating is not always recommended for some inflamed types of Rosacea.

 

  • Ingredients such as Ceramides, glycerine, Hyaluronic acid and Niacamide are all helpful in treating Rosacea skin.

 

  • UV protection: UV is responsible for 80% of skin cell aging. It is a vital part of a skin care programme for Rosacea skin.

Know your Triggers!

Keeping a diary for your triggers will be really helpful in indentifying your own individual triggers. Managing your own individual triggers keeps the skin calm and balanced. It’s the flare-ups that aggravate the blood vessels to dilate and constrict making your Rosacea more sensitive to triggers.

What skin care ingredients create positive changes in a Rosacea Skin?

Niacamide (anti-inflammatory + Improves skin barrier function)

 

Glycerine: A natural humectant or a skin-conditioner. Glycerin keeps your skin hydrated, soft and supple. It also protects your skin from harmful environmental aggressors, while improving its texture. Glycerin also treats several skin disorders, ranging from dry skin to wound healing.

 

Ceramides: People with rosacea need extra moisture, since the condition weakens the outer (and protective) skin barrier.  Ceramides are a class of fatty acids called lipids. They’re naturally found in skin cells and make up about 50 percent of the outer layer of skin (epidermis). Ceramindes  help form a protective layer on the skin.

 

Hyaluroinic Acid: Hyaluronic acid is produced naturally by skin cells to help them retain moisture, and it performs the same function in skin care products. Since rosacea sufferers often have impaired moisture barrier function, moisturizers containing hyaluronic acid are especially helpful

Titanium Dioxide

Zinc Oxide

Borage Seed Oil will treat all kinds of skin inflammation including eczema, dermatitis, psoriasis and Rosacea. If you’re just feeling dry, you’ll love its calming, nourishing effects. It’s also useful in helping calm acne and it’s lighter than many other oils so won’t leave your face feeling greasy.

Primrose Oil: also very powerful for fighting inflammation and eczema, dermatitis, psoriasis acne and Rosacea. However it has the additional benefits of helping with hot flashes and high blood pressure, PMS symptoms.

 

There are some specific skin care ingredients that will really help with the inflammation of Rosacea but the first priority always is to look at how you are taking care of your skin daily to protect and create an intact healthy skin barrier. For the first stage of Rosacea (skin Dryness and sensitivity) this is often enough to keep the skin from advancing to a more inflamed state. So a good skin care routine with good quality products is a really good start to creating good skin health.

 

“Knowing how to manage your Rosacea is the best way to learn how to live with it”

FAQ

Most frequent questions and answers

Some triggers may include the following

  • Sun Exposure
  • Exercise
  • Harsh poor quality skin care products
  • Harsh exfoliation on the skin
  • Heat from Sauna or Steam room
  • Spicy foods
  • Stress
  • Poor Sleep
  • Hot or cold envoirnments
  • Alcohol
  • Hot Baths
  • Hormonal monthly changes
  • Hot drinks
  • Food allergies or intolerances
  • Overactive Thyroid
  • Fragrances
  • Alcohol
  • Witch Hazel
  • Avobenzone
  • Mentol
  • Peppermint
  • Salicylic Acid
  • Glycolic Acid
  • Eucalyptus Oil / Clove Oil

Yes Antibiotics are used to treat Rosacea. Their use is to reduce inflammation in the skin that Rosacea creates.

Drinking water helps wash out toxins that otherwise clog your skin. Rosacea tip: Stay hydrated. Choose icy water to cool your system and keep blood vessels from dilating, the reason behind your red skin

Vitamin C is a rockstar ingredient when it comes to helping to manage Rosacea. It helps to strengthen capillaries (fewer broken capillaries = less noticeable redness). It helps bring down general redness too, both topically and when ingested.

Coffee has previously been seen as a trigger for Rosacea because the heat from the beverages consumed can induce symptom flares. Also coffee is a diuretic and affects the hydration levels of the skin. However the polyphenols in caffeinated coffee could balance those effects at doses of four servings per day. Polyphenols act as antioxidants. They protect cells and body chemicals against damage caused by free radicals. Coffee is one of the most polyphenol-rich worldwide, beverage 

A microscopic mite on human skin has been found in significantly higher numbers than usual on the skin of people who suffer Rosacea.

Dairy is a good source of vitamin D and calcium, but it’s also an inflammatory food. As a result of inflammation, you may notice increased facial redness and swelling. Removing dairy from your diet may reduce redness and other symptoms of Rosacea. Remember to keep your “Trigger Diary”

 

Rosacea presents differently with every client.  It does however gradually worsen with age, especially if untreated.  Many Rosacea sufferers have reported their condition had advanced from mild to severe within a year. We must take into consideration of course that there are two powerful influencing factors that accompany age.

Hormonal changes as in Menopause and of course our skin cells are older.

If you look at a typical Rosacea patient, it tends to be a mid-life woman. That’s because hormonal changes with menopause are a big trigger. The loss of estrogen can show on your skin starting in perimenopause, which is the period leading up to menopause when hormone levels start to decline. During this time, your body becomes more sensitive to temperature. You may have episodes in which you suddenly feel hot and sweaty, and your face gets red and flushed.

Rosacea’s progressive. I’d say rhinophyma is the worst and most advanced stage of rosacea. It’s the stage where you have the nodules and the papules and the acne forming. It’s that chronic, deeply flushed redness. It’s the dilated capillaries that you get all over your skin. You might [also] get reoccurring eye infections with your lashes. It becomes a very involved condition

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