A common skin condition that can cause redness, blemishes, and swelling around the cheeks and nose, rosacea is generally a cosmetic concern. Still, it can cause a lot of physical and emotional distress. Nearly 14 million Americans suffer from this skin disorder, the “flushing” effect being the most unwelcome—it’s caused by the inflammation and dilation of hundreds of tiny blood vessels at the skin’s surface. It can also cause symptoms like facial swelling, acne-like bumps, visible blood vessels, a warm sensation in the skin, and dry or red eyes.
It’s believed that rosacea is a vascular disorder related to increased blood flow, but the exact causes are still unclear. While visiting a doctor is always the best course of action for diagnosis and treatment, there are some natural remedies you can do at home to help with this condition if you prefer a more holistic approach!
1. Try natural anti-inflammatories
Did you know there are several herbs that are famous for their anti-inflammatory properties? In fact, many cosmetic brands leverage the power of these herbs in their makeup and skincare already. However, the most effective ones that dermatologists love are lavender, licorice, green tea, feverfew, oatmeal, and chamomile. Each of these remedies has a mountain of evidence to back up its ability to reduce redness, shrink inflamed blood vessels, and help protect your skin from future flare-ups!
2. Go with natural cosmetics
Those with rosacea often go heavy on the makeup to mask that redness, but in some cases, this can work against you. Many dermatologists recommend avoiding cosmetics to give your skin some breathing room. Still, sometimes that’s not an option, especially if you’re face to face with people every day and already feel self-conscious about it. Going with mineral-based makeup or products infused with anti-inflammatory herbs (as mentioned previously) can be a good compromise for toning down some redness while babying your skin for faster healing.
3. Wear mineral-based sunscreen without fail
The link between sun damage and rosacea is well-documented, so if you’ve been leaving the house without your SPF, it’s time to change that. Protecting your skin from the sun can help prevent your symptoms from worsening, and using as few chemicals as possible is always ideal. Mineral sunscreens are typically free of chemicals, and are light on the skin, so incorporating one with at least 30 SPF is highly recommended.
4. Use a silk pillowcase and change it regularly
Our skin goes into repair mode when we sleep, so the material you sleep on matters more than you realize! Silk has long been a favorite of dermatologists for many reasons—it won’t create painful friction on your skin throughout the night, it doesn’t suck the moisture from your skin, and you can even infuse it with a few drops of essential oils (anti-inflammatories again!). Also, make sure you clean your pillowcase regularly, as dead skin cells, dirt, and oils can accumulate over time and clog your pores.
5. Adjust your diet
While each person has different triggers for their rosacea, there are some common food triggers to keep in mind. Common allergens like dairy, nuts, gluten, sugar, fried foods, caffeine, and alcohol may contribute to inflammation and skin irritation, so try eliminating some to see if there’s any change. You can also incorporate known anti-inflammatory foods like garlic, ginger, onions, broccoli, green tea, turmeric, and collard greens. And don’t forget your fruits, vegetables, and healthy fats—leafy greens and orange/yellow fruits can help fight sun damage. Healthy fats like coconut oil, olive oil, and avocado can help with stress management, digestive inflammation, and hormone regulation!