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Monday, February 1, 2016

Products and rosacea: What to use—Part I

Trial and, possibly, error...!
If you have rosacea, when it comes to what products to use on your face, mild is the one word that comes to mind. You want to find non-irritating, mild products to use on your rosacea. You will want to avoid anything that is going to irritate your skin. This may seem like an obvious recommendation, but I still get people who come into my office who don’t heed the most obvious advice. Even if they know they shouldn’t do something, many times they do it anyway. Thus the saying, “Throw caution to the wind.”

For any of you with rosacea, your daily routine won’t really change; you will still do your cleanse, tone, hydrate (The Basics 1-2-3) program morning and night. What you use will be the biggest trial and error experiment you have had to date. Even if I could give specific product recommendations here, they wouldn’t work for everyone. I know it is frustrating not knowing what to use, and no doubt you have already gone through a lot of different products—hopefully finding some that work for you and your rosacea.

Soap may be an irritant if you have rosacea. I’m not a very big fan of soap—in fact I’m not a fan at all. I recommend using liquid cleansers (milks and gels) over soap any day—every day. The ingredients that make soap soap are too harsh for the skin on the face, especially if you have a condition like rosacea. In other words: Don’t use soap! (Read MYTH: Soap is a good cleanser, link below.)

Although I never recommend anyone use products that contain alcohol (the bad kind: SD and ethyl), rosaceans want to be especially careful to avoid this harsh and reaction-causing ingredient. Your toner should not have alcohol in it. Again, this is true for anybody, but especially for those with rosacea. Look for soothing ingredients like allantoin, camomile, and lavender as good ingredients to have in a toner. Some natural-type products may say for sensitive skin, which would be the toner you would naturally reach for, right? But still, look at the ingredients.
See category toners for more information on this essential step
The toner for sensitive skin in the Yonka line (Lotion PS) is also for a drier skin type. It contains special ingredients in it to moisturize a true-dry skin, which would be a disaster for an oilier skin type. So if you tend to have an oilier complexion, you will want to use extra caution when choosing a toner for sensitive skin. If you do end up with a toner that is too much for your skin, take it back and try one for a skin type more closely related to your own. Remember: your skin type is first and foremost based on oil content.

Moisturizers will vary, and the trial and error method may be what you have to go through in order to find the perfect moisturizer for you. Know that you will want to avoid AHAs (alpha hydroxy acids). I would also avoid glycolic peels in a facial, retinoic acid products like Retin-A and Renova, and most vitamin C products, which will probably be irritating to your skin.

Basically acid compounds, like AHAs, citric, and retonic, will worsen the symptoms of rosacea. Acids tend to dilate and irritate skin they are used on, so avoid them in the products you use. If you get facials, make sure the aesthetician has an awareness about rosacea and how to treat it in a facial.

For more information, see: