A tenth of us suffer from rosacea and that includes celebrities too!
Rosacea is estimated to affect up to 10% of us, and is especially common in fairer skinned humans from Northern Europe.
This is why it’s dubbed “the Curse of the Celts”. Although April is Rosacea Awareness Month, sufferers deal with it year round and it can flare up intensely in the winter months due to changes in temperature, harsh winds, and the sugar and tipples associated with the Christmas season.
Have you ever noticed that “celebrity” could be synonymous with “clear-skinned”? Well, it’s a myth, and plenty of stars deal with rosacea, acne, psoriasis, pigmentation and other skin conditions or concerns on a regular basis.
Some well-known rosacea sufferers include Renee Zellweger,Cynthia Nixon, Brittany Snow, Sam Smith, Sofia Vergara, and even infamously porcelain Dita Von Teese.
Thankfully, between minor lifestyle changes such as avoiding triggers like alcohol or spicy food, medication and using the right skincare, rosacea can be managed.
Brittany Snow’s skincare routine incorporates oat extracts, topical omegas and probiotics. From oat, we can extract something called an avenanthramide, a compound that is proven to bring down irritation and even reduce itching in the skin - rosacea can be itchy, heated and even painful, so soothing ingredients should be the basis of any skincare routine.
Omegas and essential fatty acids are so integral for our skin’s barrier, the protective layer of oils and fats that waterproofs it, keeps it hydrated and protects it from irritants.
Those with rosacea already have what we call a “compromised barrier”, meaning their barrier needs more help and their skin will be more sensitive to external irritants. When you have rosacea, when your barrier is happier, your skin is happier.
I’ve been raving about topical probiotic skincare for years and thankfully, it’s having a moment. Topical probiotics help to balance the skin’s microbiome, a living environment made up of microflora like bacteria and mites.
Studies on the effects of using topical probiotics when it comes to rosacea, acne and other skin concerns do point towards benefits - however, it depends on the specific bacterial strain being tested. Within the Nerd Network, we find that probiotic skincare does help clients suffering from rosacea, redness, sensitisation and those with congestion too.
Sofia Vergara says that she keeps her skincare routine simple to help manage her rosacea, and there’s definitely something in keeping your routine simple when it comes to rosacea.
Keeping it simple doesn’t mean not using a serum or not keeping your skin hydrated - what it means is avoiding certain ingredients that may irritate reactive skin, but won’t necessarily irritate everyone.
The ingredients in skin care that can bother those with rosacea include drying alcohols (alcohol denat., SD alcohol), synthetic fragrances or essential oils, SLS (sodium lauryl sulphate) and high amounts of exfoliating acids such as glycolic acid or salicylic acid.
At The Skin Nerd, we find that what you’re putting in on the inside has a huge effect on your skin.
When you have rosacea, avoid things that will inflame you such as too much caffeine, sugar, alcohol, cigarettes and spicy food and opt for foods rich in the nutrients known to be anti-inflammatory and skin-beneficial, such as essential fatty acids (omegas), probiotics, prebiotics and antioxidants like polyphenols which you can find tonnes of in berries and cherries.
Maybe you associate Yon-Ka with lots of essential oils — which I just advised against for rosacea — but their Sensitive Creme Anti-Redness is free from fragrance and essential oils.
This rich, moisturising cream contains centella asiatica, a botanical extract known as tiger grass or cica, which is known to be incredibly anti-inflammatory and healing, plus Marvel of Peru extract, which helps with the vascular dilation that appears on the skin as redness.
The Nerdie Pick: Yon-Ka Sensitive Creme Anti-Redness (€56.40, selected salons).