Rosacea is a chronic skin condition that affects millions of Americans, mainly those over the age of 30. The cause of Rosacea is unknown and is believed to be genetic. It is commonly seen in people of Western European descent but it can affect anyone.
Rosacea must be diagnosed by a physician. There are several types of Rosacea which can appear in many forms. Erythematotelangiectatic rosacea is characterized by diffuse redness and dilated capillaries and is the most common form observed by your esthetic professional. More aggressive forms of rosacea appear as acne-like papules while other forms can lead to disfigurement around the nose.
Estheticians can play a role in managing rosacea by educating their clients on how to take care of their skin and inform them to avoid factors that can lead to rosacea flare ups. The key to managing rosacea is to cool and calm the skin. The common triggers for flushing (redness) includes heat, which includes sun exposure. Avoiding excessive exposure to the sun is critical and application of an SPF 30, preferably with zinc oxide or titanium dioxide, is absolutely necessary, especially during the warmer months. Avoiding heat, including esthetic treatments that apply heat, steam, hot towels or thermal masks should be avoided in the aesthetic treatment room. Avoidance of essential oils is recommended along with aggressive exfoliation treatments. Strong cleansers can strip lipids from the skin and a gently cleanser is recommended.
Foods to avoid that cause rosacea flare-ups include alcoholic beverages, particularly red wine, hot beverages, spicy foods and citrus.
Rosacea sufferers should be educated about their skin home care regimen in order to properly manage and control their condition. An appropriate cleanser should be selected based on whether their skin is oily or dry. Over cleansing should be avoided along with excessive exfoliation. Alcohol free toners that contain hydrators and soothing agents such as green tea and aloe are recommended. As stated above,broad spectrum sunscreens are very important and should be applied daily. Anti-redness serums are extremely beneficial for controlling rosacea. Look for products containing bisabolol, green tea, licorice extracts and seawhip. Lightweight moisturizers are better for rosacea as heavy creams can be warmer on the skin.
Professional esthetic procedures recommended for rosacea include light massage, manual lymphatic drainage, non-hardening masks, and LED treatments. Light chemical peels, if tailored to rosacea conditions can be beneficial along with IPL treatments.