Before we get to my tips on how to treat rosacea naturally, without the use of toxic chemicals and harsh treatments, I’ll explain a little more about it.
The exact cause of rosacea is unknown, but one explanation is that the regulation of the blood vessels of the face is faulty, leaving them dilated and producing the redness characteristic of rosacea.
Another hypothesis is that it’s caused by small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO). A study by a group of Italian gastroenterologists in Italy in 2008 found that rosacea patients have significantly higher SIBO prevalence than those without rosacea. Even more interesting, the eradication of SIBO created an almost complete regression of the rosacea patients' facial lesions and they maintained this excellent result for at least nine months.
If you’re dark skinned or Asian, you’re in luck – rosacea primarily affects Caucasians. Women are three times more likely to be affected and it’s more common in the 30 to 50 age bracket.
WHAT TRIGGERS ROSACEA FLARE-UPS?
Rosacea flare-ups can be triggered by:
- exposure to extreme temperatures and wind
- strenuous exercise
- sunlight and sunburn
- stress and anxiety
- artificial heating
- alcohol, caffeine, spicy foods and smoking
- hot drinks and baths
- pharmaceutical drugs such as corticosteroids, blood pressure medications and those that dilate the blood vessels
If you’re desperate for ideas and looking for a natural and organic way of treating rosacea, start by monitoring your exposure to the above triggers, then go through your cosmetics and medicines cabinet and do a major edit, starting with harsh acne and wrinkle treatments.
A sensitivity to certain skin care products, cosmetics and pharmaceutical medicines has been found to trigger rosacea in more than 90 per cent of cases.
Antibiotics commonly used to treat rosacea can unfortunately cause it to flare up. Doxycycline can cause rashes, itching, hives, redness, blistering and peeling of the skin, and tetracycline can increase your sensitivity to sunlight and increase your risk of sunburn, which is a no-no for rosacea.
The problem with taking antibiotics for rosacea is that antibiotics kill your healthy gut flora, which are needed to keep your skin clear and healthy. According to the American Academy of Dermatology,"emerging research is finding that the benefits of probiotics may extend beyond the digestive tract to the skin. In fact, skin prone to acne or rosacea has shown improvement with daily probiotic use…”.
Rosacea Creams commonly prescribed for treating the condition include brimonidine cream, ivermectin cream and isotretinoin, which may have tentative short-term benefits but could exacerbate the problem in the long term.
Desperately seeking any solution to treat rosacea, some people try microdermabrasion and chemical peels. I'd advise against this, as any treatment for rosacea needs to be very gentle.
Chemical peels work by removing the top layer of the skin (epidermis) and sometimes the second layer (dermis). The chemicals, acids and retinols required to peel off and exfoliate the upper layer of skin will reveal very fragile and sensitive skin. The newly exposed skin will be more sensitive and prone to redness, burning and stinging as it won’t have had time to adjust to the harsher exposed environment. It'll also be less able to hold moisture, causing even drier skin.
The best advice I have for how to treat rosacea naturally is to leave the skin intact and not further aggravate it by chemical or mechanical peels, and to use natural, certified organic products that will assist with successfully treating rosacea.
6 STEPS TO TREAT ROSACEA NATURALLY
Rosacea benefits from a consistent skin care routine that uses gentle, fragrance-free products containing natural, certified organic ingredients that are very nourishing and calming.
The most soothing botanical ingredients for rosacea are calendula, chamomile, aloe vera and Centella asiatica or gotu kola. Gotu kola is an excellent herb renowned for its ability to strengthen connective tissue, veins and capillaries and improve the blood flow to reduce the flushing effect.
Using the right products can help strengthen capillary walls, soothe the skin and reduce the appearance of redness.
Cleanse day and night with Gentle Melt Cleansing Balm.
This luxurious balm face cleanser gently melts into your skin, removing makeup and impurities without any irritation. Skin softening and antioxidant rich botanical oils of Baobab, Argan, Chia Seed and Carrot Seed nourish, regenerate and boost skin elasticity. With the addition of water when rinsing, this unique jelly cleanser for sensitive skin transforms into a milk emulsion and once removed with a warm face flannel or mitt, reveals a soft, hydrated and dewy complexion.
Apply Barrier Repair Serum.
Supporting skin protection, this remarkable calming serum contains a powerful blend of plant-based antioxidants that defend the skin against environmental aggressors. Potent botanical ingredients for reactive skin help promote the repair process and improve skin texture. This soothing formula is for hormonally reactive and sensitised skin, so it is fragrance free and non-irritating. The silky serum quickly absorbs into the skin, leaving your complexion hydrated and glowing. Suitable for all skin types, this lightweight serum in non-comedogenic, making it a versatile serum to calm redness associated with acne and blemish prone skin.
Moisturise daily with Restorative Moisturiser.
A silky smooth, nourishing and soothing face moisturiser, made for skin types that require gentle, yet restorative ingredients. It contains an abundance of soothing botanical oils and antioxidants that fortify the skin barrier, shielding it from environmental aggressors and keeping your complexion calm. With a delicate scent of Rose Damascena derived from its certified-organic base, your skin will feel both hydrated and protected.
Protect daily with Daily Moisturiser with Sunscreen.
Wearing sunscreen with a SPF of 15+ will help to protect the skin from sun damage. Use a hat to minimise sun exposure to limit rosacea redness. Contains 20% zinc oxide.
Treat nightly with Antioxidant Facial Oil Omega 3-6-9.
Rich in phytonutrients, phytoceramides, beta carotene and vitamin E, this lightweight, instantly absorbing face oil reinforces the skin's natural lipid barrier brightening dull complexions and imparting a radiant glow. Contains a curated infusion of 16 superfood oils that work to restore youthful radiance and impart an extra surge of moisture, leaving your complexion with a visible dewy glow.
Purify your skin once per week with Deep Cleanse Antioxidant Masque.
A deeply purifying clay face masque that detoxifies the skin while imparting essential minerals and phytonutrients improving skin firmness. A unique Papain enzyme-exfoliating complex and bioactive native cellular extracts remove dead skin cells and promote moisture absorption. Spherical Jojoba esters gently melt into the skin retaining hydration, while fine white Argiletz clay works to balance oil production. An infusion of antioxidants and essential fatty acids fortify the skin, encouraging a fresh, bright, glowing complexion. Suitable for all skin types.
- Eliminate intake of processed fats and sugars to reduce inflammation and assist with over secretion of insulin production. This includes fast foods, dairy products and basically anything that is pre-packaged, so read labels carefully.
- Avoid spicy foods, coffee, alcohol and hot beverages that can increase redness and counteract the positive effects of natural rosacea treatments.
- Increase intake of essential fatty acids in the form of nuts, seeds and flax oil if you are vegetarian. If pescatarian include fish such as salmon, mackerel and tuna two to three times per week.
- Check zinc levels. Most of us are zinc deficient due to the depleted nutrients in the soil in which our food grows. Zinc will assist with skin repair and reduce inflammation. Good dietary sources include sunflower and pumpkin seeds, whole grains and lean organic beef if you eat meat.
- Check for low gastric acid levels. Low stomach acid associated with H. pylori can respond well to hydrochloric acid supplementation and reduction of inflammation. A simple breath test can be used to ascertain if this is a possible contributing factor.