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Makeup and Rosacea: 9 Tips for Reducing Redness and Avoiding Irritation

People with rosacea do not have to avoid wearing makeup entirely. But, you may want to read these 9 tips to help keep things gentle on your skin.

Read on

Some people with rosacea may have been told to avoid wearing any sort of cosmetics to help avoid flare-ups. However, this advice is not exactly correct or something that you have to follow. Makeup and rosacea can work together just fine with just a little extra care.

Not all makeup can worsen or irritate rosacea, it is more so just a small subset of ingredients that you may need to take care to avoid. 

Of course, there is no reason why you have to wear makeup if you have rosacea, and we are all for feeling comfortable and confident in your bare skin, if you so choose. But, if you love makeup for the fun of it, or maybe you do feel better about yourself when you have a little something on -- that is ok too.

Since rosacea comes with a few challenges when it comes to choosing makeup products while reducing irritation and avoiding flare-ups, we made this article with 9 tips to get you started.

1. It’s all about a good skincare base

Doing your makeup in a gentle way is all about starting right with a clean and moisturized face.

Start by cleansing with a gentle cleanser that you know works well for you, then follow with soothing serums like hyaluronic acid, and top it all off with your go-to moisturizer.

2. SPF is a must

After all of your skincare is done and soaked in, do not forget to apply your daily SPF.

Sunscreen is important for everyone, but even more so for those that are battling rosacea, since UV rays can be a big triggering factor.

Pick an SPF of 30 or higher, and opt for a physical sunscreen over a chemical one. Physical sunscreens use SPF agents that sit on top of the skin like Zinc Oxide, and tend to be less likely to trigger irritation than chemical ones.

3. Choose your tools wisely and apply makeup gently

How you apply your makeup may be just as important as the products that you choose.

If you are already dealing with red and irritated skin from rosacea, a lot of wiping, pulling, or oily fingers on your face can make matters worse.

Always make sure your tools are clean and work your makeup on with a damp beauty blender or soft makeup brush more in a “dabbing” or “patting” motion than wiping the products around.

Also, less is usually more, so start with thin layers of products first.

4. Avoid certain irritating ingredients

You may need to pop on your reading glasses and check out the fine print on those makeup items before buying them to help avoid certain ingredients known to be iffy for those with rosacea.

Some of the biggest rosacea-irritating culprits in cosmetic products are:

alcohol, menthol, and added fragrance.

If you see the above items listed on the ingredients list, it may be wise to go for something else.

5. Counteract redness with color-correction products

Color theory is our friend when it comes to a makeup look where you want any lingering redness from rosacea gone.

The opposite on the color wheel for red is green, so that means that green-tinted primers, creams, and concealers help cancel out redness to make the area appear more neutral.

If redness is a big issue for you, using the aid of a color-correcting product can work wonders if utilized correctly. These items are usually used underneath your base foundation to make sure the green doesn’t take your coloring a little too far in the opposite direction.

6. Blush can be for everyone

Some people with rosacea may feel like they need to avoid blush. Especially if they just spent a lot of makeup applying time trying to reduce redness on their face -- what’s the point of putting some back on?

But, the truth is that anyone can benefit from a well-chosen and well-placed blush to help bring some life and color to your face, in a targeted way.

Find a blush that suits your skin tone and apply it sparingly on your cheeks for a youthful glow and dimension. Just go easy, and see what you like.

7. Choose an easy-to-remove mascara

Back to the point of avoiding too much rubbing of the skin to avoid irritation. This also matters when it comes to taking off your makeup at the end of the day.

The most stubborn-to-remove makeup item is often mascara. And, this might leave to rubbing and scrubbing around your eye area multiple times just to avoid going to bed with raccoon eyes.

Avoiding eye irritation is also especially important for those with rosacea, as many people with this skin condition have related eye irritation in the form of ocular rosacea. 

To help avoid the mascara removal frustration, choose a mascara that rinses off easily with just soap and water. Mascaras that are “tubing” mascaras work by coating the eyelashes in a “tube” of product, which dries and stays put during the day. However, when it comes time to wash off, these tiny tubes easily come loose and wash away with a gentle cleanser -- with no raccoons in sight.

8. Choose your makeup remover wisely

Picking a gentle makeup remover can be just as important as choosing gentle makeup products. You don’t want to be kind to your skin all day just to irritate it at night before going to bed.

Many makeup removers use alcohol to aid the removal process. And, while alcohol in a makeup remover may not bother everyone, people with rosacea may be particularly sensitive to this ingredient.

Micellar water tends to be a particularly gentle makeup remover that works well to leave no makeup residue while still being gentle on your skin.

9. Listen to your skin when trying new products

It may take some time to find all the right makeup, skincare, and makeup removal products that work best for your skin. Try to be patient and listen to your skin when it's trying to give you signals that something isn’t working.

Stinging, burning, itching, or extreme dryness can all be signs that a product isn’t a good fit for you. Integrate new items one at a time so it is easy to know what is working and what is not.

Also, everyone's skin and rosacea presentation can be a little different, so even if a product ticks all of the boxes and should be fine for rosacea, if your skin says otherwise move on to something else.

Strut Health prescription rosacea treatments online

Here at Strut, we develop innovative rosacea formulations for this common yet often underdiagnosed skin condition.

We utilize doctors and compounding pharmacies in order to put together customized formulations that can contain multiple active ingredients all in one simple formula. Often, this can save you money over buying multiple prescription creams with only one active ingredient for rosacea.

If you are interested in learning more about our active ingredients or you want to order a prescription rosacea formulation, simply select our Strut Rosacea Formula, and complete a free online questionnaire and image-based telemedicine consultation. Our U.S. doctors will review your information and put together a formula for you based on your symptoms, goals, and preferences.

Then, a U.S. compounding pharmacy will build your customized formulation and ship it to your front door with our fast and free shipping.

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