Rosacea is a chronic, recurrent, inflammatory disease of the face. It occurs in all races but is more common among light-skinned women between 30 and 50 years old. The disease is characterized by temporary or persistent erythema or redness of the skin, small dilated blood vessels near the surface of the skin, edema, and papules and pustules of the middle of the face. Although rosacea has been associated with environmental, vascular and inflammatory factors, as well as microorganisms, its exact cause is still unknown. This makes it difficult to determine the most effective therapy, and new treatments are continuing to be developed.
Since about half of rosacea patients have dry skin, the most common therapies involve the avoidance of sun and other trigger factors, as well as the use of rosacea cream to moisturize the skin. In addition to moisturizers, rosacea creams often include sunscreens to help protect patients from the harmful effects of sun exposure, antibiotics such as metronidazole and erythromycin to treat bacterial infection and manage lesions, and anti-inflammatory agents such as azelaic acid to unblock pores and reduce redness and swelling in the face. Some rosacea creams may contain isotretinoin, a powerful retinoid that is more effective in hard-to-treat rosacea cases. However, this may not be safe for women who are pregnant or planning to become pregnant.
Water- or alcohol-based rosacea creams can cause stinging, burning and worsening of the dry, red scaly condition of the central face, so it is important that rosacea creams are formulated from safe and natural ingredients. Some rosacea creams contain plant and herbal extracts that are rich in flavonoids, which have proven antioxidants properties and phenylpropenoic acids and saponosids, which can help improve vascular wall permeability and mechanical resistance of capillaries. In particular, rosacea creams that contain antioxidants can reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and also provide protection against environmental factors, including sun damage, air pollution, and cigarette smoke.
Before using rosacea creams, particularly for moderate to severe cases, it is advised that you consult a dermatologist first in order to find out which rosacea cream would be more effective and safe for your particular condition.