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The Science Behind Rosacea: How To Rid The Red

Rosacea is a common, but poorly understood, skin condition affecting up to 16 million Americans.[1] Most seen in teenagers or those over 40, the cause of rosacea is still not entirely known – although there are many contributing factors that can make the condition worse. Sufferers can experience flare-ups on and off throughout their lives, but these symptoms can be controlled and reduced with lifestyle changes, good skincare, medication, or natural remedies.

Rosacea presents itself as red, inflamed and sensitive areas of the cheeks, nose, and chin, and can lead to broken capillaries under the skin that are permanently visible. Rosacea is often difficult to diagnose, as it often looks like raised acne or allergic reactions, so it’s estimated that over 90% of rosacea patients don’t even know they have the condition. [2]

Types Of Rosacea

There are four different types of rosacea, each with their own set of symptoms. It’s possible to have more than one type at a time [3]. The four types are:

  1. ETR (erythematotelangiectatic rosacea) is associated with the common redness, flushing and visible blood vessels under the skin.
  2. Acne Rosacea (papulopustular) can develop acne-like breakouts and often affects middle-aged women.
  3. Rhinophyma is a rarer form, that causes the skin on your nose to thicken. This usually affects men.
  4. Ocular Rosacea occurs around the eye area, causing sensitivity and stinging of the area.

Rosacea can start small and quickly spread but is not contagious to others. The severity of your rosacea will depend on stress levels, hormones, lifestyle, sun exposure, and any autoimmune reactions.

The Main Causes

Although the main cause of rosacea is unknown, dermatologists believe that there are a few key triggers that worsen the condition. All four types of rosacea can be underpinned as an inflammation of the skin – so to understand what causes rosacea, we must first understand what causes inflammation.

Here are the main contributing factors to developing rosacea:


Annoyingly, some subtypes of rosacea seem to have a genetic factor and run down through families. So, if a parent suffers from rosacea, there is a greater chance that you will, too.

Sun Damage and Sun Exposure

We all know that UV damage is the main cause of most skin complaints, including aging, fine lines and wrinkles – but this over-exposure of the sun can also trigger the onset of rosacea inflammation. Sun exposure produces a vascular change and encourages the blood vessels under the skin to develop and become more visible.


When we are stressed, our bodies struggle to defend against inflammation, infection and other toxins. Heightened levels of cortisol can also increase inflammation around the body, including in your skin and gut.

Change In Temperature

When we constantly go from hot to cold temperatures, our blood vessels dilate and expand more frequently than they would normally. This repeated change in dilation can cause broken capillaries and issues with our skin’s surface.

Alcohol Consumption

Both alcohol and caffeine consumption has been proven to exacerbate the symptoms of rosacea. Many doctors believe this is due to the constriction of healthy blood flow (including enough oxygen) to the skin when alcohol is present in the body.

Skin Mites (Demodex)

Demodex is microscopic skin mites that are normal inhabitants on human facial skin. However, in some individuals, overproduction of these mites can trigger an autoimmune response that causes inflammation.

How To Treat Rosacea

The best way to help reduce your rosacea symptoms is to take extra care of your skin. Use gentle cleansers, oil-free and water-based skin care products, and treat your skin with a weekly face mask that’s full of nourishing ingredients.

Here are other natural treatments to try:

1. Identify Dietary Triggers

Many experts believe that rosacea is a ‘whole-body’ issue, not just a skin issue. Inflammation anywhere on the body is often triggered by intolerance or sensitivity to certain foods, and when the gut bacteria is imbalanced, so is the condition of our skin. Your skin is your external reflection of your overall health – which is why we break-out after indulging on sugary candy or fatty foods. By introducing more skin-friendly foods into your daily intake, like organic fruits and vegetables, healthy fats such as avocados and nuts, and inflammatory foods like turmeric and ginger, you will notice your skin will become brighter, and more nourished.

It’s also beneficial to reduce any alcohol or caffeine intake and steer clear of processed dairy products – as these tend to be the main culprits when triggering rosacea.

2. Reduce Stress & Anxiety

As with any skin break-out, rosacea can be triggered by increased stress levels. Controlling and reducing your stress levels will first balance any inflammation and an autoimmune response in your skin, but it will also help to focus your attention into the proper care and attention your skin needs during a flare-up.

3. Wear A Daily Sunscreen

Everyone over the age of 25 should already protect their skin from the aging damage of sun-exposure every day, but if you suffer from rosacea (no matter your age), this necessity for UV protection increases. UV light aggravates the inflammation and sensitivity of rosacea and can cause further irreversible damage. The sun is seen as one of the worst contributing factors for rosacea. [4]

4. Invest In Good Skincare

Rosacea can hugely affect the hydration, elasticity, and permeability of your skin’s barrier – leaving it dry, scaly and sensitive to chemical products. Natural, nourishing and high-quality products are vital for your skin to try and rejuvenate and recover from a rosacea breakout. It might be tempting to cover your skin in medicated steroid creams or over-the-counter moisturizers, but this may cause further irritation and make the redness worse. Instead, opt for high-quality skin care products that are rich in plant extracts and natural oils.

Our Nanotech Stem Cell Face Masks provide a weekly deep-skin treatment to restore and revive dry or damaged skin. The Ginseng Stem Cell technology has been proven to help heal and rejuvenate any damaged skin cells, and encourage the production of a new, healthy dermal layer.

Final Thoughts

Although incurable, suffering from rosacea doesn’t mean you have to put up with the red flashes, inflammation and pain of sensitive skin forever. There are many lifestyle and dietary changes you can adopt to manage the symptoms of this skin condition, and ensuring your skin-care regimen is the best it can be will help reduce any visible indicator. Here at Cel, we strive to create skin-loving products that are backed with scientific know-how, to help you discover the best version of you, and your skin.



Rachel Cleverley


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