Rosacea Skin Care
Discover the best skin care routines and products for rosacea!

Dermatologist’s Skin Care Treatment For Controlling Rosacea

This is the most popular skin care treatment routine my patients use to control the complexion problems of rosacea.  It is built from the four essential steps in a Complete Skin Care Routine, which include:

  1. Cleanse
  2. Correct
  3. Hydrate
  4. Protect

My patients and I have learned some important things about rosacea skin care, and the routine we use is based on what we have learned:

  • Nonirritating skin care products are best. They are layered to create complete skin care.
  • My Redness Relief Kit is the foundation of the most successful rosacea skin care routines. This includes two products: Calming Zinc Soap (with 2% pyrithione zinc) and my Green Tea Anti-Oxidant Skin Therapy Cream (with green tea/caffeine/hyaluronic acid).  
    • The Calming Zinc Soap is used once a day for skin cleansing.
    • The Green Tea Skin Therapy is applied twice a day right after washing and toweling skin dry.
  • Other non-irritating skin cleansers can be alternated with the Calming Zinc Soap such as Toleriane Cleanser, VaniCream Cleansing Bar Soap or my Naturally Best Bar Soap. One cleanser can be used in the AM and the other in the PM.
  • My patients do best when they apply medicated prescription products after their Green Tea Antioxidant Skin Therapy.
  • It is important to use a good moisturizing face cream to ‘dial in’ proper hydration where needed so that your skin can heal.
  • Mineral sunscreens are the best sun protection for rosacea and are especially important because the sun can be a trigger to rosacea.
  • Makeup, if used, is applied on top of your complete skin care routine products. Simple mineral makeup powders are best for rosacea.
  • Stubborn or severe rosacea should be treated by a dermatologist as rosacea can leave lasting and unwanted changes on facial skin.

Cleanse: Use only cool/warm/tepid water and your fingertips or a gentle cloth. Avoid hot water. Use Calming Zinc Soap alternating with a gentle cleanser, such as those I mentioned above

Note: for deep pore cleansing, a Clarisonic SMART Profile or Clarisonic Mia 2 skin cleaning brush can be used on the gentle cycle and/or with a brush designed for sensitive skin if your skin can tolerate it. Another caveat is that Foaming Benzoyl Peroxide Cleanser is helpful for oily complexions with papulopustular rosacea. It is not tolerated by rosacea complexions that have sensitive skin. It is alternated with Calming Zinc Soap in place of a gentle cleanser.

Correct: Apply a single pump of Green Tea Antioxidant Skin Therapy to your entire face after washing and toweling dry. Layer any additional products or medicines on top including:

  • Prescription medicines at the direction of your treating physician (please ask your doctor to approve medicine compatibility with the Green Tea Therapy)
  • Benzyol Peroxide Cream where needed if you have extremely oily, tolerant skin with numerous pimples. (Benzoyl proxide is rarely tolerated by rosacea complexions with sensitive skin.)

Hydrate: Layer your moisturizer on top of the Green Tea Antioxidant Skin Therapy. Allow a minute or so for the Green Tea Antioxidant Skin Therapy to dry and start to absorb into your skin.  Chose the right moisturizer based on your skin type:

Step 4.  Protect

During the day, sunscreen must be applied, because rosacea often is activated by sun exposure. Plus, sun protection is essential to prevent skin aging and protect against skin cancer.  

In my experience, zinc oxide products work best for rosacea-prone complexions.  

Apply your sunscreen on top of your moisturizer (choose your product based on your skin type.) These are the most popular sunscreens for rosacea in my practice:

Sunscreens tinted to soften complexion flaws, such as redness

Untinted sunscreens

  • Sheer Strength Pure Physical Spray Sunscreen. An ultra light texture product that is excellent for hairy skin and all complexion types. Water resistant for up to 40 minutes.
  • Citrix Sunscreen. A time honored work-horse sunscreen in my practice good for all skin types. Water resistant. Dries to a nice feel on skin.
  • Solbar Zinc. Another work-horse product in my practice that’s good for all skin types and water resistant. It retains a moist feel on skin and is also well priced.

If you wear makeup, apply it on top of your sunscreen (or moisturizer in the evening).  Makeup is applied on top of sunscreen, not in place of it.

If you also want to learn more detailed info about rosacea you can see my Rosacea Guide.