Rosacea is progressive skin condition that gets worse if left untreated.  It should be diagnosed early and treated as soon as possible to prevent  an increase in severity.  Most people do not realize that they have rosacea until they have a very red face most of the time.  It is much better to start rosacea treatment early- when your face flushes from emotion, alcohol and exercise. There are many prescription medications for rosacea, but if you catch it early you can usually treat rosacea without a prescription. While there is no cure for rosacea, it can easily be prevented by using the best rosacea skin care at the earliest signs of rosacea on the face or rosacea on cheeks. 

How To Know If You Have Rosacea?

How do you know if you have rosacea? It is rare that a patient will ask “Do I have rosacea?” because they usually do not suspect it. Most patients think that they have sensitive skin and do not realize that they have rosacea. If your face gets red and flushes with emotion, exercise, alcohol, hot foods (temperature) or spicy foods, it’s likely that you have early rosacea.  It is hard for darker skin types to see the red face that is characteristic of rosacea so, if you have brown skin or black skin, you can tell if you have rosacea because your face will sting or feel hot.  Our skin type quiz can help you catch rosacea early- before you or your dermatologist suspect it.  Take the quiz to see what types of inflammation your skin has so that you, if you have rosacea, can get started on the best skin care for rosacea now. We recommend trying cosmeceutical products first and, if that does not work, consult one of our STS Approved medical providers to see if you need a rosacea prescription medication.

Take the Skin Type Quiz To See If You Have Rosacea

If you have facial flushing, a red face, a stinging face after cleansing, or you notice that your face feels hot- you probably have rosacea.  I often hear rosacea patients say, “My face burns when I put moisturizer on!” or, “Every moisturizer burns my face!” Rosacea skin tends to burn when it contacts low-pH skin care ingredients such as alpha-hydroxyacids (glycolic acid and lactic acid) and Vitamin C.  Sunscreen ingredients, such as avobenzone, can cause a burning sensation on face after applying cream which is a characteristic sign of early rosacea. Preservatives in skin care, such as benzoic acid, can cause the face to sting and give you a red face.  If you have rosacea, you need a personalized skin care routine to help calm and soothe your sensitive skin.

Rosacea Skin Care

The best skin care products for rosacea have anti-inflammatory ingredients to soothe and calm inflammation.  When choosing rosacea skin care, it is as important to know which skin care ingredients to avoid when you have rosacea as it is to find the best skin care products for rosacea. The way you apply the rosacea skin care products is also important.  You should not use a loofa, facial brush, rough wash cloth or anything else that causes friction on the skin’s surface.  Friction worsens inflammation which causes the face to flush red. All skin care for rosacea should be applied gently, with your fingers, using slow gentle swirling movements.

Best Rosacea Skin Care Ingredients To Soothe and Calm Skin


Argan oil



Fever few

Green tea

Linoleic acid




Salicylic acid

Ingredients To Avoid If You Have Rosacea


Benzoic acid

Certain alcohols

Eucalyptus oil


Peppermint oil

Witch hazel

Rosacea Cleanser

The best cleansers for rosacea contain soothing and calming ingredients, do not have ingredients that irritate sensitive skin and should not be abrasive. While you should avoid alpha hydroxy acid cleansers, salicylic acid is a great choice for a rosacea cleanser because  it is in the aspirin family and is good at reducing inflammation in sensitive skin. Never use a facial scrub if you have rosacea! Many sensitive skin cleansers are not right for rosacea because there are many types of sensitive skin. The best rosacea cleansers have caffeine, salicylic acid, argan oil, green tea, panthenol, fever few, chamomile, niacinamide and resveratrol.

How To Wash Your Face If You Have Rosacea

Rosacea cleansers should be applied with your hands- not with a loofa, facial brush or rough washcloth.  Fill your palm with warm, but not hot, water. Squeeze about ¼ teaspoon of rosacea cleanser into your wet palm.  Apply first to cheeks and then forehead, chin and nose.  Swirl your fingers in a circular motion gently over each area for about 5 seconds before rinsing thoroughly with warm water.  If you have very sensitive skin or severe rosacea- you may choose to use a cleansing water at room temperature rather than tap water.  Be extra cautious if you live in a city like New York that has hard water, as this can irritate your sensitive skin. 

The Best Rosacea Cleansers 

The Best Soothing Cleansing Waters

Rosacea Cream 

While there are many rosacea creams. Rosacea creams, they must be FDA approved to advertise that they work for rosacea.  However, there are many soothing creams available without a prescription that help control inflammation and work well for mild to moderate rosacea. Both prescription and nonprescription rosacea creams are best for dry skin types and combination skin types. We refer to these as “treatment products”.  If you have rosacea, first try using a nonprescription rosacea cream treatment product.  If that does not improve your skin in 8-12 weeks, see an STS approved doctor for a prescription medication treatment product. 

How To Use A Rosacea Cream

You should apply a rosacea cream treatment product twice a day, even if you do not wash your face in the morning. Apply the rosacea treatment before a moisturizer, as the moisturizer helps the rosacea cream penetrate the skin to get better results.  Choose a moisturizer with anti-inflammatory ingredients. The best skin care products for rosacea have ingredients to soothe inflammation like argan oil, niacinamide, fever few and green tea. Look for rosacea moisturizers that do not use benzoic acid as a preservative.  Examples of prescription rosacea creams include Rhofade (oxymetazoline), Soolantra (ivermectin), and Azalea (azelaic acid) Cream.  Aczone (dapsone) is an acne treatment product that is often used as a rosacea cream off label.

The Best Rosacea Creams for Dry Sensitive Skin

Rosacea Serums and Rosacea Gels

There are many prescription rosacea treatment serums and gels. These rosacea serums and gels can be used on dry skin before a hydrating moisturizer or on oily skin before an anti-inflammatory moisturizer or a rosacea safe sunscreen. Prescription rosacea serums and gels include MetroGel (metronidazole), Mirvaso (brimonidine) and Finacea (azelaic acid). Nonprescription soothing serums that have been used to treat rosacea contain ingredients like caffeine, green tea and resveratrol.

How To Use A Rosacea Serum

Use rosacea treatment serums twice a day. If you wash your face in the morning, apply the rosacea serum after cleansing.  If you do not wash you face in the AM, you still should apply the rosacea treatment serum. Follow with a moisturizer that is appropriate for your Baumann Skin Type® and a rosacea friendly sunscreen.

The Best Rosacea Serums 

Rosacea Oils

I am often asked “Which essential oils are best for rosacea?”. The answer is none of them!  Essential oils are better for aromatherapy because they do not contain fatty acids.  It is these fatty acids in oil that have the moisturizing and soothing activities that help rosacea. Don’t use essential oils to treat rosacea.  Instead of essential oils, choose oils with fatty acids like linoleic acid that soothe and calm the skin. Oils that target inflammation are wonderful for rosacea.   Argan oil is the best oil for rosacea. Do not use coconut oil for rosacea because it can cause acne. Jojoba oil is also an option, but jojoba oil is not as good as argan oil as a rosacea treatment.  Avoid using olive oil for rosacea because it can impair the skin barrier. The best rosacea oil to use to soothe the skin is Argan oil like PAORR Moroccan Argan Oil.

Rosacea Toners

Toners are not the best skin care product for rosacea because they often have alcohol in them which can cause facial flushing and result in a red face. Witch hazel, which I found in many toners for sensitive skin, has some anti-inflammatory activity. However, most people with rosacea get a burning face or  stinging face when they use skin care products containing witch hazel.  If you insist on using a toner for rosacea, choose a gentle toner, to  be applied before a rosacea cream or a rosacea serum. An essence is another word for a facial mist toner.. Essences will not be as effective as rosacea serums and rosacea creams.

The Best Toners and Best Essence

Rosacea Sunscreens

Rosacea sufferers often get a burning face or a stinging face when they use chemical sunscreens.  The sunscreen ingredient avobenzone (also called Parsol) is the biggest culprit.  However, oxybenzone, cinnamates like octinoxate (also called octyl methoxycinnamate or ethyl hexyl methoxycinnamate) and dibenzoylmethanes can also cause stinging. The bottom line: choose a mineral sunscreen (also called a physical sunscreen) if you have rosacea.  The other problem with using sunscreen when you have rosacea is how to get sunscreen off without irritating your skin.  Choose a gentle makeup remover to remove your sunscreen if you have rosacea.

Best Gentle Makeup Remover for Rosacea

Best Mineral Sunscreens for Rosacea

Rosacea Facials

Your aesthetician can design a rosacea facial for you based on your Baumann Skin Type®. Rosacea facials should not include scrubs.  An enzyme exfoliator is a better choice to exfoliate rosacea prone skin.  A scrub and microdermabrasion should not be used in a rosacea facial because the friction can cause inflammation.  Your aesthetician should use rosacea creams and serums and a rosaceafriendly toner. Rosacea facials are tricky.  We recommend that you find a STS Approved medical provider with a well-trained aesthetician here. 

Rosacea can be difficult to treat.  You can usually keep it under control if you use the best skin care products for rosacea and your other skin concerns.  It all begins with knowing your Baumann Skin Type®.  Once you know your skin type, we can tell you the exact skin care routine steps for rosacea and give you a daily rosacea skin care regimen.  

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