Rosacea usually responds satisfactorily to treatment, but improvement is gradual and requires patience as well as perseverance. Patient education plays an important role in managing this disease.
Skin cleansingRosacea patients should wash their face with lukewarm water, avoiding hot or cold temperatures, and apply a gentle liquid cleanser with their fingertips. For wiping the face dry, a soft towel is recommended. Special rosacea cleansers, e.g. containing sodium sulfacetamide and sulfur, may be used.
Avoid certain cosmetic productsProducts containing alcohol, menthol, peppermint, eucalyptus oil and fragrances should be avoided in order to minimize irritation of the skin, as well as greasy products.
Use sunscreenSunscreens with a protective factor of 15 or higher should be applied regularly. If patients complain of skin irritation after the use of sunscreens, chemical-free sunscreens containing titanium and iron particles may be tried.
Facial massageMassaging the nose, cheeks and forehead each evening using a lubricant may be of benefit in persisting edemas (Sobye massage). Controlled studies are lacking, though. The proposed mechanism of this procedure is acceleration of lymphatic drainage with consequent reduction of erythema.
ShavingMale patients should use an electric shaver rather than blades. If blades are used, they should be sharp ones.
DietThere is no rosacea-specific diet, but avoidance of factors which cause facial vasodilatation such as alcohol, hot beverages and spiced food is recommended. Tobacco products should be avoided as well.
Ice chipsIf flushing is to be prevented in a hot environment, ice chips held in the mouth may help for up to half an hour.
Corrective cosmeticsCovering facial redness and telangiectases with cosmetic concealers does not ameliorate the condition, but it leads to an improved appearance. There are several cosmetic products available for rosacea, all of them characterized by a green tint.