Rosacea can be a tricky skin condition to battle. Appearing overnight for many, it often seems that the more products you use to treat it, the sorer and more inflamed it can become. Knowing what to reach for when you have a flare-up can feel like a minefield, so below we have a rundown of a) the skincare ingredients to steer clear of and b) those to help soothe the redness; take the heat out of your skin; and strengthen the skin’s natural barrier to help lessen sensitivity.

As always, with any skin condition that has appeared suddenly or is causing you discomfort or distress, the best course of action is to speak to an experienced dermatologist to understand your own skin and how best to manage its care. More information can be found at

But first things first:

What Is Rosacea?

Rosacea is a chronic skin condition characterised by redness, flushing, visible blood vessels, and sometimes acne-like bumps. It typically affects the face, particularly the cheeks, nose, chin, and forehead. In some cases, the eyes may also be affected, leading to symptoms like dryness, irritation, and redness.

What Can Cause Rosacea?

Rosacea can be triggered by various factors, including spicy foods, alcohol, extreme temperatures, sunlight, stress, and certain skincare products. Individuals with fair skin, a family history of rosacea, or a tendency to blush easily are more prone to developing this condition at any age, but commonly in their 40s and 50s.

What Skincare Should I Avoid?

When dealing with rosacea, it's essential to steer clear of skincare products that contain harsh ingredients or irritants. Avoid products with alcohol, fragrances, menthol, tea-tree and exfoliating agents like alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) or physical scrubs. Additionally, be cautious with products that produce heat on the skin, such as hot towels or steam treatments, as they can exacerbate redness and inflammation, as well as killing the good bacteria within your skin’s microbiome which actually help to strengthen skin.

What Skincare Ingredients Can Help?

Opt for gentle, soothing skincare products that cater to sensitive skin. Look for ingredients like niacinamide, which helps strengthen the skin barrier and reduce redness, and ceramides, which aid in moisture retention. Green tea extract and liquorice extract are known for their anti-inflammatory properties and can help calm redness and irritation. Additionally, mineral-based sunscreens with zinc oxide or titanium dioxide provide broad-spectrum protection without irritating the skin.