Which skincare is best for rosacea?
As someone healing rosacea naturally and holistically, finding the right natural and organic skincare has been a little tricky to say the least. Over the years I’ve learned to read labels and run ingredients in the EWG.org database to avoid harsh chemicals but also to avoid falling prey to greenwashing. (Greenwashing is when a company uses tactics to make you think their products are safe and natural such as using the color green on their packaging and using words such as “natural” which really doesn’t mean much…We talk about greenwashing in this podcast episode.)
Over the years I’ve also accumulated a counterful of products that I couldn’t return and couldn’t use either because my skin reacted to it! What a waste of money!
So hopefully this rosacea skincare guide will help you save time, money and give you some pointers on how to shop smartly if you have sensitive, rosacea-prone skin.
PS: Feel free to also check out my favorite organic, non-toxic green beauty products and download my free guide: Caroline’s Top 5 Favorite Essential Oils for Sensitive Skin.
2PS: This post will regularly be updated with new products, so feel free to bookmark it or sign up to the Glowletter at the bottom of the page so you don’t miss the updates!
Some of the links on this page are affiliate links which means that if you click on them and make a purchase, I may make a small comission. Affiliate links do not increase the price of your purchase. Thank you for using my links!
How To Shop Smartly For Rosacea Skincare
When shopping for rosacea skincare products (or anything really) I try to find as much information as possible about the brand to make sure our values align. I believe that as consumers, we are voting with our dollars and what we choose to invest in or purchase impacts the environment, farmers, communities and ultimately our health.
Becoming a health advocate and demanding that companies become transparent in their practices / sourcing won’t happen at the governement level, it must be a grass roots movement lead by empowered humxns. If you need a reminder of the influence you have as a consumer, listen to my conversation with Teju the founder of Clean Rebellion.
Here are some questions I like to ask before purchasing a product:
1. Is the product sustainably made or does the company have sustainable practices?
2. Are the ingredients organic or wildcrafted?
3. Is the company transparent about its sourcing, testing, manufacturing process?
4. Does the brand’s mission contribute to a better world?
5. Do they have stellar customer service?
6. Are they cruelty-free?
7. Are the products endorsed by non-affiliated experts?
8. Is the company doing anti-racist work and highlighting brands from the BIPOC community?
9. Are they using plastic or glass?
10. Do they offset carbon production by planting trees?
11. Are the workers — especially in third world countries — paid BEYOND fair wages?
12. Are the products made in China / Asia or locally? If made in China, why?
Note that companies don’t have to hit ALL these key points but as a consumer and advocate for change + a new earth, I do look for these values before giving/investing my dollars in a product/brand.
Why choose natural, nontoxic & organic skincare for rosacea
So why is it important to choose clean, nontoxic, organic skincare if you have rosacea?
No category of consumer products is subject to less government oversight than cosmetics and personal care products. Although many of the chemicals and contaminants in cosmetics and skincare products likely pose little risk, long term exposure has been linked to serious health problems such as hormonal issues and cancer.
The truth is that womxn use anywhere between 5 to 15 skin + haircare products in one day, so those “little amounts” of chemicals add up.
Since 2009, 595 cosmetics manufacturers have reported using 88 chemicals, in more than 73,000 products, that have been linked to cancer, birth defects or reproductive harm.
Many of the chemicals that are banned in Europe are still found in cosmetics in the US:
- Formaldehyde, a known carcinogen
- Mercury, which can damage the kidneys and nervous system.
- Dibutyl and diethylhexyl phthalates, which disrupt hormones and damage the reproductive system
- Isobutyl and isopropyl parabens, which disrupt hormones and harm the reproductive system
- The long-chain per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances known as PFAS, which have been linked to cancer
- M- and o-phenylenediamine, used in hair dyes, which irritate and sensitize the skin, damage DNA and can cause cancer
All of these toxic chemicals have been banned by the European Union and many other nations, and many have been slated for removal from the store brands of major U.S. retailers, including Target, Rite Aid, Walgreens and CVS Health.
All of these toxic chemicals become a burden on your liver and a CRUCIAL element in healing rosacea is to have a liver that functions optimally. (Keep pumping those toxic chemicals in your system — including chemicals such as glyphosate, herbicides and pesticides from the non-organic foods you eat — and your liver will forever be busy trying to rid your body of toxins, toxins that ultimately show up on your skin as rosacea.)
To learn more about toxic chemicals found in skincare products, please visit EGW.org.
Quick tips when shopping for rosacea skincare:
- Look for anti-inflammatory + soothing ingredients such as blue tansy, calendula, chamomile
- Look for organic or wildcrafted plants
- Avoid overly processed coconut oil which can clog pores
- Avoid harsh chemicals and alcohols
- Water-based products contain emulsifiers, read the label carefully
- In doubt, run ingredients through the Skin Deep database
- Avoid the following: petrochemicals (mineral oil, petroleum), parabens, SLSs, synthetic fragrances
Ingredients that may be beneficial for rosacea-prone skin:
- Niacinamide (see a list of products further down)
- Aloe vera
- Helichrysum Italicum, Blue Tansy, Rose and Frankincense essential oils (learn all about essential oils for skincare in my 75-minute video masterclass)
- Cooling and calming hydrosols such as Rose, Immortelle (Helichrysum Italicum) or Melissa (learn more about hydrosols)
The Detox Market has a whole category of products that tackle redness and it’s worth taking a look.
In this post I share some of my favorite balms for rosacea-prone skin
And this is a comprehensive post on suncare / sunscreen products + tips if you have rosacea
A note on Witch Hazel (Hammamelis virginiana)
Many dermatologists and skincare formulators are quick to dismiss our beautiful plant ally Witch Hazel saying that it’s too harsh for rosacea-prone skin, but I have found the opposite to be true.
Witch Hazel which is a natural astringent helps remove excess oil from pores without drying out the skin. Personally, Witch Hazel hydrosol has helped heal break outs faster and tighten pores and we know that one of the symptoms of rosacea is enlarged pores!)
So, why dismiss Witch Hazel?
Some people say that the tannins found in Witch Hazel are sensitizing to rosacea skin. But tannins ALSO contain anti-inflammatory properties that can help minimize redness and inflammation. Tannins also act as an antioxidant against free radicals.
The real issue n my opinion is that most Witch Hazel hydrosols you’ll find on the market has been distilled using denatured alcohol (ethanol) AND the final product will ALSO contain ADDED alcohol to extend its shelf life, otherwise the hydrosol would only last a few months.
I was able to find 100% pure, organic Hammamelis virginiana hydrosol from a local master herbalist so it did not contain any alcohol or preservative.
Another tip is to blend Witch Hazel with Rose to make a hydrofoil that is both healing and hydrating.
Nontoxic & Organic Rosacea Skincare
On the top of my list for rosacea skincare is PAI, a company based out of London with a focus on creating clean, nontoxic skincare with pure ingredients that are gentle on sensitive, rosacea-prone skin.
“I just wanted effective skincare I could trust. Creating Pai was my way of taking back control,” says founder Sarah Brown, who struggled for years with hyper-sensitive and blemish-prone skin. Named after the Maori word “pai,” which translates to “goodness,” her company creates products made with ingredients that are effective, soothing, and free from aggravating chemicals or alcohols.
I’m particularly mad about their rosehip oil, Instant Kalmer serum and Anthemis chamomile moisturizer (divine!).
Arbonne SuperCalm Collection
Arbonne’s SuperCalm collection was formulated to help bring balance back to stressed and sensitized skin which we know is a factor in rosacea skin.
The collection consists of a SuperCalm Vegan Cleansing Milk, Skin Relief Serum and moisturizer all containing skin soothing ingredients.
The SuperCalm moisturizer for example is a lightweight, gentle barrier-supporting formula clinically tested to soothe the appearance of stressed skin, which shows up as uneven in tone, blotchy or sensitized skin. It balances the look of skin tone by reducing the appearance of redness.
The SuperCalm set comes with the Inner Calm Adaptogenic Destress Powder which contain L-Theanine, ashwagandha and saffron.
Dr. Alkaitis was recommended by podcast guest Kristen Arnett specifically for rosacea skin. Kristen has worked in the beauty industry for years and was one of the first make up artist to make the switch from toxic to clean beauty. So I took her recommendation and invested further.
Dr. Alkaitis uses his scientific knowledge and expertise in plant life to fuse science into a holistic approach, hence creating one of the most biodynamic, organic and high-quality skin care lines available on the market today.
His formulations not only support a cellular and biologically functional balance that is aligned with nature, but that supports the skin’s natural processes. Many of his products are designed specially for sensitive, rosacea skin.
The Essential Oils For Skincare Masterclass
A 75-minute video masterclass on how to use essential oils safely and effectively for skincare and skin conditions.
We cover topics such as how to use essential oils safely, the best carrier oils, how to use essential oils for acne, eczema, psoriasis, sensitive and rosacea-prone skin, shopping resources (books, courses, bottles, bags…) and favorite blends & recipes!
I had the pleasure of interviewing Elaine on the journey to glow podcast where she shared her rosacea healing story and how Iremia came about.
(In the episode, Elaine shares how she discovered that an “all natural miracle cream” hailing from China turned out, after a lab test, to be laden with toxic levels of steroids linked to cancer. The story is eye opening and shows the length unscrupulous brands will go to take advantage of people with skin conditions like rosacea.)
Iremia Skincare was designed with sensitive skin in mind and each product is created with natural ingredients that help calm your skin while giving it the nutrients and hydration it needs to thrive. Our philosophy is that our skin doesn’t need a lot of products, just a few great ones.
Get the (free) guide
As a green-beauty junkie, it’s been my mission to find non-toxic, natural products that are high performing AND fit my skin’s unique needs.
After spending thousands of dollars on products but not seeing improvement with my skin, I started researching essential oils.
I discovered 5 that targeted my skin’s dehydration and inflammation, so I immediately put them to the test.
After 2 weeks of testing my own concoctions made of 100% certified pure essential oils, I noticed a huge improvement on the texture and hydration of my skin.
Kim Parenteau, founder of Wild Grace, created a skincare line to help restore skin to its natural state of balance. Her background in Ayurvedic studies gave her a foundation in herbology and ancestral plant medicine to better address skin issues.
For rosacea skincare, you’ll want to try her sensitive “pitta” collection. I’ve tried it myself and was blown away by the quality and scent.
Watch my interview with Kim where she shares Ayurvedic beauty rituals to restored inner and outer glow.
If the idea of farm to face appeals as much to you as it does me you’ll love Vermont brand Apris Apotheca!
Aviva who’s a herbalist and farm girl has spent a decade healing herself through working with plants and animals and has always had an obsession with skincare. She healed her acne by healing her gut and using beautiful potent plant based skincare.
Check out her mist called The Alchemist, it contains niacinamide and skin barrier restoring ingredients. (See below on the benefit of niacinamide for rosacea!)
SUNCARE & SUNCREEN FOR ROSACEA
I became aware of toxic ingredients hidden in conventional sunscreens from a news article I read a few years ago. It announced that Hawaii was the first state in the US to ban the sale of sunscreen containing coral-harming chemicals such as oxybenzone and octinoxate.
Interestingly enough, reports from the Environmental Working Group (EWG.org) have warned consumers against using several brands of conventional sunscreens that include toxic ingredients.
I personally have always reacted to toxic sunscreens so as someone healing rosacea, it was paramount that I find safe, nontoxic options that my skin wouldn’t react to.
In this article I’Ve complied research on the toxic chemicals detrimental to health and how they affect our skin as well as a list of natural, organic, nontoxic sunscreens I’ve tested ad adopted.
Products containing niacinamide
Just a quick google search will confirm that niacinamide is an ingredient that one should look for, especially for rosacea skincare.
Niacinamide is one of the two forms of vitamin B3 — the other being nicotinic acid. Vitamin B3 is also known as niacin.
Niacinamide plays an important role in keeping your skin healthy. For this reason, it’s a popular additive in the cosmetic and skincare industry.
When applied topically or taken orally as a supplement, niacinamide has been shown to have anti-inflammatory effects on the skin (5Trusted Source).
It has been used to help skin conditions like acne and rosacea, a facial skin disorder characterized by redness.
Niacinamide acts as an antioxidant, is antibacterial, anti-inflammatory and anti-ageing. It reduces fine line and wrinkles, skin pigmentation and sebum production. It is increasingly used to help treat acne and rosacea and can help improve epidermal barrier function by increasing the production of ceramides.
Here I’ve compiled a few of my findings included some that I’ve tested myself.
Share this post!
I hope that you’ve found this post on rosacea skincare to be helpful. As always, you’ll have to test the products to see which ones work best for you as there are no one size fits all.
If you have any products you’d like to recommend for this list please feel free to get in touch!
And if you’ve found this post useful, please share it on social media and tag @lovemyjourneytoglow!
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