If you are someone with rosacea or you suspect you may have rosacea, I would suggest looking at your diet first and foremost. Eliminate or at least reduce highly acidic and inflammatory foods like caffeine, alcohol, meat, dairy, and sugar. Replace them with more alkaline foods such as dark green, leafy vegetables, sweet potatoes and yams, melons, garlic and onions, fish and lean chicken, and whole grains. Note that these are all foods that provide loads of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, so they are great for one's overall health.
The website Rosacea Ltd. has a “Rosacea Diet” that has very helpful food charts that map out levels of acidity and alkalinity in foods. It is a great resource. Make sure you are keeping yourself adequately hydrated too. I suggest a visit to a nutritionist or holistic practitioner. They can give you detailed diet and lifestyle recommendations. It is also worth noting that most cultures of the world who consume diets consisting of primarily alkaline foods do not have rosacea or other skin disorders.
Skin care for rosacea
Look at the labels on your skin care products, hair care products, and cosmetics. Rosacea.org has a great reference on their site about what ingredients to avoid, and good skin care tips for rosacea in general. They do not say to avoid parabens or formaldehyde-releasing agents…but I am adding it to the list.
If you choose to see an aesthetician or skin care therapist to help improve the appearance of your rosacea, look for one who specializes in this disorder. Ask questions and ask to see before and after pictures of real rosacea clients. Make sure they use a skin care line designed for sensitive skin and that do not contain any of the ingredients that should be avoided. There should be no steaming of the face, and no exfoliation by means of scrubbing, abrading, or brushing the face. Facial massage should be minimal, or completely avoided.
Rosacea is a very treatable condition without medical intervention. If you are a rosacea sufferer, or think you might have this disorder, I highly recommend making the necessary changes to your diet, skin care regimen, and lifestyle before putting chemicals and drugs into your body or getting zapped with lasers.
*Source: Johnson B, MD. Transform Your Skin Naturally: Groundbreaking Alternatives to Exfoliation and Other Damaging Antiaging Strategies (El Segundo, CA, 2010) 46-47, 159-161.