Rosacea lotion is a product designed to help people with rosacea, a skin disorder characterized by flushing, acne-like bumps, and small, burst capillaries on the skin's surface. Rosacea generally appears on the face and sometimes the upper body. It can be exacerbated by environmental factors such as sun and extreme temperatures, or by dietary or emotional factors.
Some rosacea lotions are sold by prescription and designed to reduce inflammation and slow the progress of the disease. These might contain antibiotics or ingredients such as metronidazole or azelaic acid. Prescription rosacea lotion should be used daily on any areas of the skin where rosacea symptoms are present. It will not cure the disease, but it can stop it from worsening, and the patient should use it even when there is no evidence of a flare-up.
Other rosacea lotion products are sold over the counter. Many of these products are helpful for some people and harmful for others, so rosacea sufferers often have to test out a few lotions before finding one that is appropriate. Rosacea patients should take care when using over-the-counter lotions because many of them contain ingredients such as cortisone or salicylic acid that can make rosacea worse. Even herb-based lotions can cause rosacea flare-ups in some people, particularly those containing clove oil, peppermint oil, or eucalyptus oil.
In general, a rosacea lotion that won't worsen the condition should be labeled as hypo-allergenic. It should be unscented, and free of alcohol, astringents, and exfoliating agents. Over-the-counter rosacea lotion does not necessarily have to be designed specifically for rosacea. Moisturizing creams made for sensitive skin often work just as well. For most people with rosacea, use of a daily moisturizer helps reduce the discomfort of rosacea, such as itching, burning, or tightness of the skin.
Daily use of sunscreen is also crucial for slowing the progress of rosacea and reducing the number flare-ups. The sunscreen should protect from both UVA and UVB rays, and it should be at least SPF 15, if not higher. Because some chemical sunscreens increase irritation, a cream that contains a physical sunblock like zinc or titanium oxide might be more appropriate for rosacea skin.
If a rosacea lotion doesn't contain sunscreen, a separate sunscreen should be used. The cream should be applied daily regardless of whether it's sunny. It should also be used regardless of how much time will be spent in the sun, as even a few minutes of sun exposure can cause a flare-up.