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5 Rosacea Triggers You Should Know

5 Rosacea Triggers You Should Know

The red rashes, patches, and pustules of rosacea can make you so embarrassed that you blush. And, as you know, blushing makes your reddened skin worse. 

So, how can you avoid embarrassing and sometimes uncomfortable rashes and lesions? Rosacea may affect you slightly differently than the other 16 million women and men in the United States who have it, but you probably share at least one of the most common triggers.

At The Center for Dermatology Cosmetic & Laser Surgery in Mount Kisco, New York, our skilled dermatologists help you deal with the effects of rosacea flare-ups with several effective therapies. But we’d also like to help you avoid a flare in the first place.

What are your rosacea triggers? Avoiding these five common ones may help you find out.

1. Sunny days

Ultraviolet (UV) light from the sun feels nourishing, but as we know from skin cancer, it can cause damage. Not only does overexposure to UVA and UVB light change the DNA of your skin cells, but if you have rosacea, it can bring on a flare-up.

In fact, sunlight was the top trigger for flares in a survey of adults with rosacea. Although you may hate to hide away on sunny days, your skin thanks you.

Adopt sun-healthy habits outdoors; even clouds can bounce UVA and UVB rays around to damage your skin. Be sure to:

Use sunscreen formulated with nonirritating ingredients; chemicals can bring on a rosacea flare. We recommend a medical-grade sunscreen formulated for your skin type and needs. 

2. Extreme temperatures

Whether you’re indoors or outdoors, temperatures that are too high or air that’s too dry could irritate your skin enough to cause a rosacea flare. Prepare for seasonal changes to keep your skin safe.


Use hats and scarves outdoors to block the wind. Set up a humidifier in your home to avoid dry air. Sit and sleep far from radiators and other heat sources. Don’t turn up the heat too high.


Keep the AC at a moderate level. Make sure your hat keeps the sun off your face.

3. Hot stuff

You may love spicy food, but it doesn’t love your skin. Anything that dilates your blood vessels can bring on a rosacea attack. You may need to make some dietary adjustments, such as cutting down on or eliminating spices.

Even hot beverages, such as cocoa or coffee, could trigger a flare-up. Keep drinks and soups closer to lukewarm to make your skin happy.

4. Dehydration

As if you needed yet another reason to quit, cigarette smoking and alcohol are rosacea triggers. Alcohol flushes and dehydrates your skin. Cigarettes dehydrate your skin and other organs.

Switch to water and other healthy beverages. Even (tepid) coffee and tea help keep you hydrated. So does eating plenty of moisture-rich vegetables.

5. Stress

If you blush easily, you’ve already experienced how a stressful or embarrassing situation can literally lead to a red face. Or, you may have noticed that you actually become red-faced with anger when dealing with a frustrating situation.

Learn deep breathing, reframing, and other techniques to de-stress in the moment. Keeping your cardiovascular system from pumping too high may halt a rosacea flare in its tracks.

Unfortunately, even the stress of vigorous exercise may bring on a flare. If you love to work out (and you should exercise regularly for overall health), keep hydrated with cool liquids. Also, consider using a cooling towel to keep your face from getting too red.

Do you have trouble managing rosacea flares? Find out how we can help with a customized plan. Contact us by phone or online form for rosacea treatment today. 


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