Rosacea is a chronic skin condition and is seen as an inflammation of the cheeks, nose, chin, forehead or eyelid. It may show up as redness, prominent spider-like blood vessels,swelling, or skin eruptions similar to acne. The cause is generally unknown but it can develop between the ages of 30 and 50 in those who are fair skinned.
The symptoms can show up in a number of ways including:
Redness of the face in discrete areas of covering the entire face.
A tendency to flush or blush easily
Increased spider-like veins
A red, bulbous nos
Acne-like skin eruptions
A burning or stinging sensation of the face
Irritated, bloodshot, water eyes.
As there is no known cure for rosacea, the best method of controlling this is to identify what triggers the flare-ups and then avoid those as much as possible.
Things that have been identified as triggers include:
Exposure to the sun
Prolonged exertion in hot weather
What actually triggers a flare up will vary from one person to another so it is important to find out what the specific triggers are for the individual and then find ways to avoid them. Keeping this condition under control requires a two prong approach: 1) avoiding the known triggers and 2) alleviating the symptoms as much as possible. This is where the use of essential oils and hydrosols come in.
Essential oils that have been found to be helpful in keeping Rosacea under control include Cypress (Cupressus sempervirens), Neroli (Citrus aurantium var. amara flos.),Rock Rose (Cistus ladaniflerus), German Chamomile (Matricaria recutita), Helichrysum (Helichrysum italicum) and Rosewood (Ariba roseodora). As the oils will be used on the face and the skin is already sensitive only use in 1 % or less dilution. Also skin test a small area before applying your final choice as sometimes the essential oils can trigger a reaction. However even if this is the case, the hydrosols being so much gentler can bring great relief.
Hydrosols can be used in conjunction with essential oils or on their own. They are wonderful in compresses and in spray bottles. The compresses can be really soothing and having a spray bottle handy can time a trigger causes a flare up in flushing can be very effective. My personal favorite hydrosol for this is Geranium (Pelargoniumgraveolens) but Roman Chamomile, Neroli, Rock Rose, Lavender and Rose could also be helpful. Peppermint is a great one to use if you are suffering from a menopausal hot flash as it really helps to cool things down.
If you are thinking about making a simple face product there are lots of fun and easy recipes to be found in my e-Book Aromatic Gifts for all ages and for all seasons.Return to Article Archives