Facial redness is a common symptom among many individuals particularly fair-skinned people. Whilst in many cases some facial redness may not necessary indicate any underlying dermatological condition it can nevertheless be a disturbing symptom to most people. It is important that a correct diagnosis of the facial redness is made by the dermatologist first prior to treatment.
Facial redness can be physiological after an exercise or a heat sensation or following a spicy meal. Usually once the physiological trigger is removed the facial redness largely disappears. Persistent redness or facial redness associated with symptoms such itching or a burning and tingling sensation should warrant investigation.
A common dermatological cause for facial redness is a disease called rosacea. This is a condition characterised by redness that typically affects the central part of the face such as the nose and cheeks. The redness in rosacea is initially transient and in later stages becomes fixed and permanent. Typical triggers for the flushing component of rosacea include spicy food, alcohol and heat. Treatment of rosacea is through identifying and elimination the trigger factors, correct use of appropriate sunscreen, appropriate skincare regimen, topical or oral medication as required by the severity of the condition and laser treatments for the redness. Laser treatments with the pulsed dye laser or intense pulsed light (IPL) are very effective in reducing and controlling the redness in rosacea. These lasers can also be used in redness that simply arises from long-term sun exposure or after acne where in some individuals the redness persists.
Facial redness can also be caused as a result of irritation to the skin if certain products or skincare routines are used, particularly excessively. These include the use of exfoliants, retinols or acid or alcohol-based products particularly in individuals with sensitive skin. Using a hydrating moisturizer ad strengthening the skin barrier with products containing niacinamide/nicotinamide or ceramides is important.
There are a number of topical prescriptive or over the counter creams either as medication or skincare products that can be used specifically for facial redness and these can be discussed with the dermatologist. Botulinum toxin (Botox) injections can also be used in the treatment of flushing and redness of the face.