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Red alert

fashion-and-trends Updated: Sep 04, 2008 15:22 IST
Neha Sharma
Neha Sharma
Hindustan Times
Highlight Story

The likes of former US president Bill Clinton and pop superstar Mariah Carey suffer from rosacea. Estimated to affect over 45 million people worldwide, rosacea is most common in very fair-skinned people, say experts. The condition is characterised by redness of the face, pimples, lumps on the nose and red gritty eyes.

While the real cause of this has not been pinpointed by the medical community, hot and humid weather — as it is now in Delhi — does trigger acute redness. Although the condition affects both sexes, it is three times more common in females. Dr Anup Dhir, senior cosmetic surgeon, Apollo hospital, says, “It usually affects the central and lower part of the face. Nodules and pustules can form later. My patients are fair-skinned north Indians and I advise them to look for triggers and avoid them — exposure to extremely hot and cold temperature, windy weather, spicy food, perfumed beauty products.”

Regular use of sunscreen with high SPF is recommended, adds Dr Dhir. Beauty expert Shahnaz Husain says that the condition can be controlled with the right measures. She suggests using a mild cleanser, glycerine soap and the use of cosmetics only on the advice of a dermatologist. “Avoid scrubs and products with alcohol. Cold milk on the face can give some relief.”

Dr Seema Malik, MD, Eleganza skin rejuvenation clinic, says that one should avoid dehydration, steroids and drugs that dilate the blood vessels. “Drink lots of water. Avoid perfumed and highly moisturised products. Don’t massage your face,” she says. Though you can control rosacea for the time being, the treatment is long-term. Says Dr Dhir, “Tetracycline antibiotics and topical metronidazole gel is the first line of treatment for papules and pustules.” Beauty products to counter rosacea should be rich in vitamin C, honey and zinc oxide, which calm the skin.

Vandana Sundra, marketing head, Eminence, says that rose and maze exfoliation mask, sweet red rose toner and serums with antiseptic quality control the condition. To conceal red patches on the skin, use a concealer with a green tint, says Samantha Kochhar, creative director, Blossom Kochhar College of Creative Arts and Design, and skin and make-up expert. “The patches become more inflammatory for those who sweat. They can calm the skin down with acne pack, aloe vera gel, calamine lotion, chamomile and lavender oil,” suggests Kochhar.