I have rosacea. Not severe, and I don't get any form of acne or breakout, just a lot of flushing. My mom has it, and I'm of Irish and Scottish descent on my mom's side and rosacea has been called "the curse of the Celts." I am cursed.
I'm also getting older, and the products that worked for me either don't work anymore or aren't made anymore (oh, Aromaleigh skincare how I miss thee!). So, since I have raging PMS that seems to have demolished all forms of impulse control, I went to my happy place, the Chanel counter at Nordstrom, the other day, to see if maybe a new nail polish color would make me feel better.
They were slow, and Arlette was sure she could help my dry, irritated skin, so she gave me a mini-facial and a bag full of samples of products. My skin felt like silk. It didn't hurt, wasn't red, wasn't tight, and honestly, my skin looked five years younger.
But now, three days later? I have slight breakouts on my chin, lip, and nose, and one on my cheek, and I remember why I've always had so much trouble using even the most expensive department store products: Because they irritate my skin.
The problem is, the products that don't irritate my skin also don't seem to make my skin feel beautiful and soft. It's like I can have dehydrated, flaking skin that's prone to flushing, or I can have soft, supple skin with little red bumps on it.
I know many of you will swear by various supplements and the consumption of vast amounts of water. I already drink a lot of water -- I couldn't possibly drink more and not explode. I also eat a diet rich in healthy fats, and take a fish oil supplement.
I don't take evening primrose oil or anything like that, as I've been concerned about the pro-inflammatory effects of Omega-6 fatty acids, but I'm considering it, as I've had two or three bad menstrual cycles in the last year and given that I'm 48, I'm wondering if my hormones aren't starting to turn on me. Which I hear makes rosacea worse, so I'm just thrilled.
I just spent some time reading product reviews on the web, and it seems to me that many of the products made for rosacea are very much aimed at younger women with oily skin, rather than women like me whose skin is very dry. My mother also has very dry, dehydrated, sensitive skin, and her rosacea is a bit worse than mine (presumably because she is 23 years older than I am, and also because she doesn't take as good care of her skin as I do of mine because she actually has a life and isn't vain and self-absorbed like I am).
I have no idea what to try next. The Chanel people at Nordstrom are the nicest people on earth and asked me to come in and let them look at my skin, and see if there isn't one single product that might be causing this problem, rather than the whole line. I'm pessimistic, but Chanel has always been tried and true for me as far as makeup goes -- and I have a history of irritation with makeup, too, so that track record does mean something. Since I'm just using samples, this hasn't cost me anything yet (other than, you know, the $24 I spent on nail polish), so I'm willing to give it a try.
But in the meantime, I'm hoping that by throwing this out into the blogosphere, some kind person googling or tracking Neova R2, DermDoctor, or any of the many other products intended for rosacea without acne and in aging or dry skin will come by and say, "I had your exact problem, in fact, I'm your twin sister seperated from you at birth, and I know exactly what products you need."
Because I want it all, dear readers. I want my dewy soft baby butt skin and no redness or bumps. Is that too much to ask?