Please note that all fields marked with an asterisk (*) are required
My Red Face
Published on 21 June 2017 by Sabrina Homewood, Assistant Marketing Manager, updated on 28 June 2017
As a teen, I had very limited access to make-up. My mum was very protective of my skin and wanted to make sure I didn’t ‘plaster it on’ and end up with awful skin which I would regret for the rest of my life. My mum has great skin. Don’t get me wrong, I was allowed make-up but it couldn’t just be “any old rubbish” and I wasn’t allowed foundation, only on special occasions.
Unfortunately however, this careful consideration for my skin did not stop me developing what I now know is acne rosacea at the age of 19. I enjoyed 1 good year at uni before my cheeks started to glow a good shade of rouge. The cause? Could have been any one or combination of things; poor diet, lack of sleep, alcohol, stress, hormones, wearing more make-up, who knows! I did have a good solid skincare routine and always had my mum’s mantras ringing in my head “you’ll regret it if you wreck your skin now”. But it decided to take me down hard!
Over the next 2 years at uni my skin got more and more red and eventually developed into having sore and painful lumps, bumps and spots on my cheeks, chin and forehead. It was heart-breaking. I tried all different serums, creams and skincare routines, taking advice from therapists and friends who had had similar problems.
After uni I decided enough was enough as it had spread to my chest and visited my GP, he prescribed a cream which worked for a short while but eventually started to smart and sting when I put it on (not a good sign!). I was then prescribed some tablets but I was told I would have to take them for 2 years in order to see a result. 2 YEARS! I just couldn’t wait that long.
Since then, bearing in mind I am now 28, I have carried on trialling and testing lots of rosacea treatments and products with no luck. I wear make up every day as I just can't bare to go without and reveal my awful skin to the big wide world (the photos above are a big deal!). That is until I started working at One Stop Doctors!
Our Aesthetics Manager, Ridah Syed immediately noticed that I was not happy with my skin and wanted to help (and show what her and her team could do!). Although a little sceptical at first (I mean I felt like I had tried everything!) I eventually agreed to a consultation and treatment plan.
Initially there were some obvious (I now know they were obvious but sometimes you need someone to tell you these things!) changes I needed to make in my skincare to start things off.
Firstly, I needed to have my own ‘face towel’ at home, no more drying off with the hand towel or my bath towel, I needed a face towel just for me – I promptly purchased a lovely pink hand towel, just for my face.
I needed to wash my make-up brushes more – weekly at least was the advice! I now try to do it twice a week.
Change your face wash to one tailored for people with rosacea – sorted, I purchased a lovely one from our Epionce range, smells lush!
If moisturiser irritates it, stop using it! Everyone’s skin is different and your skin obviously doesn’t like it! – moisturiser stopped and only used when my face was dry.
Next was my treatment plan and my lovely aesthetician Fortunata recommended a course of at least 10 Dermalux light therapy treatments to fight the bacteria causing the spots and irritation and then some laser treatment to sooth the rosacea, followed with a very subtle and gentle skin peel course.
I had my first Dermalux treatment a couple of weeks later and frankly it was lovely. Fortunata cleaned my face with the same cleanser I now used at home which was very relaxing, placed some little plastic goggles over my eyes and positioned the Dermalux machine over my face. She asked if I got claustrophobic at all because it does come close to your face but to be honest once my eyes were closed, I wouldn’t have had a clue where it was. Once switched on, it was like lying on the beach in the sun, a very calming warm glow on my face. I almost fell asleep. 20 minutes later she applied some SPF cream and a barrier cream and off I went. I was advised to not put make-up on for the rest of the day if I could help it but if I needed to that was fine as long as it was mineral make up.
When I first looked in the mirror when I got home, I’ll be honest, I was a little shocked at how red I was. The barrier cream had also made me very shiny so it wasn’t a great look but only a couple of hours later and it had all settled down and my skin was back to its normal rouge shade.
I knew I wouldn’t see any immediate results, I mean my treatment plan was for at least 10 sessions, but I felt like I was on my way to clearer skin!
Eight sessions in (at least 2 a week) and I could clearly see a change in my skin. It was far less bumpy, spotty and angry and although I still had rouge cheeks, without the spots, it felt more like natural blusher!
Had a slight set back when I went on holiday to Thailand - heat doesn't agree with my skin it seems but now I am back on track.
Fingers crossed that if I keep at it, even the red will go and I will be back to my clear, unblemished 18-year-old face (maybe with just 10 years of ageing!)
Look out for my next instalment to see how I am getting on…
To book a consultation and investigate the amazing treatments on offer at One Stop Doctors simply call our friendly team on 0800 852 1234.