Rosacea Triggers
Dermatologists’ Tips for Controlling Rosacea in Winter

Winter winds and cold weather are common triggers. If you find that your rosacea flares in winter, here are tips that can help diminish flare-ups:

  • Protect your face. Covering your face with a scarf or ski mask helps protect it from the wind and cold. Just make sure that if it touches your face, it is not made of wool or a fabric that feels rough to the touch. Wool and rough-feeling fabrics can irritate the skin.

  • Protect your eyes. Wear sunglasses that shield your eyes from both the UVA and UVB rays.

  • Apply sunscreen. The sun’s reflective powers are great year round — 17% on the sand and 80% on the snow. Applying a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or more on exposed skin helps protect your skin.

  • Use a barrier-repair product. Protective creams and other topicals that create a barrier on your skin help to shield it. Your dermatologist can help you find a product that does not irritate your skin.

  • Wear loose, layered clothing. This allows you to stay warm and remove layers as needed to prevent overheating.

  • Reduce indoor heating. Indoor heat can cause a flare-up. When possible set the thermostat to a temperature that does not trigger your rosacea.

  • Avoid sitting near a lit fireplace or stove. Becoming overheated often triggers rosacea.

  • Prevent heat from blowing on your face. When in a car, set the heat so that it does not blow directly on your face.

  • Limit consumption of heated beverages and alcohol. If these are triggers, limiting consumption or avoiding them can help.

  • Avoid hot showers, hot baths, saunas, and steam. All of these open blood vessels, which can cause rosacea to flare. Hot water also can irritate rosacea-prone skin. When possible, wash rosacea-prone skin with lukewarm water.

All content solely developed by the American Academy of Dermatology


Winter ushers in a number of conditions — from bitterly cold winds to extremely hot kitchens — that can cause rosacea to flare.






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Page last updated 2/20/09

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