What Is Rosacea?

Rosacea is a common skin condition that leads to flushing or persistent redness on the face. The redness is an early sign and may resemble a blush or sunburn that doesn’t fade. It can also cause enlarged blood vessels and small, pus-filled bumps. The symptoms of rosacea are:
  • Facial redness and flushing
  • Visible veins on the nose and cheeks
  • Swollen bumps that resemble acne on the face, chest, and the back
  • Eye problems (dry, irritated, and swollen eyes)
  • Burning sensation
  • Enlarged nose due to the thickening on the nose, leading to rhinophyma (most common in men)

Rosacea affects more than 16 million Americans and is characterized by flare-ups and remissions. While the exact causes of rosacea remain unknown, medical therapy and lifestyle adjustments can effectively control its signs and symptoms. Dermatologists recommend avoiding triggers, using sun protection, and applying light cosmetics to mask redness. Procedures such as laser therapy and dermabrasion can reduce symptoms and improve skin appearance.

What Are the Causes of Rosacea?

The exact causes remain uncertain, but a combination of hereditary and environmental factors contributes to rosacea. Some common triggers include:


It tends to be more severe in men, especially among those of northern or Eastern European descent. Women are prone to developing rosacea as well.

Fair skin

People with lighter skin tones are at a higher risk compared to those with darker skin.


Those who are 30 years old and above are more likely to experience rosacea.

Family history

A genetic predisposition may play a role.

Various triggers

These include hot drinks, spicy foods, alcohol, extreme temperatures, sunlight, wind, emotional situations, strenuous exercise, cosmetics, and certain medications (ex: blood pressure medication).

Skin and hair care products

Certain cosmetics, skin creams, and hair care items may contain ingredients that can aggravate rosacea. Some makeup products can worsen symptoms as well.