rosacea

How to calm Rosacea flare-ups quickly

“Rosacea is known as a disorder of flare-ups and remissions, where symptoms come and go, so the goal is not only to decrease the severity and duration of flare-ups, but to maintain remission to increase the length of time between outbreaks,” – Dr. Julie Harper, clinical associate professor of dermatology at the University of Alabama-Birmingham.

Waking up with a Rosacea flare-up / breakout overnight isn’t the easiest thing to deal with… Here’s some of my tried and tested methods of how to get a Rosacea flare under control in the shortest time.

  1. Keep to the bare minimum
    My skincare only consists of a cleanser and an oil-free moisturiser, which is already the most basic. Some of us do have more intensive regimes filled with serums, lotions, oils, creams. Scrap them for the time being during a flare, and just stick to the bare minimum – which is cleanse and moisturise. This helps to let your skin breathe and also not make things any worse.
  2. Take fever medicine
    I discovered this when I got really ill some time ago, and realised that my skin cleared up with minimal redness. How strange! I usually look worse when I am ill. I looked at the meds and realise there’re two types of anti-inflammatory meds (one for sorethroat and the other being ibuprofen) that I took. It’s not really the most legit way but if taking fever medicine can calm a bad flush down, why not?
  3. Good quality sleep always helps
    When I say sleep, I mean good quality sleep. Sleep decreases stress levels and that’s something very important for someone who is stressed out with his/her outbreak. Do not overheat when you sleep. Many people tend to be addicted to warmth, meaning they wrap themselves up with a thick comforter even if it’s not really that cold. I am one of them. You’ll end up sweating while sleeping, leading to red, oily skin when you wake up in the morning. Keep ventilated and only use a thin blanket if it’s cold.
  4. Treat with an anti-inflammatory mask
    I use a highly anti-inflammatory mask when having a flare-up from Honeylab – Honevo Rosacea. Just spread a thin layer of kanuka honey and do my thing for a few hours, and the inflammation/redness is always greatly reduced. While doing the mask, try to relax, and drink a lot of water to flush out toxins.
  5. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate
    The most instinctive thing to do when one is flushing is to grab ice water and down it in an instant. But no, stay away from iced water. Your body uses more energy to heat up iced water, creating more heat in the body instead. Keep to regular temperature water. The trick is to drink and keep on peeing till your pee is clear. I notice when I have a flare-up, I will usually have dark yellow pee.

Even the strongest person can break down at times dealing with this condition. There is no cure. There is no remission forever. When it comes back, deal with it. Once you stop fighting, it consumes you – it doesn’t just stop there, it keeps getting worse.

Take care and keep fighting, fellow Rosaceans.

Is Tree Tree Oil for Sensitive Skin?

Tea-tree-oil-sensitive-skin-rosacea-review-ohhhoney-2016.jpg

So I recently took a break from work, and decided to try out Tea Tree Oil to help my sensitive, Rosacea skin that is prone to redness, surface dryness and breakouts.

I’ve heard a great many things about Tea Tree Oil and it’s antiseptic properties, and was excited about the benefits it could bring to my skin.

READ MORE (more…)

STRESSED UP

Not sure if it’s due to an exceptionally stressful period in my life right now, but I’m dealing with one of my worst outbreaks ever. Like painful and itchy big red zits over my cheek area, which I don’t usually have. These scars are going to take forever to fade *depressed*

Aside, I’m very thankful to my very patient bf who always listens to my complaints and tells me I’m still beautiful in his eyes (thank you b if you’re reading this).

Looking forward to BBQ with the guys on Saturday (hello yumsies food!).

Also, I’ve passed my probation at my new workplace (yay!) To be honest, I’m glad I made my mind up to step into an industry I’ve always wanted to try. I’ve definitely learnt more stuff in these 3 months than I did for my last 3 years. Looking forward to more events and knowing more media contacts!

Yupp, that’s basically all that’s happening in ma life right now. Update again soon xoxo

heavyhearted

I must admit, the recent bout of rashes is making me pretty depressed. I realise they usually act up when I have an important event coming. I think they’re out to make me feel like crap. For now, I think I will just hang out in a dark, moist cave and get some meditation done. Please get well soooooooooon. Can’t wait for exploring Saturdays and sunny Sundays again.

Before & After

Was sorting through my photo albums on the lappy and came across photos from last year’s trip to Taipei. It was my first trip overseas alone with B and I was extremely excited. But… was kinda depressed throughout the trip because of my face.

*Warning: graphical photos below, please exit right now if you don’t want to puke*

I have a skin condition called Rosacea diagnosed by a dermatologist. In Nov 2012, my face was breaking out, peeling & whatever all at once. It’s extremely painful and itchy and I couldn’t keep my mind off it.

My confidence was a negative 100% and I wanted to dig a hole and hide my face in it.

Here’re some shots taken with a DSLR. If you’re keen to find out what happened before I got to this stage, I wrote about my extremely frustrating skin journey here.

before_ohhhoney

When I came back to SG, I took the plunge to go see another dermatologist. I was so tired of being hopeful whenever I see a new doctor and having that hope crushed when they diagnose me with the same condition.

Truly thankful my derm from NSC managed to help me this time and she diagnosed me with not only Rosacea, but also Seborrheic dermatitis. That kinda explains why my skin did not get better using the Rosacea meds as they worsen the symptoms of the dermatitis.

So she treated the Seb derm first, and then tackled the rosacea. It worked.

I’ve stuck with a routine which works for me, or at least doesn’t aggravate my condition for the last couple of months. My skin’s not perfect now (still far away!) but I’m keeping my fingers crossed on it getting better.

Am still left with many reddish flat marks but thankfully no pitted/icepick scars. Still not comfy taking photos with DSLRs now but I’m putting these up for a fair comparison.
after_ohhhoney

Current routine (at the time of this post)

Am sharing what I am using so fellow rosaceans / people with sensitive skin can try them out!

CleanserBioderma (sensitive)
This is the best cleanser/makeup remover ever. You pour some on a cotton pad and wipe your skin. That’s it. No need to rinse. This cult french beauty product is one I can’t live without.

TonerHada Labo Lotion (Sensitive). The normal one breaks me out.

Moisturizer – nil

Mask – Alternate between Neutrogena / Hada Labo moisture masks. 3 times a week. Sometimes I slap on Laneige Water Sleeping pack before a special day.

Exfoliate – Organic home made yoghurt oatmeal mask. This made a major difference. Many beauty gurus swear by it.

SunblockLa Roche Posay Anthelios AC 30. Best sunblock ever recommended by Derm.

Supplement – Also been taking collagen supplements to moisturise from inside out! Not sure if they’re working but the brand I am taking is Meiji Amino Collagen.

Note: I am currently under the care of Trinity Medical Centre. For posts related to Trinity Medical Centre, click here.

Rant x skin woes

Okay, I really need to rant today. Please exit now if you’re 1) not in the mood for a rant or 2) gonna judge me

Stop breaking out you stupid skin! I’ve had enough of you!!!

Here’s why I feel so frustrated of the never-ending battle with my skin:

  • Starting breaking out in small bumps at 18/19
  • Started having persistent redness on my forehead, cheeks and chin
  • Tried many over the counter products but only made it worse
  • Developed into whiteheads/blackheads/red bumps all over (super gross)
  • Didn’t have the budget so went to see General Practitioners
  • One told me I had Acne and another told me I had Eczema. (Dear doctors, these two conditions are on the extreme opposite ends. Did you really graduate from medical school?)
  • Applied topical meds, took oral meds to no avail
  • Bought accutane, had no balls to take them due to severe side effects

Fast forward to 21:

  • Saw my first dermatologist at Mount Elizabeth Hospital
  • Diagnosed me with Rosacea, a chronic condition that had no cure
  • Started me on topical meds which targets rosacea
  • Great improvement and skin became much clearer after months of hard work
  • Boom! One day I woke up and had a full face of outbreaks again
  • Feeling despondent, I decided not to go back ever since

22/23:

  • Went to a Derm at a public hospital and got told: “Your rosacea is very serious. Take pills, no doubts about it!”
  • Bought the pills and skin products but did not use them
  • Started on TCM to recondition my body
  • Went to National Skin Centre and saw another Derm
  • Doctor diagnosed me with Rosacea and Seborrheic dermatitis
  • Treated the seborrheic dermatitis first and it went away
  • She suggested IPL if the topical meds didn’t work
  • It worked. Skin got a lot better and on my last visit, she told me I don’t need IPL cause it doesn’t even look like rosacea anymore
  • I started masking quite intensively cause I realised it made my skin better
  • The key I found, is hydration

So… why am I ranting today? Isn’t everything good now?

After all these years of struggles & pain, I am finally seeing some positive results. Many friends have also told me they saw an improvement. And I think I just destroyed it… by buying a clarisonic! #whyIsoitchyhandsfml

It’s been 2 weeks since I started using the clarisonic and I see all the nightmares coming back. Oilier skin, active breakouts (which I haven’t had in months!) and more exemplified redness using the same routine, just adding in the new clarisonic.

I read online that many people go through a purging phase when they get on the clarisonic cleansing system and that it is normal. I hope this nightmare will be over soon. I don’t wanna spend $200 on a face brush and destroy what I have improved over the past few years.

God… help me please OMG. I don’t have the energy to fight anymore. Pls skin, pls just be good now and be done with the purging soon! Gonna monitor and see. If not the clarisonic is going into the bin!! I will throw you away you monster rwarrrrrrrrrrrr

Okay, done with ranting. Feeling better now. Need to do some zen meditation tonight. All this worrying is giving me wrinkles.

Confessions of my depression

Have you ever felt you’re all alone in the world before? Hopeless.. and don’t see the meaning in living anymore?

People who told me they understand my pain… but no, they don’t cause they are not me. You can never truly understand someone else’s pain unless you have experienced it on your own.

I was never clinically diagnosed with depression, but I am quite certain I had it.

I was a happy and outgoing girl during my school days. Things changed when I started having problems with my skin.

I didn’t break out during puberty. I had clear skin while my friends were getting pimples. I was 18 years old when I felt changes to my skin.

I would keep blushing for no reason. My face remained permanently red. Then I had zits all over. The doctor told me it was Rosacea. There is no cause, and there is no cure.

I was only 21 years old.

I was embarrassed to face people whom I am not close to. I don’t look at people when we converse. I am afraid that all they will be looking at me were my imperfections rather than me as a person.

I became disinterested in studying. I shunned away from my closest friends without giving them any reasons. Everywhere I go, I would keep thinking that people were scrutinising me, my imperfections.

I didn’t want to do anything or even be outside. I wanted to stay at home where no one could see me.

I was lucky to have my special someone help me out of this mess. He would encourage me, accompany me to the Chinese doctor, Western doctor, and tell me that things will be alright.

My rosacea is still here to stay, but I have come to terms with it now. It is better after I started treatment and I hope it stays that way.

Also, positive thinking helps.

There are a lot of people in this world who are down with terminal illnesses from birth or born with disabilities.

I should stop and think about the people around me who are less fortunate. It puts my problems into perspective and I realised there’s actually much more to life than living in my own world and wallowing in self-despair.

DIY: Honey & Oatmeal Mask

Image

What do you do when you have a date later on at night and your skin looks like crap? Only one thing comes to my mind for these kind of situations – the honey oatmeal mask.

I have rosacea and seb derm, but this mask has helped me out lots. It’s so ridiculously good I hope that it might do the same for you.

Why Honey?
Honey has natural anti-oxidant and anti-microbial properties to help  protect our  skin from the damage of the sun’s rays, supports the skin’s ability to rejuvenate and refresh depleted skin, leaving it feeling silky soft and supple. One of the most common natural skin care benefits with honey is related to treatment of minor acne. It also works for other skin ailments like rosacea and seb dermatitis. (I use raw honey and not the supermarket kind of syrup honey as those have been processed. Raw honey contains all the goodness! You can find this in pharmacies or guardian stores)

Why oatmeal?
Oatmeal has anti-inflammatory properties and is perfect for most skin types, even the most sensitive skin. Oatmeal contains saponins, a cleansing agent, and can therefore be used as a mild soap. Oatmeal is moisturizing and helps remove dead skin cells. Oatmeal can also help treat acne, eczema, rosacea and rashes. (I use an oatmeal cleanser to wash my skin everyday by the way. It’s really wonderful! Just plain oatmeal will do, or organic ones will be good)

Follow the steps below:

Step 1: Get a clean bowl and a spoon

Step 2: place one scoop of honey and a handful of oats into bowl and stir (Yes, the mixture will be chunky and messy)

Step 3: Add a little bit of water to make the mixture slightly runnier (if you want it to be more soothing, use Avene thermal spring water instead)

Step 4: Refrigerate for 5-10 minutes

Step 5: Wash your face with warm water if not wearing makeup or sunblock. Remove all makeup before masking

Step 6: Dry your face and apply the mask. Leave it on for at least half an hour. I leave it on for 1 hour sometimes.

Step 7: Wet your face and gently rub your face in a circular motion.
The oatmeal will exfoliate your skin gently. Rinse with tepid water and pat dry.

Enjoy your smooth and radiant skin!

Check out my before-after pictures and skincare routine for rosacea HERE