Back in the Day
Remember being a teenager and waking up on the morning of a big date, only to see a zit the size of a softball lighting up your chin? I’d scrub my face, swab on the witch hazel, and then the latest cure-all acne treatment advertised in Seventeen magazine. Next came my makeup. First was a concealer that went on in a pale shade of green. Over that, I slathered on foundation. Back in the day, foundation came in light, medium and dark. On my sallow skin, it always looked a little orange. I’d finish off with a pressed powder that was always way too white. By then I looked like I was ready for the circus, and my chin still had a giant bump!
Will my Skin Ever Grow Up?
Well, I’d like to tell you that I grew out of all that, but not really. By the time I started working, I was down to a few manageable pimples at a time. I maintained a regimen of twice daily gentle face washing, light astringent and moisturizer for the dryer areas that my face was starting to have. On my wedding day I was still hiding zits, and when I became pregnant, it was like being a teenager again! I remember one year for my birthday, my mom and husband took me to a cosmetics counter to get a consultation and some makeup – a special treat every new mom needs. Well, my skin was so bad that the cosmetician took one look at me and said she couldn’t sell me anything until I had seen a dermatologist! That was not a happy day.
I did see a doctor and finally, in my late 30s, my skin was clear. Well, you know how it goes. No sooner had I looked in the mirror and said, “Wow! My skin is finally grown up!” than it started to look bumpy and red.
Here We Go Again
One day I noticed that I looked like I was blushing http://gty.im/110755809 and embarrassed after I had given a presentation. After cooking dinner, my face got hot, red and itchy. The next day, I walked in a gusty wind and came home with itchy eyes and a red face. Something was definitely up.
My mom and I sat down to talk and I learned that what she and I both have is called Rosacea. It’s not acne, but is often referred to as adult acne. It is a skin condition that causes all of the symptoms I was having, and can even make your nose red and thick, a condition called rhinophyma.
According to the Mayo Clinic (http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/rosacea), temperature extremes, spicy food, stress and sunlight are some of the possible triggers of the inflammation. A dermatologist can diagnose rosacea and prescribe appropriate antibiotics and treatments. By listening to what your face is telling you, and trying to minimize the triggers, you can successfully manage your rosacea and face the world with confidence.