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6 Korean Skin Care Products That Can Help Calm Rosacea

Known for their soothing and moisturizing properties, K-beauty products are great for those dealing with rosacea. Here, one writer shares her personal favorites.

It took a long time for me to recognize that the random splotchy redness that often appears on my cheeks — especially when it’s very hot or very cold out — isn’t acne or just how my skin is. It’s rosacea, a common skin condition that causes redness on the nose, chin, cheeks, or forehead.

Up until recently, I thought rosacea only affected those with very fair or pale skin, but apparently rosacea can happen to anyone, even a brown-skinned Latina like me. A number of things can trigger it from the weather, environmental factors, food or alcohol, to sun exposure, and even stress.

Rosacea doesn’t discriminate but the good news is, once you learn what you’re dealing with, treating and calming it is easier than you’d think. The trick for me has been finding products that cater to super sensitive skin while also bringing down redness. Contrary to popular, or what I’d like to call misinformed belief, K-beauty can do wonders when it comes to rosacea. In fact, I’ve found quite a few products that have been such game changers that on most days, you wouldn’t even know that I have rosacea. 

Cleanser

I’ve been double cleansing for a while but like I always say, not all cleansers are created equal. I noticed a major difference after I switched to an oil cleanser that’s specifically designed for oily and sensitive skin types. I’m obsessed with the Hanskin Pore Cleansing Balm [PHA] ($20). It keeps excess oil away while also calming my skin. A product that contains natural surfactants like the Commleaf Rice Purifying Foaming Cleanser ($29) is great water-based cleanser to follow with. It’s free of alcohol and artificial fragrances, and full of soothing and moisturizing plant-based ingredients.

Toner

These days, most toners aren’t filled with alcohol or harsh ingredients, but if you struggle with rosacea or sensitive skin, you’ll want to opt for an extra gentle formula that’s designed to soothe and calm. The Dr. Oracle A-Thera Toner ($32) works to instantly calm redness and inflammation. It also helps keep skin hydrated while it heals. This is perfect for anyone who struggles with rosacea, acne, or skin sensitivities. 

Masks

If you’re struggling with inflamed skin, I highly recommend using products with aloe vera like the Benton Aloe Soothing Mask Pack ($24). It comes with 10 lightweight sheet masks that are packed with aloe vera and green tea to soothe and repair irritated skin while also providing a generous boost of moisture. I especially love using these when I’ve been out in the sun for a little too long. 

Clay masks are great for detoxing your skin or drawing excess oils or impurities from your skin, but they can be harsh on the rosacea-prone. That doesn’t mean you have to forego clay masks all together though. The RE:P Bio Fresh Mask With Real Calming Herb Mask ($32) is made with kaolin, a gentle mineral clay. This mask is also formulated with gentle herbs like crushed calendula and chamomile that calm irritated skin, reduce redness and inflammation, and aid in helping your skin to quickly recover. I’m 100 percent sold on this one. 

Exfoliator

Just because you have rosacea doesn’t mean you have to skip out on exfoliating. Opt for a gentle chemical one that’s formulated with soothing ingredients as well. I love Neogen’s Dermalogy Real Cica Pad ($20) because it contains PHAs (a gentler alternative to AHAs) and calming centella asiatica. 

Mist

I keep both hormonal acne and rosacea in check with the COSRX Low pH PHA Barrier Mist ($21). It’s formulated with coconut fruit extract and PHAs to help keep my skin’s pH at the optimal level so my skin can fight inflammation. I spray this one daily after cleansing.

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