Know your skin

Know Your skin

Rosacea vs Acne Vulgaris - Know The Difference


If you’ve ever had to deal with painful acne and you searched online for answers, chances are you probably came across acne vulgaris. But did you know that there’s another type of acne known as acne rosacea, which is often misdiagnosed as acne vulgaris. 

While acne vulgaris affects approximately 9.4% of the world's population with the highest prevalence in adolescents, rosacea affects approximately 10% of the population.

So, if the treatment you’re on doesn’t seem to have an effect on your pimples, it is likely that you might be dealing with rosacea. However, before you book an appointment at your dermatologist’s office, read further to know more about the causes, symptoms and treatments for it.

Both conditions may seem similar in appearance at a glance, but they’re very different in the way they affect your skin. There are a few signs to watch out for to differentiate between acne vulgaris and rosacea.

Acne :

  • The areas more likely to be affected include the face, jawline, neck, upper back, chest or shoulders.
  • The different types of acne include blackheads, whiteheads, pimples, painful/stubborn cysts and nodules with the redness being limited to the area around your breakouts.
  • Oily skin on your whole face, more noticeably around your T-zone, aka, forehead, nose, and chin is a sign of acne, along with unevenly textured and scarred skin caused due to picking or other abrasive methods one might’ve used.

Rosacea :

  • It affects the face and eyes, with the redness extending to your scalp, neck, chest or upper back.
  • These breakouts look like pimples but have no blackheads. Instead, they make the pores appear larger with visible inflamed blood vessels and cause a burning or itching reaction to skin care products, makeup, or perfume.
  • It also causes eye problems like bloodshot eyes, red and swollen eyelids, and discomfort. Redness caused by rosacea shows on your cheeks, forehead, nose, or chin and can be temporary or permanent.

While acne is caused when excess oil production causes hair follicles to clog with dead skin bacteria, rosacea is a recurring condition where facial blood vessels enlarge due to triggers like sun exposure/heat, stress, eating and drinking habits, among other things. 

Tips To Prevent Rosacea Flare Ups:

  • Keep your skincare routine simple. Avoid products containing menthol, camphor, sodium lauryl sulphate and alcohol, as these can be too harsh on your skin if you’re dealing with rosacea. Use a face wash that doesn’t irritate your skin.
  • Use proper sun protection like hats, silk scarves and sunscreen (with SPF 30 or above) to protect your skin from the heat. Choose fragrance-free sunscreens with active ingredients zinc oxide and titanium dioxide to avoid skin irritation.
  • If stress is one of your triggers, you can try meditation, exercise and other methods that’ll help you relax. However, if physical activities are part of your de-stressing routine, try avoiding heating up your body in any way possible.
  • Change your drinking habits by quitting or minimising the consumption of alcohol and caffeine. As spicy food can also trigger rosacea, try opting for milder options and observe if it reduces your flareup. 

Usually acne and rosacea appear separately, there may be instances where some patients might have both the conditions. Acne may go away eventually but to prevent rosacea flareup, you need to manage your triggers. 

If you think you may have the above-mentioned signs and triggers of rosacea, it’s best to talk to your dermatologist and/or have a second opinion to determine your acne type and its solution.

Categories: ACNE

Disclaimer This blog solely intended for the educational/informational/awareness purposes and is not a substitute for any professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult your doctor/healthcare professional before acting on the information provided on the blog. Reliance on any or all information provided in the blog, is solely at your own risk and responsibility. Mankind Pharma Limited shall not be held liable, in any circumstance whatsoever.