Redness, rosacea, and couperose all share a common symptom: red skin. This similarity often leads to confusion between these different skin conditions. So, what is the difference between redness, rosacea, and couperose? This article provides some answers.
Redness, rosacea, couperose: what's the difference?
- What are the differences between redness, rosacea, and couperose?
- What are the ways to mitigate them?
What are the differences between redness, rosacea, and couperose?
One is physiological, the other is pathological.
Redness is a physiological condition in which the face, or other parts of the body, take on a more or less intense red color. This phenomenon indicates a significant blood flow, when the blood capillaries that irrigate the skin excessively dilate at the level of the dermis. They are generally observed on hypersensitive skin, due to an altered skin barrier and hyper-reactivity of sensory fibers, whereas they would not necessarily have manifested on normal skin.
Unlike physiological redness, the rosacea is a disease chronic skin condition that can manifest in 4 different forms: vascular, ocular, papulopustular, or hypertrophic. The presence of facial redness, due to an exaggerated reaction of the blood vessels, is the common point among the 4 forms, but other symptoms may appear.
Rosacea , specifically couperose rosacea , is the most common form of this skin condition. It is characterized by temporary (erythema) or permanent (erythrosis) redness, accompanied by the development of small, thin, red or purple blood vessels on the skin's surface. These vessels become visible to the naked eye, a condition known as telangiectasias.
Thus, redness is a skin manifestation of physiological origin, while rosacea is a skin disease. Couperose, on the other hand, is a form of rosacea.
Redness appears as a red skin. For normal skin, the redness subsides within a few minutes, while for sensitive skin, it can persist for a few days to a few weeks.
In the case of rosacea and couperose, we observe not only temporary redness but also permanent redness (erythrosis). These erythroses are also accompanied bysmall, thin blood vessels, red or purplishvisible to the naked eye. There is also a form of rosacea, papulopustular rosacea, characterized by the appearance of skin lesions, usually inflamed papules and/or pustules and sometimes painful on the skin surface in addition to the redness. These lesions are often confused with acne.
extra-cutaneous signs associated with rosacea such as hot flashes , ocular involvement (ocular rosacea).
Note : Ocular rosacea can sometimes precede skin involvement. It presents in the form of conjunctivitis, eye irritation, eyelid inflammation (blepharitis), watery red eye (conjunctival hyperemia), burning sensation, dryness with a feeling of a foreign body in the eyes, and light sensitivity (photophobia).
Redness, being physiological, generally manifests as a redder skin tone. On the other hand, rosacea, being a disease, presents additional symptoms that complicate the daily lives of those affected..
What are the ways to mitigate them?
Use cosmetics that contain healing agents, soothing agents, anti-inflammatory agents and vasoconstrictors (beta-glucan, hemp oil, azelaic acid, niacinamide, Centella asiatica, allantoin, bisabolol, calendula macerate, etc...).
Redness is typically observed in hypersensitive skin with a compromised skin barrier. Therefore, opt for treatments that strengthen the skin barrier, ensuring protection against external aggressions.
In order to fade/mask redness, you can use a green-colored complexion corrector.
There are aesthetic treatments available such as vascular laser, Flash lamps, or even Kleresca photo-modulation. Do not hesitate to consult a dermatologist if the redness persists.
Reducing rosacea and telangiectasia:
Rosacea is a skin disease, thus a consultation with a dermatologist is essential. Depending on your type of rosacea, the dermatologist will prescribe a suitable treatment for you.
In the case of couperose, which is the most common form of rosacea, a brimonidine-based gel is to be applied locally.
In parallel, the doctor can utilize physical treatments such as the laser (the KTP laser, pulsed dye lasers, and the Nd Yag laser). The laser allows to diminish the redness and the visible telangiectasias of rosacea. It appears that the laser may reduce the recurrence of the disease.