How I Cured Rosacea – 6 Steps

Rosacea Cure

When my dermatologist confirmed that I had rosacea, over 2 years ago, I already knew my fate.  As she continued on about the topical and pill medicine she’d be prescribing me to help manage the symptoms, I couldn’t help but feel the heat in my cheeks get worse as a lump in my throat formed.   Uncurable.  Just such a horrible thing to hear, ever.

So I returned home and tried the pills and creams.  After awhile of seeing no relief and worrying incessantly about the chemicals going into my body, I tossed the prescriptions and began scouring the internet for any signs of hope.  And so I began trying every single remedy under the sun, from raw honey on my face (to preperhation H, haha), to drinking apple cider vinegar, to even buying le mer face lotion! It took a few more months before I found a combination of approaches that worked for me. But I never once dreamed of curing it, only ever hoping to manage my rosacea.

And while my symptoms had definitely lessened after a few months on this path, one glass of wine or hot yoga class could put me right back to my worst.  A few more months passed, and I can remember staring in the mirror and thinking that I hadn’t noticed any rosacea in a few days. Then it was a few weeks. And then a few months.  And now it’s been a year, and not one time has my rosacea came back. Seriously.


So here’s what I did, in what I consider order of importance.  However, I truly believe it was a combination of all 6 steps that finally got me Rosacea-free for good.


Real talk.  Your face is a window to your gut.  If you’ve got digestive issues, chances are you’ll see it on your cheeks (not those cheeks).  I know it’s the last thing you want to hear.. and believe me a restricted diet is hard, it nearly feels impossible, but when you’ve hit rosacea rock bottom, you’ll just about try anything.  And that’s where I found myself when I started a gentle 2 month diet consisting of basically only boiled foods:

YES:  Breakfasts of oatmeal with bananas cooked right in there, lunch of baked sweet potatoes, dinner would be some crockpot stew of chicken, rice, veggies and bone broth.

NO: alcohol (ugh), coffee (ugh), dairy, gluten, raw veggies and fruit (especially hard to digest ones like kale!), processed foods, and nothing spicy or too ‘saucy’.

It’s also important to start taking a good probiotic.  I love the brand Garden of life.  And putting fresh grated ginger and turmeric in my morning tea to help with inflammation.

Lastly, you need to keep a food journal.  It’s vital to figuring out your individual trigger foods.  I learned that I couldn’t eat eggs without a reaction (or wine, chocolate, and coffee for that matter). Keep a journal of what you eat, when your face reacts, and your bowel movements (what, I prefaced this whole point with ‘real talk’).  Eliminate any trigger foods immediately.



About 6 months into the worst of my rosacea, I discovered LED facials.  Following a very gentle facial cleanse and massage, the tech places this mask over your face.  Green light pulsates into your skin, effectively calming it.  I am lucky enough to live nearby a spa (Privileged of Beverly Hills) that was running a special for 3 LED facials for $100, so I was able to schedule one every month for nearly a year.  I generally noticed the results within a day or two and felt their effects last for weeks.  Now that my rosacea has subsided, I still get an LED maintenance facial now 2-3 times per year.   On amazon, I have seen LED facial at home light kits.  I’ve never tried using one, but I imagine them to be much less powerful than the salon version.  However, you can use it daily, so maybe the benefits even out.   If you have given the at home light a try, please let me know in the comments!


If you’re putting fragrance and chemicals on your face, exfoliants, peels, acids… whatever…, your face will react.  Rosacea skin is uber sensitive and so dry, but most of all it’s irritated.  We need a face care regiment that’s going to heal, not worsen the problem.  From countless hours and hours pouring through blog posts just like this one, I finally decided to go with Paula’s Choice overnight cream and day lotion.  The line I swear by is specifically designed for dry rosacea or acne affected skin.  It is gentle, soothing and effective.  And seriously, I didn’t get any product from them, I really just feel indebted to the brand for helping me out seriously horrible skin. Another brand I like is Cerave.  It’s hypoallergenic and light on the skin. Both Paula’s Choice & Cera Ve add sunscreen to their day creams, which is essential for rosacea sufferers.  The sun is seriously not your friend.


For face cleanser, I just use Trader Joe’s cleansing oil.  It’s cheap and gentle with no added bullshit.   But at the height of my woes, I wasn’t wearing much makeup to take off at night anyways. Speaking of makeup…



I know you know that thick chemical laden foundations clog pores.  But I also know the feeling that you have to cake on the foundation to even feel comfortable leaving your house.  It’s a vicious cycle.

What I found that worked for me is bb creams specifically formulated to fight acne.  The salicylic acid in the acne-fighting is just enough to help keep irritation down, so your ‘foundation’ will actually be working for you all day instead of working against you.   Doesn’t quite matter which brand you use, but I found success with Maybelline dream BB Pure.



At the first sign of stress, red hot bumps would stretch across my cheeks, burning.  I noticed this especially when I felt anxious to meet a deadline, but also when I was expending all my energy in high-intensity workout classes.  I (grudgingly) switched from cycling, HIIT and crossfit to gentle yoga, stretching, pilates and hiking. I learned to eat mindfully, to take deep breaths, and to finally log more than 6 measly hours each night.



It didn’t take me too long to figure out that sun exposure brought out the very worst in my Rosacea.  What did take a little longer was putting two and two together that my tea was firing up my cheeks from the hot steam.  Try to avoid sun, saunas, steam rooms, extreme heats and even too hot (and too spicy!) foods.







  1. Sorry about your condition, I’ve never heard of rosacea before, how do you get it and I assume that it hurt as it doesn’t like the sun

    • chelseagilson Says: November 4, 2017 at 11:00 pm

      It’s got a genetic link and certain nationalities are more susceptible to it than others. It never hurt, but would feel very warm and a very slight burning sensation.

  2. Hi, thank you very much for sharing your story! Are you able now to eat raw food again? All the best for you,
    Greetings Susanne

  3. Susanne Marti Says: October 16, 2017 at 6:07 pm

    Hi, thank you very much for your information about rosacea! What products from Paula Choice do you use? Thank you in advance for your time,

    best regards


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *