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Rosacea usually develops after 30. Well, so do wrinkles! And it really makes it difficult to find anti-aging products to use on rosacea skin. When your major concern is facial redness, which is all day every day, anti-aging products become secondary. I mean, how are we supposed to do all those cool anti-aging stuff like stimulating skin turnover when our skin always has a chip on its shoulder?
Anti-aging is tricky even for normal skin. It’s more challenging when you have rosacea and your skin’s always bothered by something. The sun, the cold, emotional distress, a glass of wine…
The good news is finding the best anti-aging products for rosacea is not impossible. It just requires a little bit of knowledge of your skincare ingredients, some workaround to avoid irritation, and some skincare rules to follow.
If you’ve ever seen a dermatologist for your rosacea, you know that even dermatologists don’t have a cookie-cutter approach. There is always a period where they test out different ingredients and see how your skin reacts.
The same rule applies when you’re trying to deal with wrinkles and sun damage on rosacea skin using topical skincare.
But no worries! There’s a wide variety of anti-aging products that are perfectly suitable for sensitive, and rosacea-prone skin. And we’ve got them all!
How I created This List & My Review Criteria
My rosacea is between type 1 and 2. And I’m in my late 30s so I have wrinkles, fine lines, and dark spots. And I follow a very strict anti-aging routine to manage those. I decide an anti-aging product is safe for rosacea if it doesn’t give me flare-ups when I use it at least 7 days in a row. Also, I prefer rich products as opposed to ‘minimal’ products as I like to have additional soothing ingredients in my products to mitigate potential irritation. I focus on ingredients with proven benefits and I like to look at a product as a whole instead of dismissing it just because it has fragrance. I also love feel-good products that are easy to layer and use during the day. So those are the ones I included below.
The Best Anti-Aging Products For Rosacea
Keep reading for the best anti-aging products for people with rosacea.
1. PCA Skin Sheer Tint Broad Spectrum SPF 45
Rich in antioxidants
First things first, prevention is key. Sunscreen is essential for your skin to prevent UV irradiation from damaging skin cells. Plus, sun exposure is a common trigger for rosacea that can cause itching, redness, and irritation (1). And there’s nothing more anti-aging than sun protection. This one is a tinted sunscreen.
It’s mineral and fragrance-free. So it’ll help you manage redness by evening out your skin as well as by preventing flare-ups. It’s perfectly safe for sensitive and rosacea skin. It also contains coenzyme Q10 for additional antioxidant protection to fend off free radicals.
It applies beautifully and gives you a sheer tint. If you’re too intimidated by mainstream anti-aging ingredients, invest in a rosacea-friendly sunscreen. That alone is enough to tackle aging and prevent the early formation of wrinkles.
2. Dr. Jart+ Pore Remedy PHA Exfoliating Serum
Made with gentle exfoliants
Visibly plumps fine lines
No visible peeling
This one is an amazing anti-aging product for rosacea and sensitive skin. It regulates skin turnover by exfoliating the top layer of your skin. Now, all chemical exfoliants do that. For rosacea, the trick is to find an acid that has a bigger molecular size.
That way, it doesn’t penetrate too fast and too deep, which is what causes irritation in the first place. This one is made with a polyhydroxy acid, namely gluconolactone. It gently exfoliates but also increases hydration and provides antioxidant benefits (2).
Additionally, the serum has vitamin B5 to soothe and plump up the skin and reduce the look of fine lines. Plus, it has macadamia seed oil to boost moisture and heal dry, flaky skin. It’s as light as water and my skin drinks it up instantly!
3. SkinMedica Retinol Complex 0.25
Effective formula that works
Retinol is the most effective anti-aging ingredient. It’s basically a constant skin renewal to achieve your best skin. But it’s pretty irritating for the skin and can cause dryness, redness, and stinging. Retinoids are prescribed for people with rosacea and I even used one.
But that doesn’t mean you can grab the first retinol product. When you take matters into your own hands, you need to know what to look for in your retinol product to use on rosacea skin. Start with a low-concentration formula that’s made with encapsulated retinol like this one.
Because encapsulated retinol absorbs slowly, which reduces irritation and potential side effects to a great extent. The fragrance-free serum gently retexturizes rosacea skin and regulates cell turnover. It stimulates collagen synthesis and repairs your skin on a deeper level.
It helps with hyperpigmentation, rough skin, wrinkles, and scars. It’s also enriched with several antioxidant-rich botanical extracts to soothe and nourish the skin. Plus, it has squalane for hydration as well as niacinamide and ceramides to help with dryness and barrier repair.
4. Kiehl’s Micro-Dose Anti-Aging Retinol Serum
This one is another anti-aging product you can use to improve the look of lines and wrinkles. And this is what I’m currently using. Even though the concentration is not clear, it has visibly softened my skin and helped me with my dark spots and large pores.
The main advantage of this retinol serum for rosacea is that it’s very creamy as opposed to runny and fast-absorbing. I think that’s why it causes no redness or irritation or visible peeling.
The emollient formula also contains ceramides and soothing peptides to protect the skin barrier and prevent retinol dryness.
As long as you properly and slowly introduce retinol into your skincare routine with a gentle formula, you don’t need to worry about irritation.
Quick Tip: Use the serum once a week at first and apply it over your moisturizer. Your skin will get a feel of it and can slowly build tolerance. After that, use it twice a week and then start applying it under your moisturizer. It’s all about making your skin get used to it. You can always work your way up. But if you start too fast and use too regularly, you’re going to set yourself back and have to wait for weeks to repair your damaged barrier.
Related: The Best Lactic Acid Serums For Gentle Exfoliation
5. SkinCeuticals Serum 10 AOX+
Gentle, effective antioxidant serum
Easy to layer
Antioxidants are important for neutralizing the effects of UV rays, pollution, and other stressors that compromise your skin’s health. Antioxidants also repair existing damage on the skin and promote collagen growth (3).
Compared to retinol or exfoliants, antioxidants are way more gentle on the skin and more beginner-friendly anti-agers to use when you have rosacea. One of the best-performing antioxidants is vitamin C. This one is a potent anti-aging serum for rosacea.
It has vitamin C, which is highly beneficial when dealing with inflammation and redness. Not to mention, it boosts collagen production and skin radiance! Additionally, it has ferulic acid to supercharge the antioxidant benefits.
With hyaluronic acid and provitamin B5, it soothes and hydrates. The face serum softens the look of wrinkles and lines. It also smooths out the face and improves your skin tone for a brighter and more radiant complexion.
Related: The Best Vitamin C Serums For Rosacea
6. Avene A-Oxitive Antioxidant Water-Cream
Perfect for dry, rosacea skin
Rich in antioxidants
Has a dewy finish
Here’s an illustration of how dryness affects rosacea. When your skin lacks moisture, it feels tight. Tightness leads to itching, redness, and bumps. Then you start to scratch. Those scratches cause micro-tears in the skin, which are tiny pathways to welcome bacteria that cause acne.
Those tiny leaks also let the water inside the skin out, causing transepidermal water loss. That leads to more dryness. As you can see from the pattern, dryness causes rosacea flares, and flares make dryness worse.
That’s why it’s important to maintain a healthy skin barrier with a good moisturizer. And this is a vitamin C cream perfect for fending off free radicals for rosacea skin. This is like the cream version of A-Oxitive Serum.
It packs hyaluronic acid, vitamin E, and thermal water to hydrate, repair the skin barrier, and boost moisture. It’s an amazing daily anti-aging moisturizer to use on rosacea skin to minimize fine lines, and achieve dewy, bouncy skin.
7. Amorepacific Vintage Single Extract Essence
Essence doubles as a serum
Visibly plumps and hydrates
Speaking of antioxidants, green tea is one of the most researched antioxidants to treat and prevent UV damage on the skin. It’s because of the abundance of polyphenols found in green tea. They block UV rays and provide the skin with an additional layer of antioxidants to cancel out free radicals.
The most important benefit of using green tea in your anti-aging products is its non-irritating nature. It means that you don’t need to resort to potentially irritating actives to anti-age.
This Korean essence is minimal, incredibly luxurious, and exclusive. It’s made with green tea extract to supercharge your skin to reduce the look of sun damage and wrinkles.
Plus, green tea is anti-inflammatory and soothing, which is great for rosacea sufferers. It not only helps with wrinkles, but also helps with facial redness, irritation, and inflammation.
8. Biossance Squalane + Phyto Retinol Serum
Great retinol alternative
Essential oils may irritate
Bakuchiol, a plant-derived ingredient, is currently the leading alternative to retinol. It’s because it’s proven to work like retinol and has retinol-like effects on the skin. But it doesn’t cause redness or irritation or dryness like retinol (4).
And this bakuchiol serum helps fight signs of aging on rosacea skin without irritation. It also packs hyaluronic acid, squalane, and niacinamide to prevent dryness and dehydration.
The whole thing is amazing for hydrating and plumping the skin while refining your complexion for a more youthful and lifted appearance.
It minimizes wrinkles, helps fade dark spots, and promotes collagen growth. Bakuchiol is a great alternative and a workaround for people who can’t tolerate retinol.
9. Beautycounter Countertime Antioxidant Soft Cream
Gentle bakuchiol cream
Great for all skin types
This one also has bakuchiol but in cream form. So if you’re not comfortable with using active ingredients in serum form, you can always opt for cream formulations that are gentler on the skin all thanks to added emollients.
The anti-aging cream addresses signs of aging with bakuchiol to gently soften textured skin without aggravating rosacea.
Moreover, the lightweight cream has shea butter and squalane to enhance moisture. They keep the skin in check and make sure it’s replenished with a good balance of humectants and emollients.
The additional antioxidants protect your skin from daily stressors. This one is a great option to amp up your anti-aging game without going in too harsh and causing sensitivity.
10. Caudalie Resveratrol Lift Firming Night Cream
Gentle antioxidant cream
Visibly plumps up wrinkles
Leaves skin glowing
Nighttime is a great time to help your skin recover from daily skin damage. At the same time, you need something very gentle and effective because you don’t want to wake up to irritated and red skin. This is one of my absolute favorite anti-aging night creams I can comfortably use on my rosacea skin.
It’s free of potentially irritating active ingredients but incredibly rich in botanical antioxidants. It has resveratrol as the main anti-ager to neutralize free radicals. This plant-derived antioxidant is so underrated but so helpful for rosacea skin that needs gentle ingredients to minimize wrinkles.
Also, the night cream is incredibly moisturizing for the skin because it has vegan collagen and hyaluronic acid. It literally plumps up fine lines and makes the skin glow. By the way, I can swear by every product in Caudalie’s Resveratrol line. So if you don’t want a night cream, you can definitely consider their resveratrol serum and day cream.
11. Versed Zero-G Smoothing Eye Cream
Affordable anti-aging eye cream
Can feel heavy
The first signs of aging usually start to appear around the eyes in the form of fine lines. To tackle crow’s feet without irritating the skin on the cheeks (or ocular rosacea, if you’re suffering from it), this peptide eye cream is a great one to add to your anti-aging routine.
The cream has a rich base made with olive oil to provide the ultimate moisture. Olive oil forms a protective layer on the skin around the eyes. And it keeps that area moisturized and plump all day.
That way, wrinkles, and fine lines appear softer and smoother. The eye cream also has signal peptides to regenerate collagen and firm up the skin. It leaves the eye area radiant and youthful.
This completes our list of the best anti-aging products for people with rosacea. Remember, sunscreen is essential! Also, many of the active ingredients make the skin more prone to sunburn. Always wear sunscreen to protect your new, smooth skin from getting sunburnt.
If you want to learn more, keep reading to find out what to look for in your products and how to choose them.
How to Choose Anti-Aging Products for Rosacea
Ingredients to Look for
You might think that your options are limited because of rosacea. However, know that there is more than enough.
You can still use retinol if you have rosacea. Retinoids are literally treatments for acne rosacea with some added anti-aging benefits. Look for encapsulated retinol or low-concentration retinol and use it sparingly.
Instead of alpha and beta hydroxy acids, use polyhydroxy acids like gluconolactone, lactobionic acid, and maltobionic acid for gentle exfoliation. Because exfoliation, when done right, is incredibly anti-aging.
Vitamin C is another majorly anti-aging ingredient that also helps with hyperpigmentation. But if ascorbic acid is too irritating for your skin, diversify. Try vitamin C alternatives like magnesium ascorbyl phosphate, which is way gentler.
There’s a sea of antioxidants that are not irritating at all. And some of them are natural, plant-based options like green tea, bakuchiol, and resveratrol. Additionally, you can use ingredients like vitamin E, Centella Asiatica, coenzymeQ10, colloidal oatmeal, and licorice root for an antioxidant-rich but still gentle anti-aging routine for rosacea.
Ingredients to Avoid
Anti-aging is still skincare. So the same rules apply here. In general, try to stick with hypoallergenic, and ideally fragrance-free, alcohol-free options to avoid flare-ups.
As you can see, there are anti-aging creams, serums, essences, and more. But, you should choose your product depending on how you want to do things in your anti-aging routine.
For example, if you want to use something as often as daily, then you should go for gentle and daily anti-aging creams or antioxidant serums. If you only want to use heavier ingredients, then go for retinol products and exfoliants.
Moreover, it’s better to stick with one product. For example, people with normal skin might engage in a full routine with an anti-aging cleanser followed by a similar serum and moisturizer.
However, this may be too much for people with rosacea. Focus on one thing. Start with a serum or maybe a night cream and see it through before introducing new products into your routine.
- Morgado-Carrasco, D., Granger, C., Trullas, C., & Piquero-Casals, J. (2021). Impact of ultraviolet radiation and exposome on rosacea: Key role of photoprotection in optimizing treatment. Journal of cosmetic dermatology, 20(11), 3415–3421. https://doi.org/10.1111/jocd.14020
- Grimes, P. E., Green, B. A., Wildnauer, R. H., & Edison, B. L. (2004). The use of polyhydroxy acids (PHAs) in photoaged skin. Cutis, 73(2 Suppl), 3–13.
- Addor F. A. S. (2017). Antioxidants in dermatology. Anais brasileiros de dermatologia, 92(3), 356–362. https://doi.org/10.1590/abd1806-4841.20175697
- Dhaliwal, S., Rybak, I., Ellis, S. R., Notay, M., Trivedi, M., Burney, W., Vaughn, A. R., Nguyen, M., Reiter, P., Bosanac, S., Yan, H., Foolad, N., & Sivamani, R. K. (2019). Prospective, randomized, double-blind assessment of topical bakuchiol and retinol for facial photoageing. The British journal of dermatology, 180(2), 289–296. https://doi.org/10.1111/bjd.16918
Read Next: The Best Exfoliators For Rosacea