Dermatologist Answers: Best Treatments for Facial Redness

Written by Jennifer Gordon, MD, Board Certified Dermatologist on June 10, 2020 No Comments

getting red of facial redness

Facial redness is a very common skin concern faced by both men and women. Whether you’re red from acne breakouts, rosacea, or your face simply flushes easily, dealing with skin redness can definitely be very irritating (pun intended).

Fortunately there are some relatively simple things you can try to calm the skin and reduce redness and irritation. Read on for some great tips of minimizing any type of facial redness, from periodic minor patches to severe daily occurrence.

Household remedies

It is important to note, that when applying homemade masks and other non-skincare products to your skin there is a risk of clogging pores and potential skin sensitivities. If trying any of these topical regimens, we recommend testing on a smaller area of the skin and minimize frequency of use.

Cucumber Facial Masks

While there is no scientific data linking cucumbers to soothing redness, it’s been a common household remedy throughout different cultures for hundreds of years; when a botanist/physician claimed cucumber relieved his redness in 1649.

To make a cucumber mask simply finely grate fresh cucumber (using a food processor tends to work best). Let the mask cool in the fridge before applying to areas of redness for 30 minutes.

Diet Changes

One way to minimize redness is to follow an anti-inflammatory diet. This can be a great solution for many as dietary changes can reduce the body’s natural systemic inflammation responses.

The basis of the diet is to consume cooling foods like celery, cucumber, peach, papaya, and spinach, while taking in lots of fish oil and probiotics via supplements. Any consumption of alcohol and spicy foods or drinks should also be minimized since these cause vasodilation and can make redness worse.


Teas of various types, particularly chamomile, green tea, and peppermint tea, can be used to help relieve facial redness. Green tea has cellular rejuvenating properties while chamomile and peppermint contains ingredients that natural calm the skin.

In addition to drinking these teas, each can be used topically on the skin. Simply steep the tea in boiling water for 10 minutes and cool in the fridge. Then apply the tea using a washcloth directly on the skin daily.

Oatmeal Masks

Colloidal oatmeal is a popular home remedy for relieving both itchiness and redness of the skin. Colloidal oatmeal, which can be purchased at most grocery stores, is nothing more than just pulverized oats. In a 2007 article published in the Journal of Drugs in Dermatology, oatmeal masks were shown to soothe the skin while providing anti-inflammatory benefits as well.

To make a mask simply add 100% pure colloidal oatmeal to water and mix into a thick paste. Apply the mask to your skin and wear for 10 minutes (allowing the mask to dry) before thoroughly rinsing it off.

Manuka honey

Manuka honey is a special honey from New Zealand made from bees who interact with flowers from a Manuka tree. This honey is rich in skin protecting antioxidants as well as anti-inflammatories. The honey is also antibacterial meaning its application can kill the bacteria involved in causing acne breakouts.

For the purposes of relieving redness look for Manuka that has an OMA rating of 15 or higher. Simply apply the honey to your skin daily for best results.

Anti-Redness skincare products

If using the above home remedies fails to help there are many great skin care products focused on soothing the skin and reducing redness. Some of our favorite products include:

Jennifer Gordon, MD

Dr. Gordon is Board Certified by the American Board of Dermatology and is a member of the American Society of Dermatologic Surgery (ASDS), the American Academy of Dermatology, the Dermatology Foundation, the Texas Medical Association and the Travis County Medical Society. Currently, Dr. Gordon oversees our South Austin location.

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