Experts Agree These Are the Best Makeup Products for Rosacea

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Byrdie / Sabrina Jiang

Post-spin class, a cringe-worthy moment, one too many martinis—all of the above can leave you a little bit red in the face. But there’s a significant difference between the occasional blush and perma-flushing. If your cheeks and nose are chronically red, you may have rosacea.

It’s an incredibly common condition; according to the National Rosacea Society, 415 million people worldwide deal with it. “Rosacea is triggered by episodes of blushing and flushing caused by over circulation of the blood,” celebrity esthetician Renée Rouleau says. “It presents as sensitive, red, or inflamed skin that shows telangiectasia (small, visible blood vessels) near the skin’s surface, which can become pustular, often causing it to be mistaken for adult acne.” Like many other conditions, the exact cause is unknown, though genetics, as well as sensitivity to mites and bacteria that live on our skin (file under gross but true), can play a role.

The good news is that, while the root of the issue is undetermined, we do know what types of triggers can exacerbate the flushing. Common ones include sun exposure, alcohol, spicy foods, hot temps, and more. The other piece of good news? There is plenty of OTC skincare that can help; we’re talking calming, cooling products packed with anti-inflammatory ingredients that effectively help quell redness. Make those the first part of your routine, followed by makeup that’s specially made to help knock out redness. There are more options out there than ever before, all of which can help camo and conceal flushing. The goal is to abide by many of the same rules as you would when choosing skincare; avoid irritating ingredients, such as fragrance and alcohol, and stick with simple products that contain minimal ingredients, though ideally with some skin-calming ingredients built-in, suggests celebrity makeup artist Bryan Cantor.

Ahead, the best rosacea-approved makeup products.

Best Overall: IT Cosmetics Bye Bye Redness Neutralizing Color-Correcting Cream

4.5
It Cosmetics Bye Bye Redness Neutralizing Correcting Cream

Courtesy of Sephora

What We Like
  • Reduces UV and free radical damage

  • Hydrating

  • Improves skin's elasticity

What We Don't Like
  • Can be a bit cakey

This color corrector is repeatedly recommended by derms and makeup artists alike, thanks to its top-notch ability to camouflage redness. (It’s no surprise, given that the formula was developed by dermatologists and plastic surgeons.) And while it’s technically not a foundation, the full coverage pigments cover redness—be it from rosacea, pimples, irritation, you name it—so well that you very well may be able to get away without wearing any other makeup.

Coverage: Full | Shade Range: Light Beige, Neutral Beige, Porcelain Beige | Finish: Matte | Size: 0.37 oz. | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: No

it cosmetics bye bye redness neutralizing color-correcting cream

Byrdie / Ashley Rebecca 

What Our Testers Say

"After I applied it, there was no trace of redness or any kind of blemish in sight—not to mention it did a fabulous job covering up my under-eye dark circles." — Ashley Rebecca, Product Tester

Best Full-Coverage: Dermablend Smooth Liquid Camo Foundation

Dermablend Smooth Liquid Camo Foundation

Courtesy of Ulta

What We Like
  • Buildable

  • Contains concentrated high-performance pigments

  • SPF 25 broad spectrum sun protection

  • Smudge- and transfer-resistant

What We Don't Like
  • A bit greasy

“Full coverage” and “lightweight texture” are often an oxymoronic pairing in the makeup world, but this formula somehow manages to achieve both. Super pigmented, it’s choice for those looking to completely and totally even out their skin tone. Still, it’s nice and hydrating, won’t clog pores, and offers a dose of important sun protection to boot.

Coverage: Medium to Full | Shade Range: Fair to Deep | Finish: Natural | Size: 1.0 oz. | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: No

Best Sheer Coverage: Chantecaille Future Skin

Chantecaille Future Skin

 Courtesy of Nordstrom

What We Like
  • Featherweight

  • Adjustable coverage

  • Loaded with natural botanicals

What We Don't Like
  • Pricey

“This is one of the most natural-looking foundations I have ever tried, and its sheer, buildable, oil-free formula is perfect for rosacea-prone skin,” Cantor says, who adds that the brand is well-known for creating sensitive skin-friendly products. (In fact, there are lots of skin-soothers already in this foundation, including aloe, chamomile, and arnica.) The unique, gel-based texture is made with 60% water, contributing to the featherweight feel and sheer pigment.

Coverage: Medium-to-Full | Shade Range: Light to Deep | Finish: Flawless | Size: 1.0 oz. | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: No

Runner-Up, Best Primer: Make Up For Ever Step 1 Primer Redness Corrector

MAKE UP FOR EVER Step 1 Primer Color Corrector - Redness Corrector
What We Like
  • Corrects redness for up to 24 hours

  • Hydrates all day

  • Adds radiance and balances the skin

What We Don't Like
  • Very strong scent to some

  • Blends poorly on dry and acne spots

Cantor is a fan of this formula: “The green tone makes it perfect for erasing all-over redness,” he says. Keyword being ‘all-over.’ He points out that applying green-tinted products on areas that aren’t red or flushed can end up making you look sick, so reserve these types of formulas for more diffuse and widespread redness.

Coverage: N/A | Shade Range: Fair to Light | Finish: Natural | Size: 1.0 oz. | Cruelty-Free: No | Byrdie Clean: No

Best with SPF: IT Cosmetics CC+ Cream with SPF 50+

3.8
IT Cosmetics CC+ Cream with SPF 50+

Courtesy of Macy's

What We Like
  • SPF 50+ high UV protection

  • Anti-aging

  • Full of botanicals

What We Don't Like
  • Feels too heavy to some

Wearing sunscreen daily is a non-negotiable for everyone and their mother, but diligent sun protection becomes even more imperative when you’re dealing with rosacea. Not only can sun exposure trigger a flushing flare, but sun damage also exacerbates the redness (it weakens and can even break down blood vessels). That’s why we appreciate that this overachiever, a go-to for Byrdie Email Editor Karli Bendlin, packs an impressive punch of broad-spectrum SPF 50+.

And the benefits don’t stop there. It’s also highly hydrating, contains youth-boosting collagen and peptides, and offers coverage that works equally well on its own, under foundation, or dabbed on as a spot treatment.

Coverage: Full | Shade Range: Fair to Deep | Finish: Natural | Size: 1.08 oz. | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: Yes

Best Tinted Moisturizer: Macrene Actives High Performance Tinted Moisturizer

Macrene Actives High Performance Tinted Moisturizer
What We Like
  • Buildable

  • Firms the skin

  • Made from active organic plant-derived ingredients

What We Don't Like
  • Very pricey

Cantor says this is choice for those who prefer lighter, tinted moisturizers over classic foundations. He lauds the derm-developed formula for containing ingredients that not only help tamp down redness, but also shrink pores, protect against environmental damage, and minimize the look of fine lines and wrinkles. It’s pricey but considering all those benefits, well worth it.

Active Ingredients: Milk Thistle, Titanium Dioxide | Skin Type: All | SPF: None | Size: 1.0 oz. | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: Yes

Best Concealer: Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage Concealer Duo Stick

Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage Concealer Duo Stick
What We Like
  • Large shade range

  • Easy-to-maneuver stick form

  • Optically blurs imperfections

  • Glides on smoothly

What We Don't Like
  • Could blend more evenly

If your rosacea appears in smaller patches, Cantor says a good concealer is a must. This dual-ended, a new take on the OG creamy variant, is his pick. “Formulated with calming ingredients, this two-in-one has a blurring concealer on one end to hide redness and imperfections, and a brightening concealer that you can use for the under-eye area on the other.”  Bonus points for the lightweight texture that never looks or feels cakey.

Coverage Level: Full | Shades: 16; Very Fair to Rich | Finish: Natural | Size: 0.03 oz. | Cruelty-Free: No | Byrdie Clean: Yes

Best Powder: BareMinerals Original Loose Powder Foundation SPF 15

4.5
bareminerals loose powder foundation

Courtesy

What We Like
  • Mineral-based SPF protection

  • Silky, soft-skin feel

  • Gives a natural-looking color to skin

  • Pure and minimal ingredients

What We Don't Like
  • May settle in pores

“With foundations, it’s a trial-and-error thing,” Rouleau warns. “But mineral powders like Bare Minerals generally work better than liquids, as they’re far less irritating.” And less irritating is a very good thing if you have rosacea; after all, the last thing you want is more redness to deal with. Credit a minimal ingredient list of only five minerals, which also somehow never look chalky. Bonus points for the fact that there’s an impressive array of 30 shades to choose from.

Coverage: Sheer-to-Full | Shade Range: Very Fair to Very Deep | Finish: Natural, Luminous | Size: 0.28 oz. | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: Yes

What Our Testers Say

“The price is on par with a ton of other products out there, but what’s cool about the Original Loose Powder Foundation is that you can use it as foundation or as a setting powder.” — Khera Alexander, Product Tester


Best Color-Correcting: Algenist Reveal Concentrated Color Correcting Drops

Algenist Reveal Concentrated Color Correcting Drops

 Courtesy of Sephora

What We Like
  • Weightless

  • Long-lasting

  • Works instantly

  • Travel-friendly

What We Don't Like
  • Product dries up and thickens in months

Customization is the name of the game here. You can either use these green-tinted, redness-neutralizing drops solo or add a few to either your foundation or moisturizer to instantly transform it into a rosacea-hiding superstar. (Decide on how many to add based on how much redness you have.) We’re here for it.

Coverage: N/A | Shade Range: N/A | Finish: N/A | Size: 0.5 oz. | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: No

Runner-Up, Best Color-Correcting: Clinique Redness Solutions Daily Protective Base

Clinique Redness Solutions Daily Protective Base
What We Like
  • Allergy-tested

  • Filled with anti-inflammatory ingredients

  • Contains a mix of physical sunscreens

What We Don't Like
  • Difficult to apply

Bendlin also likes this color correcting primer, another green-tinted pick that has the distinction of being both oil-free and having SPF 15 built-in. Given Clinique’s heritage when it comes to making products tailored for the sensitive crowd, you better believe this formula is allergy-tested and touts soothing and anti-inflammatory ingredients, too.

Key Ingredients: Titanium Dioxide, Zinc Oxide | Skin Type: Sensitive, Redness-Prone | Dosage: Apply amount as needed in AM | Size: 1.4 oz. | Cruelty-Free: No | Byrdie Clean: No

Best for Cheeks: Ilia Multi-Stick Cheek & Lip Tint in Dreamer

Ilia Multi-Stick Cheek & Lip Tint in Dreamer
What We Like
  • Easy-to-use stick form

  • Buildable, blendable, and breathable

  • Creamy formula

  • Travel-friendly

What We Don't Like
  • Doesn't provide long-lasting color

Blush may be the last thing you want to put on already-flushed cheeks, but you can still add some color to your face—so long as it’s the right color.  “Red-toned blushes and lip colors can make you look even redder, but this peachy hue is perfect for adding a pop of color on cheeks or lips if you have rosacea-prone skin,” says Cantor.  As an added benefit, it’s filled with hydrating and nourishing ingredients, think avocado oil and shea butter.

Coverage Level: Light | Shades: 7; Nudes, Reds, Pinks | Finish: Radiant, Natural | Size: 0.15 oz. | Cruelty-Free: Yes | Byrdie Clean: Yes

Cantor says that it’s a good idea to test any new product on a small area before applying it to your full face and to wait 72 hours to see if it irritates your skin or causes increased redness.

Final Verdict

So long as you choose wisely, the right makeup can work wonders when it comes to improving the look of rosacea-prone skin. The It Cosmetics Bye Bye Redness Neutralizing Color-Correcting Cream is our ultimate fave (and a fave of derms and makeup artists alike), for both camouflaging redness and helping to soothe the skin. If you prefer a mineral powder or foundation, you can’t go wrong with the beloved Bare Minerals Original Loose Powder Mineral Foundation Broad Spectrum SPF 15.

What To Look For in Makeup For Rosacea

Fewer Ingredients

Generally speaking, the simpler and shorter the ingredient list, the better, as there’s less likely to be something in the mix that will irritate your already stressed-out skin.

Alcohol and Fragrance-Free

Just as you would when choosing skincare, steer clear of these two, some of the most common irritants out there, says Cantor.

Calming Ingredients

More and more makeup formulas today include the addition of skincare ingredients that can help calm and soothe the skin, think aloe, chamomile, and allantoin, just to name a few.

FAQ
  • Is it safe to use makeup over rosacea?

    Yes, but (and this is a big one) it’s important to find the right formula so the makeup doesn’t further irritate your skin. “People with rosacea can certainly wear makeup, but with their skin being more sensitive, gentler products that aren’t aggravating are most important,” says New York City-based dermatologist Dr. Orit Markowitz. Look for formulas with anti-inflammatory ingredients and gentle formulations to minimize the risk of a flare-up.

  • How can you conceal the redness created by rosacea?

    Seek out products designed to counteract redness. For instance, you can opt to use a green-tinted concealer or primer beforehand to help neutralize red tones. Think back to middle school art class, and ruminate on the color wheel—red and green are on the opposite sides of the wheel, so they neutralize each other.

  • Will makeup make my rosacea worse?

    Certain ingredients can if they’re too harsh on your skin. Before committing to any certain formula, Dr. Patricia Ceballos of Schweiger Dermatology Group recommends doing a patch test on your arm or neck to see how your skin reacts.

Why Trust Byrdie

Byrdie contributor Melanie Rud has over a decade of experience in the beauty industry, writing for some of the biggest magazines and websites out there. While she doesn’t have rosacea, she does have extremely sensitive skin and chooses her makeup accordingly.

Meet the Expert

  • Reneé Rouleau is a celebrity esthetician and founder of Renée Rouleau Skin Care, known for catering her products especially towards those with sensitive skin. 


  • Bryan Cantor is a global celebrity makeup artist based in New York City. He brings his impressive knowledge of skincare, makeup products, application techniques, and professional tips and secrets to clients and companies in New York City and across the globe.

According to our Diversity Pledge, 15% of products in our newly-published market roundups will feature Black-owned and/or Black-founded brands. At the time of publishing, we were not able to find any makeup for rosacea from a Black-owned and/or Black-founded business. If you know of one we should consider, please email us at contact@byrdie.com and we will evaluate the product ASAP.

Article Sources
Byrdie takes every opportunity to use high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial guidelines to learn more about how we keep our content accurate, reliable and trustworthy.
  1. National Roscea Society. New Study Finds 415 Million People May Suffer from Rosacea Worldwide.

  2. Hoel DG, Berwick M, de Gruijl FR, Holick MF. The risks and benefits of sun exposure 2016. Dermatoendocrinol. 2016;8(1):e1248325. doi:10.1080/19381980.2016.1248325

  3. Lin TK, Zhong L, Santiago JL. Anti-Inflammatory and Skin Barrier Repair Effects of Topical Application of Some Plant Oils. Int J Mol Sci. 2017;19(1):70. doi:10.3390/ijms19010070

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