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Flakey Face

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  • #31
    I'm still confused. Isn't seb derm usually caused by a fungus? There is so much reading out there on this that I don't know where to start. I've flipped through the posts and read other peoples' attempts to remedy their situation. It just sends me back to square one!


    • #32
      Yes, seb derm is thought to involve a yeast. Sufferers may either have more of this yeast, or be more reactive to it.

      However, I for one - and others on this thread too - do not think I have seb derm. Flakes does not always equal seb derm. That's important - for a long time I was trying to treat what I thought was seb derm, but obviously, if it isn't you're going to have limited success.


      • #33
        I'm sure rosacea and the flakes are linked. The question is are the flakes a symptom of rosacea or another condition which rosacea make us more vulnerable to or maybe the flakes and rosacea are themselves just symptoms of another problem.[/QUOTE]

        Very well put. Those are the questions I am asking myself all the time.

        Ok, some scattered responses to recent posts;

        I think most of us are talking more or less about the same condition ; What that condition really is remains to be seen.

        For me, I genuinely don't know if it's Seb Derm or not. Instinctively, I think not. On the other hand, I am certain that is what is on my scalp. My scalp worsened quite considerably at the same time that these flakes appeared on my face.

        MediumDog - The reason I asked about the antibiotics is because I wondered if the reason my scalp had worsened and my face had developed the dryness was due to a yeast infection i.e. Seb Derm. I know it is very common to develop yeast infections while on antibiotics as all the bacteria from the body , both good and bad is killed off. If this was the case, it does not mean that the yeast infection would disappear when stopping the anti-b's as it is such a stubborn condition.
        Anyway, that's just one idea I have and not one I necessarily believe to be true. As I say, it's confusing.

        I agree that the skin barrier seems to be compromised. Absolutely.

        The forehead thing; Yes. That is true for me also. The flakes are particularly dominant there though my Rosacea is not.

        The oil thing; Again, this is true for me. My skin produces a lot of oil through the day. I believe that if this was actual dry skin then a good moisturiser applied frequently over the course of a few weeks would definitely make a huge positive impact. It seems this has not been the case for any of us. Not only that, but we all seem to be intolerant to most creams and moisturisers. At best, a moisturiser can temporarily disguise or 'flatten' the problem. Correct?

        Cleansers: I wash my face with Kiehl's Centella Skin-Calming Cleanser which I find really gentle.
        I too have experimented with not washing but have found the same thing - you have to! I've now started cleansing every day rather than every few days to see if this helps with the 'build-up'.

        I live in a hard water area but don't feel it's connected. I have lived here for years and as I stated earlier, I previously had normal/oily skin with none of these dry issues.

        Oh, MediumDog: Yes it really did occur over the course of one or two days!! Peculiar I know!! Again, this is why I don't think it's Seb Derm. I had no SD on my face then suddenly my face just tightened up and flake flake flaked all of a sudden! (On my thread 'Extreme Dryness Overnight' I posted up photos though they don't show the flakes too well - Am going to take some more to post here).

        As for SE Asia and the clearing up of my scalp - I completely put this down to Sun exposure and high humidity levels. It is well documented how good the sun can be for SD. I was outside everyday for a year and the effects lasted a good few months after I got back but with the harsh Scottish winter came the Return of the SD!!
        Annoying that I can't now test this theory on my face as sun exposure + Rosacea = NO!


        • #34

          Reading your previous report ('extreme dryness overnight') I note that you were at the time trying out some things, and you mention in particular trying out some Aloe Vera gel which 'really dried you out'.

          Was this, like, the precipitating cause, i.e. did this dry things out and then they never got right again, or...?

          I just wonder. My derm's opinion is that there is an inflammatory cycle, i.e. you do one thing which sets of inflammation and, due to the way these things work in the skin, it just keeps going, causing itself. So, you know, maybe in your case the Aloe Vera began this cycle?

          (And we don't notice improvement in the flakes when we dampen down the inflammation a bit because its too small to notice...).

          It feels like a long shot.


          • #35

            I have definitely wondered about this. For a while I thought it could be a contact dermatitis but I really don't think it is - it's been far too long and has remained consistently tight , dry and flaky, showing no sign of improvement.

            Trouble is, I can't remember exactly what I was using / eating / doing around that time and in what order. However, I do know that I had a very bad flare after eating ice-cream, following which I applied the Aloe Vera Gel. The gel did make my face feel instantly dry.

            I think it is a long shot though. I only applied Aloe to my cheeks and the dryness is all over (though I do buy that if it caused the skin to further inflame then the inflammation would be all over).

            Surely, if the Aloe caused one reaction, there would be another topical that could cause the other or at least go some way to counteracting the effects of the former?


            • #36
              Even though I am brand new to the site I have read through several of these threads and always find them very informative. I wanted to add to this thread because I had severe flaking on my cheeks. I was using tweezers to grab each tiny flake one at a time. I did not get to see the pictures posted on this thread but wanted to describe what I thought was happening on my face. Since my rosacea was coming and going I noticed the flaking doing the same. In between breakouts I did not notice flaking. At the beginning of a breakout I did not notice it either. Right as my face would start getting bad I would have all the other stuff the first day but not a flake. The flaking started a day or two into my breakout and I also noticed it more each time as my breakout was subsiding and it was like the flakes were the skin that had been damaged by that episode of rosacea. My Rosacea has been in remission for a couple weeks and I can't find a flake anywhere to pull off. If my rosacea started back up today, I would not see a flake for a day or two and then I would have a hundred tiny flakes. I could also wash them off with a wash cloth if I pressed hard but it would make my face worse. So in my case it may have been damaged skin each time it happened.


              • #37
                Thanks applejack,

                That's really useful because (again, assuming we're talking about the same thing, which does sound at least plausible) it really looks like it is a clear-cut case of the rosacea-inflammation causing the skin barrier issues.

                This would at least help in giving us a target. I.e. ignore the flaking and go after the inflammation.

                ...of course, given the very limited repertoire of rosacea-controlling meds out there, this is far from easy. But still...

                I guess we just have a type of rosacea that has this kind of effect on the skin barrier. There really are so many different types of rosacea. It leads you up so many blind alleys.


                • #38
                  Signed up after reading this. Can ascribe to every single symptom listed here. I'm male in my mid 20-s by the way. I had the dry flakiness long before i had rosacea. I have once sister with extremely dry skin, and one that has rosacea. Maybe i just got lucky.

                  If i make a big effort to get rid of the dry skin (the only way i feel okay to leave the house), will always result in extra inflamed redness. Skin looks raw and damaged, a combination of rosacea and the frequent assault i give it to "exfoliate". Intense creams make my skin red hot and greasy. I can't go out into the sun without burning as the oil my skin produces works to, in effect, literally fry my skin.

                  It feels very much like my skin is damaged beyond repair. And there appears to be no way for it to rebuild anything resembling a coherent layer. And even if i'm extremely careful not to scrape my skin during the day, i can guarantee that sleeping against a pillow, whatever attempt i make to avoid facial contact - or material, will result in the same chapped, dry build up and soreness.

                  The summer is particularly miserable. People catch on to the "I just got sunburned" excuse when it's limited to a portion of your face (again, despite having all over dry skin, the rosacea only really exists below my eyeline). It seems very much to be a deteriorating condition too. My skin seems to have almost given up hope, and i look worse every year.

                  This condition has severely compromised just about every asset of my life. Too early to say ruined, but i'm not holding out for much.


                  • #39
                    ...the going-round-in-circles just keeps on.

                    Genericposter - I can't help feeling that what you say rather contradicts what I had just concluded, if your dry/flakiness was around before your rosacea.

                    However, its easily possible that there is some third thing underlying both. Or in your case, it may be that the compromised barrier has led to rosacea symptoms over time.

                    But whatever is the case, it really would help if you described things in as much detail as you can muster - how it started, what its like, what things you've tried, and so on. We stand a much better chance of cracking this if there are many people, who are broadly on the same page, trying out lots of different things, and investigating.

                    (I know how life-destroying it all is. The best solace, though, is the knowledge that it is just a biological process. As such, it can be altered. We just need to find the right things to do that).
                    Senior Member
                    Last edited by TheMediumDog; 17 June 2009, 07:45 AM.


                    • #40
                      Dryness started in mid teens. About the same time as the flushing. I always had really sensitive skin that would react to anything, I didn't really think of it as rosacea until it went from being temperamentally red to permanent, sometime around age 20. It didn't become particularly affecting until winter 06//07, when the soreness began.

                      If left to dry naturally, it will dry to scaley, broken, flaking skin. At which point the application of moisturizer will just leave it red, glowing and greasy. And i've also noticed that if i just wash my face, this will trigger it to stay red and sore afterwards, as if my skin doesn't properly absorb moisturizers. An amount of time spent in a luke warm bath doesn't have this same effect.

                      My facial skin always feels thin, sore and sticky, despite the dry flaking. Not unlike a semi healed skin abrasion. I don't really have a p&p problem. I can put the spots i get down to greasiness. And i'm 100% positive it isn't seb derm. I've tried rosex, oral antibi's, nizoral, anti-mite cream and a billion and one moisturizers. All to little or no effect.

                      It started as a faint redness in my upper cheek area + flushing. This area turned permanent, then expanded to the rest of my lower face.

                      It almost looks and feels like i'm missing a layer of skin.
                      Junior Member
                      Last edited by genericposter; 17 June 2009, 10:06 AM.


                      • #41
                        GenericPoster: This sound exactly what has been happening to me. It all started with a little redness below the eyes - then expanded since I was 20. I am now also in my mid 20´s and have the same symptoms as you have.

                        But since three weeks I am on oral Metronidazole and all this flaking is now finally subsiding (still a little red in the face though). My skin seems to finally heal without being disturbed. I used to look like I poured a bag of flour on my face when I dried after a shower.

                        You say you have been trying oral anti´s. Have you´ve been trying oral Metronidazole?
                        Senior Member
                        Last edited by siliconmessiah; 17 June 2009, 01:56 PM.


                        • #42
                          Originally posted by siliconmessiah View Post
                          But since three weeks I am on oral Metronidazole and all this flaking is now finally subsiding
                          Just wondered if anyone else on this thread has tried this (as opposed to Metrogel or other antibiotics)?

                          I have only tried Oxytetracycline.


                          • #43
                            I was on Erythromycin for over a year, with rosex (metrogel) cream. I'm not sure they did anything atall.

                            Keep updating! If it sticks, i'll ask the doc about trying it out.


                            • #44
                              I've had the same symptoms, dry flaky skin along side of nose. If i use my nail to rub it upward you can see all the dry flakes. They seems really difficult to remove and if I try to pull them off, it really doesn't work and area turns red. I have tried to use tweezers to remove flakes, but the flakes seem to persist and it doesn't seem to help. I'm not sure if flake is the proper word to describe, its kind of like little pieces of skin that peel up, but I can't remove them. They are white in color and and feel soft, I guess b/c I try to keep them moisturized. When I wash my face, I can definitely feel that area is a different texture than the rest of my skin.

                              Using a gentle AHA at night seems to help a little and using moisturizer seems to disguise the flakes. Sometimes if you look up close when skin is dried out, you can see a couple of flakes. My skin seems to look worse and dry flakes get worse when I stop using AHA at night and just use gentle skin cleanser. Recovering from laser treatment right now so only using gentle skin cleanser, which seems to make it look worse. I am also on spiro and sulfer antiobiotic.

                              Wondering if use of the wrong skincare products, medication, and diet together all cause skin barrier to be compromised in people like myself, with rosacea.


                              • #45
                                Originally posted by sarahjonjon View Post
                                Just wondered if anyone else on this thread has tried this (as opposed to Metrogel or other antibiotics)?

                                I have only tried Oxytetracycline.
                                I have only tried the tetracyclines - oxy, mino, and lymecycline.

                                My feeling is that the difference wouldn't be great, but I may be wrong.