Lena Dunham: ‘I am Rihanna to myself [but when I got rosacea] I took the news hard’

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Lena Dunham has a new essay for Lenny about dealing with rosacea which came on after treatment with steroids for endometriosis. (More about her endometriosis here.) At least I think that’s what happened, it’s hard to discern among all that navel-gazing bulls-t about how happy she used to be with herself and her self image, other than just this one thing – her skin. Apparently the rosacea cropped up, she had a reaction to makeup afterwards, and her whole face was covered with tiny pimples. She then discovered that she was vain, but she only realized that once her skin was blemished because that was the last thing about her outward appearance she was clinging to or something. She always reveled in her beautiful glowing skin prior to this. Before that she was so happy to dress frumpy and do funky things with her hair because what did she care? When her skin broke out all over that was the last straw though and all her insecurities came creeping. Here’s some of what she wrote and there’s so much more at the source.

She always had high self esteem
I really thought I never cared what I looked like… the basics of bodily self-consciousness — being hyper-critical about my undulating belly, my wide ass, my off-white buck teeth, my whatever being too whatever — have mostly passed me by.

I laughed when I read [mean] comments… Because they didn’t know my secret: I AM a model. As Jenni so elegantly puts it, I am Rihanna to myself…

How she got rosacea
A few weeks ago, a course of steroids to treat a massive flare of joint pain and instability led to rosacea’s [sic] appearing overnight…

Then, after a long, sweaty night shoot in which I was covered in strange makeup, I washed my face to reveal that the rosacea had become hundreds of tiny pimple-blisters that covered me from forehead to neck…

She had acne in her teens but then got a great dermatologist
But I got used to having good skin over the years. Showing up to photo shoots and being told, “You barely need any makeup at all!”

My skin remained dreamy, even through hormone fluctuations, new medications, and daily, sweaty on-set makeup wear…

Getting rosacea made her realize she was vain
Seven years of being treated in the public eye like a punch line about female imperfection may not have felt like it was wearing me down, but it had actually forced me to rely emotionally on my one area of fully conventional beauty: my perfect f-ng skin.

Now she realizes the negativity has been getting to her after all
But I have been forced to finally mourn the long, slow hit on my self-image. I thought my adolescent attitude, the take-no-prisoners approach to my own look and form, could carry me through the onslaught of critical attention. I thought I could intellectualize it away. But I can’t.

[From Lenny]

I’m really lucky that I don’t get adult acne. That can be horrible to deal with from what I understand. After going on birth control I’ve been getting occasional large pimples for which I discovered Clearasil acne patches. They’re clear and cover zits better than any foundation or cover makeup. My friends swear they don’t notice them. You just stick one on the zit, the plastic practically blends in and they treat the area. They work fast and are worth every penny.

While I find Dunham grating to say the least, I can’t imagine having rosacea all over my face. I would be apoplectic. I mean I get freaked out over one pimple. I’m also much more insecure about my hair, body image and fashion than she is and I work hard on all of that. I guess it makes sense that skin would be Lena’s breaking point and she does deserve credit for opening up about it and realizing that she is affected by criticism. She seems somewhat shameless and self absorbed but she’s also willing to be vulnerable I guess. Acne is something that a lot of people, teens especially, suffer with in silence. She did dedicate one whole paragraph in this essay to what adolescents must go through, so at least the entire thing wasn’t about her.

Here’s a photo Lena posted of her acne. She shared in her essay that she had a great dermatologist when she was younger. Surely she can find an excellent cosmetologist. I’ve seen videos on YouTube of teens covering their acne so well you can hardly tell. This looks like something that can be disguised with the right foundation and shading.

2017 Tribeca Film Festival - "My Art" Premiere - Arrivals

Do you see this photo of Lena clinging to Zoe Kazan? She does that to people often on the red carpet.
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photos credit: PRphotos, Getty, Instagram

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113 Responses to “Lena Dunham: ‘I am Rihanna to myself [but when I got rosacea] I took the news hard’”

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  1. Lenn says:

    She makes me tired.

  2. minx says:

    Oh, brother.

    • INeedANap says:

      I’ve had rosacea my whole life. I had no idea you could have a full on psychological crisis because of it.

      And I am sure she has way more money and resources than me to deal with it.

      Ugh.

      • Who ARE These People? says:

        When mine flares up I do have a mini-psychological crisis, yes I do. And I’m 60 years old, have crappy hair, wear Tshirts from Old Navy and comfortable shoes. Rosacea, when it acts up, can make you feel just so miserable and self-conscious. That kind of appearance is associated with ill health and alcoholism.

      • Lolo86lf says:

        When I have a rosacea flare up I get self conscious. People look at it and they make a face. I try to ignore it but the burning and itching don’t let me forget.

      • Kitten says:

        I’m sorry ladies that cannot be easy.

        A friend of mine got IPL to treat her rosacea and it worked amazingly. Have you guys looked into it at all? It’s not cheap but there are groupons (always a gamble I know) and special deals at medspas.

      • tealily says:

        What’s IPL?

      • Who ARE These People? says:

        Thanks Kitten. I’m going to look into laser at least for removing scars, but most of the fun money has been going to the ACLU, PP, SPLC … and next year, targeted Democratic candidates. Skin may have to wait; freedom first. ; )

        Good work in Boston!

      • INeedANap says:

        For the ladies with rosacea as well, I sincerely hope it gets better. It’s no fun.

        I think I am just comfortable being ugly, but the burning is really what bothers me.

      • jjj says:

        Do not get laser treatments on your face with a groupon. Read up on laser/IPL gone wrong and laser burns. The effects are irreversible and will make you miss the times you has rosacea.

        If the machine settings are set too high you won’t be able to feel it, and the effects will only appear when it’s too late. I’ve seen women whose facial skin literally looked like they were in their 80s. Sagging, wrinkles, zero subcutaneous fat… all due to laser burns.

  3. HK9 says:

    The more she blathers on about about her appearance the more I’m convinced that she’s never gotten over not being ‘conventionally’ pretty.

    • kdlaf says:

      Agreed 100%

    • FLORC says:

      I suspect she just was adoration. Not to be prettier, but to be held higher, valued greater, than those who are conventionally pretty.

    • Alleycat says:

      I actually think it’s the opposite. She grew up in a privileged bubble that repeatedly told her she was a special snowflake. I honestly believe she thinks she’s model-beautiful. She loves herself too much for me to think otherwise. I think sometimes she’s shocked that most of us don’t agree.

    • lucy2 says:

      Agreed. So much focus is given to appearance, body image, etc. For someone who’s whole schtick was about not caring about all that, she talks about it an awful lot. Why not talk about other issues, current events, intelligence, creativity, etc? She (inexplicably) has an audience, why not use that to highlight people doing good or interesting or important work in the world?

    • QueenB says:

      See also Amy “I am proudly Plus szie but dont you ever dare call me that” Schumer.

      Or all those celebs that trash the MET gala as superficial and basically below them but they still always go to belong to the people they so desperately want to fit in with.

      • island_girl says:

        So true. Amy I can’t believe Glamour called me plus sized Schumer is another stunted growth drainer of energy.

    • island_girl says:

      This.

  4. Lily says:

    I guess when you’re not accusing black men, like Odell Beckham Jr, of being oppressive for daring to not pay attention to you this is what you decide to make public.

    Lena is deeply insecure & ignorant. She reminds me of Schumer preaching about how desirable & beautiful she is despite being “unconventional” yet throwing a massive fit & writing an essay on how she isn’t plus size.

    Can she just disappear with her bland “comedy”, white feminism, & vaguely racist attitude?

    • yyu says:

      She is a deeply insecure attention-starved imbecile. And I am being kind.

      And no, I will not side with her just because she is a woman and I am a full gender equality advocate. She is a dumbass, proclaims everyone attacks her b/c of misogyny. Trust me, they are not.

    • Nicole says:

      I’m just going to agree with this because you nailed it.

    • QueenB says:

      Boom. Fully agree.

      I dont hold being insecure against her, that can just be annyoing but like you said her harmful actions against PoC is why I hate her.

  5. Mle428 says:

    I had very severe, adult-onset acne. In my mid to late 20′s I was trying everything. Proactive seemed to work better than anything, but I was still getting awful cystic breakouts with facial scarring. I had some allergy testing done, and it turns out I was allergic to wheat (different from Celiac). When I cut wheat from my diet, my skin cleared up entirely.

    In my early 30′s I started having laser facial treatments to reduce the old scarring (when I was finally able to afford that kind of luxury…because in my 20′s, that was a pipe dream). I just had one of the doctors I work with (I’m a nurse) say, “You’re almost 40?? You must have really good genes!” Nope…a boatload of $$ went into my face. I look younger now than I did 10 years ago.

    It’s awful to have issues with your face. It’s the first thing most people look at. I’m no Lena Dunham fan, but this I can totally relate to.

    • poorlittlerichgirl says:

      I’ve had acne for as long as I can remember. I did two cycles of Accutane in my teens in the 90′s. I have to say that the acne is bad on it’s own but the scarring that it leaves behind can be worse. Even when I get my face clear of blemishes for any given time, the scars are still there. It’s a never ending cycle.

      I don’t care for Lena at all but I also wouldn’t wish skin problems on her. Really not on anyone.

      • Mle428 says:

        @PoorLittleRichGirl it’s awful! I needed more makeup to cover the scarring than I did the actual acne…not to mention the scars that pitted. Ugh. Sorry to hear that you’ve been through this, too.

      • Steph says:

        I.want to.try Banisher, I heard it really helps with the scarring.

    • Barbcat says:

      MLE428, I have a similar problem with wheat and sugar. I had bad ovary cysts, breakouts, and achy joints in my 30′s and 40′s. I went gluten-free and eat almost no added sugar and it is all gone. I think a lot of Lisa’s problem could be solved by diet. She always looks so unhealthy. I wonder if she has ever tried any testing/elimination dieting.

    • poorlittlerichgirl says:

      @Mle428, So true about the extra makeup to cover the scars! Thank you for sharing your story. I can relate to it so much. Hugs to you, love.

    • evie says:

      @Mle428, I’m so sorry for the skin issues you’ve endured. You really nailed it on the head when you said that it is awful to have issues with your face because it’s the first thing people look at.

      Rosacea SUCKS. I had great skin until I turned 40 and then all of a sudden, I can’t go in the sun anymore and can’t wear makeup. Even just being a passenger in a car requires sunscreen. I am no Lena Dunham fan either but can 100% identify with the miserable feeling that comes along with Rosacea. Makeup that doesn’t break you out is difficult to find, same with skin care products. You have to be really careful about anything you put on your face from that point on. Your skin actually gets thicker. You look like you have permanent sunburn in places. When you go get a brow and lip wax, the redness takes FOREVER to go away and pops back out every time you shower. So every time you shower or wash your face, you look like you just had a waxing appointment. Just sayin. I know it’s not a cancer diagnosis but it does make life a little more difficult.

      • Who ARE These People? says:

        Yes, I’m with you on this. I know very little about Lena Dunham but rosacea-prone skin can sometimes be great and glowy, like she said, because it’s thin and sensitive — until the condition kicks in. It’s unpredictable, unsightly, and you feel as if you’re walking around with measles or pox. Makeup only goes so far. Rosacea can even travel into the eyes and hurt the corneas, requiring antibiotics to prevent eye damage. It’s also associated with other systemic conditions and is linked to higher cardiovascular disease risk. It’s more than a minor annoyance.

        It takes trial and error to figure out what makes it worse and what makes it better, and sometimes that really hurts your lifestyle. For example, think about heat and sweating making it worse: What about cardiovascular exercise (which you especially need to reduce your disease risk). What about a nice trip to the sauna? In winter, what about a nice hot cocoa, cup of tea or bowl of soup? To constantly have to monitor and not live freely is a huge pain, and yet you feel “vain” for not wanting to walk around looking unsightly or have people think you’re an active alcoholic. It gets worse with stress, fatigue, illness, medication…it looks for any opportunity to flare up and gets worse with age.

        I can relate to Dunham not feeling ‘vain’ until this happened: I’m fairly casual, usually never bothered with my hair, only basic makeup, simple clothes, but having this stuff right up there on my face has been different. It’s like having a mark – and it’s also not by choice.

        Makeup doesn’t always cover the redness, which can be very bright. If the spots are right under your eyes, you can’t address that easily (plus: corneas!).
        But, on the plus side, Clinique’s Redness Solutions liquid foundation works pretty well and has some mild antibacterial in the formula. I hope they never stop making it, it’s the only thing that helps.

      • CuriousCole says:

        I’ve got rosacea too :-( I’ve found eating lots of fruit and using Murad’s Sensitive Soothing Serum actually makes a big difference with the redness and tightness. It’s almost $60 but one bottle lasts for months, and it’s very gentle.

    • tty says:

      Cutting out gluten did nothing for me but going vegan fixed my skin problems for good. My skin was terrible, even as a vegetarian. Went vegan, zero problems.

      • Who ARE These People? says:

        What do you attribute this to? It means you cut out eggs? Dairy? (how do you get calcium?) Increasing fats, omegas?

      • Brittney B says:

        Dairy is actually entirely unnecessary for us, biologically and nutritionally. (I mean, think about it… why would we need another animal’s breast milk after we naturally stop drinking from our mother’s breasts? Our bodies don’t.) Plenty of calcium in leafy green veggies, nuts, and beans.

        @tty — I’ve had the same experience. Vegetarian since age 12, horrible acne throughout my adolescence and teen years, then sporadic breakouts all through my 20′s… until I went vegan around 27, and never looked back. My hair and nails are healthier too.

      • magnoliarose says:

        I noticed once I became a vegan my overall health improved and my blood work improved. I wasn’t sick but I was tired. I looked at a picture from when I began and I look brighter, younger and healthier. Sure I practice good skin care but it was explained that many people have sick livers, fatty livers or even liver disease but don’t know it. Skin issues are one of the symptoms of liver problems or a less than optimal functioning liver. A sluggish metabolism is another. A Hidden liver disease is becoming a wide spread problem because it is silent and by the time it is obvious it is advanced.
        Vegan gets a bad rep because of the militant preachers but there are benefits beyond animal welfare and the environment.

      • tty says:

        @Who ARE These People?

        I cut out all animal products, obviously. So yeah – no eggs, milk, cheese or any other dairy. It was probably linked to all the stuff they give to animals to make them grow faster and produce more milk/eggs. Lots of antibiotics, steroids, hormones. My thyroid had been completely out of control for a couple of years and it magically calmed down RIGHT AFTER I went vegan. So, probably hormones. Milk comes from a cow that’s recently given birth (and had her baby stolen from her, but that’s another story). There’s no way there isn’t a crazy amount of hormones in it. I mean, it’s supposed to turn a tiny baby calf into a huge cow in a short amount of time.

    • kimbers says:

      After sherlock holmsing my face in 2011, i found out i was getting rosacea from processed foods and drinks. So i stopped eating crap and started cooking and eating clean. Health went up, cleaned my face up ans dropped lbs. Feel like a million bucks! Effdd proactive bc i feel the industry is supplying us witha cause and cure to so many things to make people richer

  6. yyu says:

    There are people dying of cancer and she worries about something Proactiv most likely can fix… man, how self-interested and depthless this sad excuse for a person always is. You are not a beauty and people hate you – why bother???

    She really thinks she is Christy Turlington!

    btw, you are not a model. You are not a fashion model, you are not a model citizen, you are not a model woman. You are a self-aggrandizing sad excuse for a person who thinks her lack of distinction or true insight should not even be uttered because FEMINISM!!!!

    The fight for gender equlity does not excuse your stupidity.

    • Maple Girl says:

      If she was a model then her personality would be okay?

      I get her in this instance. When you get attacked for your appearance every day ( I used to be fat, fun fun times) you tend to cling to the one thing people praise ( my skin). It’s natural to be hurt when that one thing also goes away.

      • yyu says:

        What gave you the impression that I proclaim her abysmal and abhorrent personality would have been OK if she were/looked like a fashion model?

        Pray tell.

        btw, for a woman who has publicly called out and shamed men that do not find her clearly overweight naked body plastered on a futon physically attractive and labeled them as toxic misogynist neanderthals, she should tone it down a little with the self-pity.

        She is an unattractive woman. Period. The fact that she hates her skin is not some fresh new chapter in her newly-acquired self-awareness. Not everyone is gonna find you hot and not everyone is the devil’s spawn b/c of it. She is beyond insecure and wants to turn that into a fight for feminism! How odious.

        Opportunistic and manipulative, yet not cunning enough to mask it.

    • Narak says:

      YYY You don’t like her, obviously. So look away and stop adding to basic, course, nasty rhetoric that’s becoming the norm.

    • Who ARE These People? says:

      Rosacea is not acne! Rosacea has a form that generates pustules that look like acne, but aren’t. Many people think they are at first (in their 20s etc) and treat them like acne, which only leads to permanent scarring. ProActiv is not a treatment for rosacea.

      I get that you don’t like her, but don’t minimize the problems caused by rosacea. It can damage more than self-esteem. It can attack the eye’s protective covering, the corneas, and is associated with higher risk of cardiovascular disease.

      Women who are not Lena Dunham have rosacea and hate it for good reason. Please don’t discount what they go through. Medical science still doesn’t know what causes it and dermatologists hand out a lot of creams and lotions and gels, but they’re not fully effective. Some people take a low-dose antibiotic for years, but then they’re taking a low-dose antibiotic for years.

      I kind of welcomed this article because I hoped that she and commenters could talk about new ways to prevent or treat it! And because it could educate people that rosacea is NOT acne and that people with rosacea are not all alcoholics. Some doctors didn’t identify my problem at first because I don’t drink, and they didn’t know what to make of the redness and pustules/papules in a non-drinker. That delayed treatment, which resulted in more scarring and embarrassment.

  7. Jenns says:

    Oh FFS.

    Look, I had adult acne is my early 30s and it sucks. But Lena always makes everything about Lena and it has to be SO DRAMATIC–almost as if she is the first person to ever discover adult acne & rosacea.

  8. Jen says:

    I never had significant acne as a teenager and all of the sudden, at 29, it showed up. I can’t stand Lena, but I will say it was so upsetting-I was so self-conscious and embarrassed all the time. I would actually avoid social situations because I felt so bad-sometimes those small bumps are the hardest to camouflage. Fortunately, I found a facialist that cleared it up but I have to agree with Lena on this one-adult acne seriously does a number on your self-esteem.

    • .... says:

      Cut out dairy, grains and sugar from your diet and see if that works.

    • Who ARE These People? says:

      Rosacea =/= adult acne. Please see my 2 comments above. Both difficult; one can damage corneas and is linked to CV disease risk.

    • ClaraBelle says:

      I’m sure both acne and rosacea affects self-esteem, but rosacea is NOT acne. Totally different causes and treatments (there is basically no treatment for rosacea)

  9. MarionC says:

    Good Lord! Sounds like she mostly is having reactions to something, maybe even just hives, vs full on rosacea. Which, with her $$, is not that difficult to treat. I have it, get laser therapy a couple times a year and for the most part it’s controlled. I get she’s having angst but she writes like it’s some incurable condition.

    • Who ARE These People? says:

      How much does laser therapy cost you, whereever you live? What are the risks and side effects? I have some scarring and when my ship comes in, want to remove a couple of the worst scars from rosacea damage – which tends to be right up front, on my nose and inner cheeks.

  10. crazydaisy says:

    I started getting rosacea in my 30′s, but was able to keep it from progressing by following an anti-inflammatory diet (no wheat was probably the biggest help) and taking a couple of key supplements (notably B Complex, Betaine HCl, and zinc). Sounds like Lena’s case was caused by a reaction to drugs and might be temporary though. Hopefully for her since she seems to identify with her skin being her best feature. (BTW I’m not a fan of Lena & haven’t seen her in anything, I just don’t wish a skin condition on anyone.)

  11. DragonWise says:

    God, this one needs a shot of attention again! She has no idea how transparently basic she is.

  12. Sunflower says:

    I mean…I don’t get it. I have endometriosis and I deal with it, and so do a lot of women. I don’t get her crusade of awareness for it. And now rosacea? My mom has rosacea, and, again, treatable, and as conditions go, it’s not really that bad. Obviously people can have bad/worse versions of these things than others, but…it’s still so weird to me, her constant badgering for attention in the name of awareness.

    • Who ARE These People? says:

      Endometriosis can range from mild to severe, in the spread of tissue, the organs it adheres too, and the systemic response. Glad you are okay. I had a terrible time and required surgery; adhesions were all over my lower body cavity. Surgery left scar tissue, but I don’t want more surgery to address it and it’s not that bad. Other women do have surgery to clean up the original post-surgical scar tissue. I suspect my mother had it too, but she was in adulthood before we had greater awareness. Endometriosis is related with higher levels of other reproductive cancers and conditions, higher rates of infertility, and can cause a lot of monthly pain that is – because it happens to women – underdiagnosed and undertreated.

      I know zip about Lena Dunham but you know what? She’s calling attention to some things that hurt women and are under-discussed and under-treated. I don’t know if we need to wait for a ‘nicer’ or more ‘relatable’ celeb to come along, and it would be great if one did, but in the meantime, she got these words out there. Just because people don’t like her in particular doesn’t mean endometriosis isn’t a problem or that rosacea doesn’t hurt us.

    • jwoolman says:

      She’s a writer. She writes about what she knows and what she experiences. That doesn’t make it all about her in a bad way, she isn’t writing a research article. She is writing reflectively about her own situation and reactions.

  13. Annon says:

    After the dog stunt of hers- i really dont care. Its was just too cruel. Showed her character. I can see her abandoning her parents when they are old and need her.

    • Dani says:

      I snorted my coffee while reading that last line. Sadly, true I suspect.

    • Ksenia says:

      @Anon–What dog stunt? I know almost nothing about this clearly widely disliked woman…Also, how is she detrimental to POC, as has also been stated here? Not being combative at all, just uninformed and genuinely curious.

  14. chlo says:

    I was diagnosed with rosacea about 1.5 years ago … still trying to figure out what treats it best. My husband and I are trying to get pregnant, and my dermatologist advised against using any prescription medications while trying and while pregnant. Most recently I’m loving the Benton snail essence and snail sheet masks. If anyone has any product advice, please share!

    • Harryg says:

      I take massive doses of pantothenic acid to keep my cystic acne in control. It seems to help my rosacea too. Good luck!

    • H says:

      @chlo, I have bad rosacea on my cheeks and nose. I’ve tried everything, expensive and cheap. Read make-up blogs recs, the whole nine. What works for other people doesn’t work for me (well, it works for a bit, then gotta start over).

      But the best product I’ve been using for the last year which keeps it mostly under control is Mario Badescu’s Rose Hips Nourishing Oil. You can get it at Ultra or on Amazon. I also use a primer which has purple and green tones to cover the redness. I like Almay’s Smart Shade, which works and won’t break your bank. Good luck!

    • crazydaisy says:

      Try giving up wheat, sugar, and possibly red wine. Keep track of what triggers you—when you feel yourself flush, that means you are reacting to a trigger. Helpful supplements to take are Betaine HCl with meals, and Cod Liver Oil, B Complex and Zinc. I cured my rosacea this way.

    • Felicia says:

      Valmont Dermatosic. It’s expensive. A tube lasts about 3 months because you don’t need to use much. If there is somewhere around where you are that sells Valmont products, see if you can get a little freebie tube to try it before forking out $100. Or a spa that does facials using Valmont products.

      It worked amazingly well for me. Even with an outbreak across the cheeks and nose, the redness is gone about 10 minutes after you use this stuff.

      • Pumpkin (formally soup, pie) says:

        @Felicia, are the effects of that product sustainable on the long term? I have sensitive skin and I could use something to combat the redness when it appears. I made some research, the blood vessels are very close to the upper layers of my skin and are quite fragile from what I can tell. So I don’t know what I can do about that. I used a green primer from Nyx, I wasted my money on it because it doesn’t work for me. I am wary of spending too much on products that might not work. I was thinking about going to Kiehl’s for an evaluation though.
        My biggest problem so far, luckily, was (severe) sun spots and I used an excellent serum and a moisturizing cream with SPF from an Israeli brand, cream in the morning and serum in the evening. In two months my sunspots disappeared. I bought them for the equivalent of $60 each and they worked. But they are not available internationally except for two face creams that cost $130.

      • Who ARE These People? says:

        oh I should add the ceramides seem to help, esp. in the winter, as another protective layer against the elements. My winter is windy and harsh and things get a lot worse then (Love how things clear up every spring, but winter – ugh!). I just get the little pink ampules from Elizabeth Arden, at Costco. It’s not cheap but not exhorbitant and I can get more than 1 application out of every ampule. My vanity has a little dish for them.

      • Felicia says:

        Pumpkin, I can really only speak from my experience so here is it:
        I used it every day in the morning for about 6 months. 1 pump from the tube, you don’t need much. It would banish the red on my cheeks and nose for the entire day. After about 6 months, I started spacing it’s use to once every two days, then three days because I no longer needed it every day. After about a year of using it in total, I was down to once a week, more of a preventive thing by that time. I still keep it on hand because it’s also good for minor breakouts etc, but my rosacea is completely gone and hasn’t come back.
        I discovered it after going for a facial at a spa. Told the person looking after me that I had to be careful with what I used on my face. I walked in there with a nice red bloom across my face, I walked out with no red at all. And 2 tubes of the stuff. In all over that first year, I probably went through 4 tubes of it. Probably would have been 3 if I hadn’t had a period of “more is better”.
        As an aside, I have a friend here who has a friend who recently developed rosacea. She picked some up in duty free on Cathay for him on my recommendation. Apparently, it’s now (3 months later) completely under control at the very least. He’d been also using Vitamin E as well, so he’s not sure which of the two is doing the trick. But given how well this worked for me, I would put good money on it being the Dermatosic.

      • Pumpkin (formally soup, pie) says:

        @Felicia: thanks so much! You’re a STAR !!

      • Felicia says:

        @Pumpkin: You’re welcome :) I hope it works as well for you as it did for me. Ideally, you’re living somewhere that has a store or a spa that sells Valmont so you can do a “test” of it before buying it. I’d be interested in knowing at a later date if you have the same results as I did!

  15. Patricia says:

    Well, it’s just one more way for her to play up her ugliest features to get attention.
    Seriously. Go look at her insta. So many shots of her face at the absolute worst angle, making her features look horrible. She’s not even that ugly at all! She’s perfectly fine! But just like she played up the extra weight for attention, she will play up her worst facial features and the worst angles with that terrible new haircut. She’s just an addict to all attention and she will get it however she can.

    • yyu says:

      I think people are more disturbed by the wretchedness of her character than the wretchedness of her face. Nobody cares about what she looks like but her. Not everyone needs to look like a painting.

      “Feel sorry for me b/c of a bunch of teenage boys called me fat on twitter!”

      boo hoooo… grow a pair.

  16. lucy2 says:

    Sounds like she had a temporary allergic reaction to makeup. Good Lord. Is that worth a whole write up and all this navel gazing about self image? She seems to have the luxury of time to turn every last problem into a huge ordeal.

    I’ve gotten acne on my chin since I was a teenager, but Clinique face wash and a Clairsonic has finally stopped it. Proactiv works too but I didn’t love putting all that on my skin every day.

  17. Marty says:

    I was blemish free until I hit my early 20s, then I started to get really bad cystic acne and had to go on an antibiotic.

    Now, I’m on a Korean skincare routine and my skin has never looked better.

    • H says:

      Korean products? Names, pretty please?!?

    • Kitten says:

      I was late to the Korean skin care regime and yes, it is an absolute game-changer.

    • Sophia's Side eye says:

      I don’t know if any of you guys will see this but… Try looking up the “r/AsianBeauty” ‘sub on Reddit. There are a ton of posts by users, product reviews, etc, and also links to blogs by Asian beauty bloggers. One thing about it is its really up to the individual what will work for you. Luckily the products themselves are quit reasonably priced. They can take a while to ship, but I’ve found some things on Amazon as well. Also, when you order from most sites that sell Asian beauty products they usually send a lot of samples too, so that’s nice.

      Just FYI, everyone who posts in that sub is really nice. It’s nothing like the rest of Reddit.

    • Marty says:

      Sorry for the late response- I really like the cosrx brand. Especially their BHA and AHA serums, they are gentle enough that you can use them daily/weekly. And their snail line is amazing.

      If you want to learn more I would suggest looking up some American bloggers that regularly review Korean skincare products, which is what I did. They usually go into a lot of detail about the products which I found super helpful in deciding which products to try out.

      • magnoliarose says:

        I wanted to add to your post that it is important to find bloggers that have a similar skin type.
        @Marty I use Cosrx too! I use the AHA/BHA clarifying toner and the honey sleep pack.
        Whamisa, Aromatica, Sulwhasoo, Naruko, Manyo Factory, Benton, Matsuyama, Kuramoto Bijn (rice bran oil and sake products) Amore Pacific, LJH, Swanicoco, Thank You Farmer and Evercos sheet masks are some brands I like but it is very individual.
        The reddit group has reviews of companies and buying guides too.
        One piece of advice is to start slowly and comparison shop. Since it is becoming trendy lately price gauging can be a problem.

    • magnoliarose says:

      I am a believer in Asian skin care and the multi step routine. I absolutely love the products and my skin actually glows. They call it chok chok-Korean for glowy dewy skin. There are blogs dedicated to it with reviews and skin types and conditions including rosacea.
      I am a skeptic about beauty products after years and years of experimenting and grabbing the newest thing but these products are the real deal. They are also wonderfully pampering and fun to use.
      There is a reddit group called Asian Beauty that is full of advice, information, recommendations, success stories, and photos.

      • magnoliarose says:

        One last thing. One of the things about Asian skincare is the emphasis on our moisture barrier and if that is damaged then skin becomes irritated and problematic. That is the first step to clear bright skin. Dr. Jart’s Ceramide line is out of this world for this. Ceramides are my obsession followed by different acids, rosehip oil, extracts, vitamin C, and sunscreens.
        I even made a new friend from this interest. It is fun, I promise.

  18. Prim says:

    I developed rosacea overnight in my 30s and I found it extremely distressing. While I’ve been through some serious tragedy in my life; like my husband nearly dying and watching my son lose the ability to speak when he was 2, still, waking up one morning with a skin condition was no picnic. I wouldn’t wish that experience on anyone and I understand how it can damage your self-esteem.

    In my experience, rosacea is the body’s way of telling you it needs help. If you fix your gut, your skin takes care of itself. A gluten free diet and keeping SIBO in check works for me.

    • Who ARE These People? says:

      Sorry all these things happened to you.

      I too have found rosacea distressing, and this is in the context of dealing with other, auto-immune disorders, musculoskeletal problems etc. Because it’s just so damn visible and out there. What is SIBO? I will also look it up.

      Rosacea, like psoriasis (which is auto immune), also has a heritable component and is found more often in fair-skinned populations that flush easily.

  19. AbbyRose says:

    I feel like I know more about her health and mental issues than her doctors. Is there nothing she won’t share? Whoever said she is deeply insecure was spot on. Her need for constant attention is exhausting.

  20. Tiffany says:

    If I was the most confident people on earth, even I know I never be Rhianna.

    • jwoolman says:

      It sounds as though she was at least paraphrasing someone else. I took the meaning to be that her self-esteem was high despite the criticisms about her appearance, not that she was perceived by other people as like Rhianna. It’s about inner confidence, feel like a rock star even though you know you’re not.

  21. brooksie says:

    I had the best skin in my teens and 20s but once I hit my late 20s, I was experiencing awful, cystic breakouts unlike anything I’ve ever seen before. It was absolutely horrible and I felt like I could never leave my house unless I had a full face of makeup. When I would go out at night I’d bring so much with me in my purse so that I could freshen up throughout the night. I barely let my now-husband see me without a full face of concealer. When I got engaged, the stress of wedding planning made my skin even worse. My birth control barely helped so I started seeing a dermatologist that prescribed me Spironolactone and suggested I use Skinceuticals products, and it took approximately 2-3 months to finally see a difference. I only wish I had started that regimen earlier because my skin was still not in top shape at the time of my wedding. I got my photos back and all I focus on are the pictures where you can see my acne scars, sadly.

  22. Freddy Spaghetti says:

    She’s exhausting and annoying. However, I have rosacea and blepharitis (ocular rosacea) and it’s awful.

    • magnoliarose says:

      Freddy, look into skin fungal infections, especially a yeast called Malassezia. Dermatophytes can be a culprit too.
      You can manage blepharitis without steroids and strong medications. Some oils make it worse such as coconut oil, olive oil, shea butter and argan oil.
      It is surprising how many skin issues come back to yeast externally and internally.
      My sister used diluted tea tree oil and boric acid flushes for her eyes and probiotics and it is has been gone for over a year. This worked for her but of course, it is individual.

  23. DesertReal says:

    Oh my goodness.
    She’s too too much.
    There’s so much extraness here, where to begin? That breakout looks like…just a bad breakout after wearing shitty makeup that doesn’t agree with you? Right?
    & who the feck revels in an “adolescent attitude?” I’m just going to stop right there, because if I don’t I’ll never be able to stop.

  24. island_girl says:

    I’ve shared this before, but its as though she’s stuck in a state of immaturity. She’s seems so needy and slightly bratty. Its all so exhausting. That said, I would probably struggle too if I had to deal with severe adult acne.

  25. JA says:

    That meme: You don’t wear makeup??…Well maybe you should!!… Hahaha I’m sorry but that part of her loving her perfect, “you barely need any makeup ” skin before!!! She is exhausting and it shows.

  26. Andrea says:

    I developed rosacea in my late 20′s, went for an allergy test in my early 30′s and found out I am sensitive to wheat and egg. I have gone gluten free (and egg free) and my rosacea has mostly cleared up. I get painful cystic acne when I cheat. I also have PCOS which doesn’t help matters either.

  27. Dani says:

    Lena is exhausting. Also, I loved the name “Lena” until she became famous and now, sadly, I can’t ever name a child or pet Lena without making the association with Ms Dunham.

    I too developed acne in my 30′s after stopping birth control in order to conceive. Dreadful stuff. Stress certainly didn’t help. All the dermatologists I went too recommended very mild products (eg: azelaic acid foam wash which was very very expensive) and basically told me that some women get acne when off birth control and trying to get pregnant and that it may go away or may not. Super helpful.

    I haven’t yet tried going vegan for health reasons, though if Bill Clinton can do it, I suppose I can too. Will be starting IVF soon so basically my skin is a mine-field.

  28. rebellia says:

    Rosacea is awful. I tried the whole cut out gluten, sugar, processed foods, and that worked for a while, but every time I slipped up a little, my skin would freak even worse than before, and then I would freak out, and my mental health suffered horribly.

    Not only did I have bumpy, pustule ridden skin, I couldn’t even enjoy a night out with friends anymore. That’s why I am wary of for stuff, it’s a real your mileage may vary thing.

    I ended up treating mine by going to an acupuncturist and getting lymph massages. The acupuncturist had me eating more, for some reason or another, like my body was getting too stressed going too long without food, and then massage therapy was lymph drainage to improve circulation and decrease stress.

  29. Twink says:

    I dislike her most of the time but I can sympathize. I’ve always had the most gorgeous skin and I had a reaction to my sunscreen and didn’t add two and two and thought I had developed rosacea and I got so anxious over my skin. I went from radiant “photoshopped IRL” (how some friends put it) skin to patchy, red, scaly skin. It affected me more than I would have ever thought. Thankfully, I ditched that sunscreen and got a different one and my skin is amazing again.

  30. Pandy says:

    Never suffered with acne, but did get roseacea in my 30s. Apparently, It’s pretty common for women – especially in 30s – with european background. So my doc prescribed metrogel and it worked just fine re bumps. I find the always red cheeks and nose super annoying! But as someone posted above, laser can remove a lot of the redness. Not permanently, but for quite a while.

  31. S says:

    Rosacea is not adult acne.

  32. A says:

    I’ve had horrible skin since I was 11. That’s more than a decade. Birth control and drinking lots of water helps but it never goes away permanently, and it’s been a familial problem to deal with adult acne (my mom had it too). If I had to waste as much time as she did fretting over her looks, I’d get nothing done.

    Not having to think twice about your skin is a godsend. It doesn’t make you “not vain” or anything like that. It just means that you can coast by on one more thing than others.

  33. NoKiddingCats says:

    Sweet Jesus Christ on a cracker. This woman is insufferable.

  34. Sonia says:

    What?? She never heard of láser?? I treat mine with laser.

  35. Ann says:

    This woman is a bitch with a capital C.

  36. Shijel says:

    Ooh cripes, can’t fault her for feeling down about that. I have rosacea myself, it tends to flare up around my mouth and my nasolabial folds AND the rims of my nostrils (OUCH) and it’s a pain in the ass. It flares up, it goes away, it flares up again and I look and feel like a red-splotched ass.

    It’s difficult because between flare-ups I have perfect skin (less perfect now that I’ve become a functioning alcoholic, but I’m working on that). And then it’s red and painful and itchy all of a sudden and… ughhh. And it bums me out that there is no real permanent treatment, that it can always come back. At least that’s what my doc told me, and I’ve had to deal with this crap ever since I hit puberty.

  37. PMNichols says:

    Reading about her makes MY skin break out.

  38. Vanessa says:

    Oh, Lena. She’s so extra but who am I to judge her? I got rosacea recently at the age of 39 after a lifetime of totally perfect, if freckly, skin. I was on a business trip to Amsterdam and I woke up for my first big day of meetings with… whiteheads all over my cheeks and nose and under my eyes. Horrible surprise and I admit I took it surprisingly hard. I was so happy about my nice skin and busy worrying about my chubby arms, and modestly squishy tummy, that to suddenly have to worry about body shape, bad hair life and all-new! bad skin sent me into a self-esteem black hole. I went to the derm and got some creams but tbh it’s just not the same. Now I wake up every morning and just brace myself to see if my face exploded overnight, or gently pat my cheeks all day to ensure I’m not growing a brace of ugly poppable whiteheads. :( Good luck, Lena. This is when it’s nice to have a lot of cash, girl!