What Is This Thing On My Face?

I have a lot of customers who come in asking for a cream to help with the dry, flaky and slightly itchy patches of skin on their face. Most of the time when the skin is itchy it means you have some form of dermatitis.

What is dermatitis? There are two types.

Irritant contact dermatitis is the most common type. This nonallergic skin reaction occurs when a substance damages your skin’s outer protective layer. Some people react to strong irritants after a single exposure to items like solvents, bleaches, pesticides and the like. You likely came into contact with the irritant and touched your face. The sensitive skin on your face reacted and broke out in the patches.


 Photo credit: Very Well Health


A cream can help to soothe the skin, but it isn’t likely to help the problem go away. I generally suggest trying a one percent hydrocortisone cream for a few days. If the issue persists or worsens, it’s best to consult a doctor. Hydrocortisone is a steroid, and topical steroids can cause thinning of the skin. Obviously, consistent use on the face is not advised.

Allergic contact dermatitis occurs when a substance to which you’re sensitive (like an allergen) triggers an immune reaction in your skin. It usually affects only the area that came into contact with the allergen. But it may be triggered by something that enters your body through foods, flavorings, medicine, or medical or dental procedures.


 Photo Credit: Getty Images


Whether caused by irritant or an allergic reaction, the problem should get better on its own within a couple of weeks. If it doesn’t, it’s possible that the rash has become infected by bacteria and will require an anti-biotic.


  • The latest from Angela
I have been a beauty junkie for what seems like forever, but before I did anything about it, I went to law school. (Yes, my life is a little like the reverse of Legally Blonde.) Then, I worked as a prosecutor in Sonoma County after which I moved to the DC area with my husband in ’97. I served as Majority Counsel to the Senate Banking Committee followed by a year-long stint at a lobbying firm. You get the picture. It was then that I decided to act on my dream of becoming an entrepreneur. Finding my favorite beauty products proved to be impossible without stepping foot in a mall–the horror. So, I decided to bring my favorites to Alexandria. A few trips to New York and a flight to France and Bellacara was born in March 2000.

Located in historic Old Town Alexandria, for more than 17 years Bellacara has been Northern Virginia's preeminent boutique for high end cosmetic, skincare and haircare products. At Bellacara you will find premiere beauty products that have been carefully edited by the store’s owner, Angela Sitilides, who personally tests all the products sold in store. The boutique carries only the best product lines – Kiehl’s, Jouer, Dr. Dennis Gross, Christophe Robin, Moroccan Oil, Bumble & Bumble, Fresh, Molton Brown, Skinceuticals, Smashbox, Stila, Mario Badescu, Clarins, Dermalogica, Kevyn Aucoin, Kai, Child, St. Tropez, Smith and Cult, and many more.


1000 King Street
Alexandria, VA 22314


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