Ursula, 51, is a lawyer and married mum of one and a step-mum to another son from Texas in the US but with British heritage.
Two years ago Ursula suffered from a rapid onset of severe menopausal rosacea at the start of her menopause. She was left upset and confused about what was happening to her skin. No doctors or dermatologists told her that her menopause may be responsible for the sudden change in her skin, which until that point had been clear for her whole adult life.
“My whole life I’ve always had near-perfect skin aside from a bit of teen acne. As an adult woman I never suffered from any skin issues like adult acne and was always blessed with a clear and glowing complexion.
However, in my late forties I suddenly started to develop red skin, reactive skin and spotty skin which appeared almost seemingly overnight. I ended up asking first my gynaecologist and then a dermatologist for advice about what on earth was going on with my skin and none of them ever suggested that it might be a menopausal skin condition that I was suffering from.
Two years ago, the dermatologist diagnosed me with acne rosacea but didn't mentioned that it could be linked to the fact that I had recently entered menopause nor did anyone ever suggest I switch to any kind of specific menopausal skincare.
I was put on prescription HRT and oestrogen and progesterone cream for my menopausal symptoms, and I still am.
Yet still no one mentioned that my acne rosacea may also be a menopause symptom pr that menopause is one of the common rosacea triggers. I thought teh two were completely unrelated and I was worried sick about why my skin had suddenly started behaving in such a crazy way after a lifetime of clear skin. I was obviously distraught about if it would get worse, which of course it did.
Eventually I worked it out for myself that my menopause and my rosacea were related, and that there is literally a condition called rmenopausal rosacea when I read an article last year on Winona, which was honestly more helpful than any doctor I saw about my skin, about lesser-known signs and symptoms of menopause and they included acne rosacea as often being triggered by menopause. They also said that rosacea menopause was especially sensitive and reactive.
Over the past two years I have literally tried everything to try and calm and clear my furious-looking painful bumpy skin.
Nothing that the dermatologist or gynaecologist prescribed worked at all. I was prescribed Niacin cream which is for rosacea probably in younger skin or maybe male skin and not menopausal rosacea, which is much more sensitive. Not only was the cream super expensive, but it also didn’t work and was panful when applied and in fact made my skin worse as it became very sensitive, especially to sun.
Having lost faith in prescription treatments, I tried doing my own research and trialled a whole collection of various creams and potions. No matter what I tried, over time my rosacea just got worse and worse. Not only was my skin red and bumpy it also started to really hurt which made sleeping uncomfortable and I was very aware of it during the day at work or out socially.
On some days I didn’t even want to leave the house due to the state of my skin, let alone go to work and face clients and colleagues. I found having to wear lots of makeup to cover up my skin uncomfortable and it would often cake and melt due during the day due to the heat and redness of my skin and end up looking even worse than if I wore no make-up at all. I was always having to go and touch it up and check it and was conscious of it sliding off my skin as my skin flushed red and hot at various times during the day.
I started to get comments from friends and colleague about why my face was so red and what was wrong with my face, things like that. I know people didn’t mean it badly but when you are already perfectly well aware of how your face looks and then someone points it out to you, it makes you even more conscious of it. I’m also an attorney so having a red flushed face is a long way from ideal in my type of work.
At family gatherings I’d get people making jokes about me having a few too many drinks etc. At one Christmas I was told I looked like Rudolf the red-faced gal with a tipsy red face, when in reality I had barely touched a drop as I knew how much my skin was affected by alcohol. I tried to laugh off the jibes as I know they were not meant to upset me but obviously it did upset me as my skin was such a mess and felt completely out of my control.
I was starting to lose hope that I’d ever find anything that calmed my skin down when I came across an account from a lady who had experienced similar symptoms to me during my research. She was British and had tried a British skin treatment for her rosacea menopause called Kalme Skincare.
I have British and Irish ancestry and so it made sense to me that a skin care product made for rosacea in the UK might work for my skin too, so I decided to order some. The ingredients were not only mostly natural but also totally different to anything I had tried in the US. The main ingredient was an extract from capers to control redness and reduce sensitivity.
That was last year and almost immediately, like within 2-3 days, my skin was calmer and less painful. It was the best cream for rosacea menopause I had tried.
The products, which came in a range, calmed both the redness, and cleared the spots and bumps as well as reducing the uncomfortable tight skin.
My skin was soon virtually back to how it was before my menopause started, the improvements were rapid and tremendous.
I feel now that I couldn’t do without these products. It was so comforting to discover something that has given me assurance that my skin is not going to stay the way it was forever or, my biggest dread of all, that it might get even worse. I feel I’ve finally got control back over my crazy sensitive skin after a long battle and that’s a huge relief.”