Get your health question answered instantly from our pool of 18000+ doctors from over 80 specialties
145 Doctors Online

By proceeding, I accept the Terms and Conditions

Dr. Andrew Rynne
Dr. Andrew Rynne

Family Physician

Exp 50 years

HCM Blog Instant Access to Doctors
HCM BlogQuestions Answered
HCM Blog Satisfaction

What causes redness on the skin?

Answered by
Dr. Ahmad Nazzal

General & Family Physician

Practicing since :2011

Answered : 343 Questions

Posted on Tue, 6 Sep 2016 in Skin Hair and Nails
Question: I have red splotchiness on my uppers. There are NO bumps, No patches of dry skin, no pimples, no plaque. It's just red. 100% of the time, since I was a child, it's been red. As soon as I getc hot or go out in the sun it immediately turns a deeper darker red. The same with my cheeks. I've always thought it was rosacea but I do not believe that it is because I have none of the symptoms that someone with rosacea would have. I can deal with my cheeks with makeup but my arms are becoming a self confidence issue for me. EVERYONE always says, oh wow, you sure are sunburned. So, what is it and how can I treat it. It is not that kilar.... whatever that word is. It's simply red, deeper in sun, if I XXXXXXX not so bad, I am fair skinned. Please help.
Answered by Dr. Ahmad Nazzal 7 hours later
Brief Answer:
Life style modification

Detailed Answer:
Dear XXXX,

Thank you for trusting HCM.

It would be helpful if you provide a photo of the described redness.

Anyhow since you managed to rule out Rosacea / Killaratosis Pillaris, my guess is that redness you described is physiological, it is common for fair skinned to have redness in the skin. I can totally understand your frustration, but if it disturbs you the answer is not by hiding it rather by accepting it as part of you.

Anyhow, what you can do is look for triggering factors in your diet and lifestyle that provokes it, it can be food, body products, being cold, or hot, nervous, stressed, angry etc.

You can do an allergy test to check if you have any intolerance for certain foods that manifest itself as this redness. If so anti-histamines might help in case of allergy.

I recommend you avoid excessive sun tanning, exposure to sun light will only damage your skin on the long run.

Psychologically, this should not affect your self-confidence. If anyone makes you feel bad about it you need to make it clear that it is not acceptable to do so.

Hope this helped, please feel free to ask further questions.

Kind regards,
Dr. Nazzal

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Priyanka G Raj
Follow up: Dr. Ahmad Nazzal 46 hours later
I've considered going to the tanning booth and deepening my color that way but it is very hard because I burn so easily then I peel and am white again except for these damn upper arms.

Possibly I could get the spray XXXXXXX at the salon and see what that does. Man, I suse do hope I don't turn orange like a certain person in the news right now.

Moving on. So, I kind of figured your answer was going to be exactly what it was. I wonder though, instead of incurring the cost of an allergy test, would it be reasonable to try an OTC antihistamine and see if it makes a difference? If so, would I notice a difference immediately or would a need a certain therapeutic level in myour system?

I really appreciate your time. I wasn't able to find where I could attach a photo for you. Wish I had.

I realize this is my one of two responses so hopefully this clears up all the questions I have. Oh, and thank you for the attempt at a confidence boost for me. Almost made me smile. Ok, anyway, will await yours or someone's response.
Answered by Dr. Ahmad Nazzal 2 hours later
Brief Answer:
Yes you can try it out

Detailed Answer:
Hi again,

Thank you for your follow-up question, I will try to be as informative to make the best out of your money and time.

Trying a self-tanning is a good option; make sure you are not allergic to it by trying it on a small part of the body before applying generously. It can give you possibility to flexibly XXXXXXX areas you want.

For the allergy test, you can try anti-histamine but that will not provide insights on what triggers the allergy if you have allergy. But yes it is the cheaper option.

My recommendation is that you create a diary. In that diary you write down when it flares, what were you doing an hour or so before, how do you feel, if you ate something in specific, if you had a specific social interaction. This will give you ideas if it is psychological in nature or due to a body reaction to something you eat or drink or you were exposed to like change in weather. Over the course of let’s say 2 weeks keep on recording it and then go back to it and try to find a pattern. If you find something that might be provoking it try to avoid and modify diet and lifestyle accordingly until you manage to reduce it and at least be in control of it.

and again avoid excessive sun exposure as it will lead to more skin problems on the long run.

What you can apply to help better the circulation is to apply aloe vera cream, coconut oil, it can help with the circulation and can reduce redness.

Finally I am glad that my answer almost managed to make you smile.

Kind regards,
Dr. Nazzal

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Nagamani Ng

The User accepted the expert's answer

Share on
Question is related to
Diseases and Conditions ,  
Medical Topics

Recent questions on  Dry skin

doctor1 MD

About 5 weeks ago my husband came home and started scratching all over his body. Then about a week later I started to have the same problem. We...

doctor1 MD

I developed a rush on my penis Can you recommend a cream that would be affective for that?

doctor1 MD

hello doctor, which soap is best in the market to maintain rich skin tone and get a satisfactory refreshing feeling?

doctor1 MD

My pcp checked me for hernia last week then referred me to a surgeon. I had hernia surgery 2yrs ago, where the surgeon used mesh to repair the...

doctor1 MD

For the past 2 plus years I have had a flat red rash that starts on my neck and works it s way around the whole of my neck. It becomes hot, sore,...