Rhofade User Reviews


Allergan’s Oxymetazoline based cream, Rhofade (oxymetazoline hydrochloride cream 1%) – for the treatment of the redness of rosacea is now generally available. Does it work to effectively and safely reduce the redness of rosacea? You have come to the right page to find out.

Some Oxymetazoline History

For rosacea sufferers it has been a long development cycle, the story starting with the emergence of Oxymetazoline as a rosacea active in 2007. Aspect Pharmaceuticals, Vicept Therapeutics and finally Allergan were owners of the intellectual property behind Rhofade, which first came to our attention through a 2005 patent (20050165079) by Shanler and Ondo.

So it has been a very long time since rosacea sufferers first starting hearing about the active in products like Afrin being a possible treatment for the redness of rosacea.

What is Rhofade?

Rhofade is being promoted as ;

The first and only α 1A adrenoceptor agonist approved for persistent facial erythema associated with rosacea in adults.

This is sales-speak as Mirvaso has been available for several years now and is similarly promoted as the only `α adrenoceptor agonist’.

Is Rhofade the same as Mirvaso?

If you were to solely read internet reviews of Mirvaso you could be forgiven for thinking that Mirvaso has been a very problematic product for Galderma (see Mirvaso Reviews). The adverse reaction rate to Mirvaso during the clinical trials before approval does not appear to be borne out by subsequent internet respondents. It isn’t clear why this appears to be the case – more frequent adverse reactions experienced outside the tightly controlled and monitored environment of the blinded clinical trials.

Every rosacea sufferer looking for relief from their red face is hoping that as claimed, Rhofade really will prove to be a “topical treatment of persistent facial erythema associated with rosacea in adults.”

Rhofade – the successor to Mirvaso?

It isn’t yet clear what Allergan have been able to do with the commonly available active ingredient Oxymetazoline to package it as palatable to the sensitive skin of rosacea sufferers. One clue appears to be the usage of “more selective for α1D-adrenoceptors are less prone to induce receptor desensitization than are α1A– or α1B-agonists” as found in the off the shelf products”. Although we know now that Rhofade is being promoted as a α 1A adrenoceptor agonist.

Certainly we are all hoping that Rhofade will become a well liked and tolerated rosacea treatment, that is true to the 1 year, only 3% adverse reaction rate generally experienced during the Rhofade clinical trials.

How much improvement will I see?

It is worth tempering your hopes for success with Rhofade with the published clinical trial data that shows that ;

Will RHOFADE work for me ?

Going on the published clinical data, basically one in 6 or 7 users of RHOFADE will have a 2-grade improvement in their facial redness, typically for 12 hours, and continuing for 29 once-daily uses.

Rhofade Reviews

So finally, rosacea sufferers are able to fill a prescription for Rhofade. Please let your fellow rosacea sufferes know what you think of Rhofade, we are especially interested in any rebound redness that your might experiences.

Please leave a comment below. Thanks!

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About the Author: David Pascoe started the Rosacea Support Group in October 1998. .

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141 Reader Comments

  1. Luke says:

    I had a terrible experience with Rhofade. I went to a dermatologist because of mild symptoms of rosacea. I used Rhofade for 4 days, and it made symptoms 10 times worse. I looked like I had a bad sunburn and pimples. My skin was also dry and burning.
    I stopped using it and I bought Eucerin Sensitive Skin Redness Relief Soothing Night Cream, and Eucerin Redness Relief Cleanser from Walgreens. They are helping. Now my skin is just a little pink in some spots.

  2. Juanita Holland says:

    Sadly, I must concur with other posters: you hope for relief and end up disappointed. I was given several samples of Rhofade on Wednesday, August 23rd. I applied a small size on Thursday, August 24th. It is now Friday, September 1st, and I won’t use the remainder of my samples. The first day (Thursday), the redness diminished completely. That sunburn look was gone! It was still gone on Friday. But by Saturday, a little of the redness had returned, and my skin looked oily. I don’t have oily skin. I continued to use Rhofade, but the redness was returning, and I still looked oily. Now, as Luke posted, I’ve got small bumps as if I had pimples (I don’t get them), and I look sunburned. HOWEVER: I have never experienced the burning or itching that others said they experienced. Just the bumps/tiny pimple breakout (forehead, between the brows, cheeks). I’m several years shy of hitting 50, and my rosacea only showed up the past ten years, so I haven’t been completely self-conscious about it. The Rhofade was my first ever attempt at trying to diminish the redness.

    • Heather Miller says:

      I am sorry this hasn’t worked for you. Like you, my Rosacea did not appear until my 40’s. I use Soolantra to get rid of the pimple like bumps and it works very well, you might want to ask for a sample. I do have great success with rhofade (it is my “hero”) and am so sorry it didn’t work for you. I hope you find something that works!

      • Juanita Holland says:

        Hello, Heather. It is exciting to see that Rhofade CAN be a miracle, but I’d love to know why success is in the minority. Future luck to you. Thanks for the tip on Soolantra.

    • Christy says:

      Exact same thing happened to me! Same sympoms same timeline but, i also have burning and itching!

  3. LeAnn says:

    Ok. I have been dealing with rosacea for just a couple of years and have been using Metro gel with very little results. My dermatologist gave me some Rhofade samples 3 days ago. I applied this cream for 3 days and I am about to crawl out of my skin. I have taken 2 doses of Benadryl today to try and calm the extreme itchiness! I also now have bumps all over my face that I never had before. I’m so disappointed!! I will never use this stuff again!

  4. Mike says:

    Rhofade sucks just like every other rosacea medication. The chances that it will work or under 15%, and the chances it will actually make your skin substantially worse are at least 85%. Not worth it. I took it and thought it was a miracle the first day, but my skin flared up when it wore off and it took me about a month to recover. My skin was on fire for about a month straight, all day everyday, after a single application. Not even close to a success. I think it’s an absolute scandal how incompetent the medical industry has been on rosacea, considering it’s 2017. They should have this figured out by now. Decades ago, actually. It’s scandalous that they haven’t

    • Heather Miller says:

      Sosorry it didn’t work for you. It has been a miracle for me. I have used it everyday since the beginning of May. I do hope you find something that works.

      • BB says:

        Hi Heather

        Can you describe your skin as best you can or point to a image which is similar to you regarding skin.

        I have diffuse redness on my cheeks only but it’s not itchy or anything else. Only has occasional flush with heat or stress.

        I haven’t any broken capillaries only showing redness.

        So you haven’t had any rebound effects?

        If your skin type is similar then I might try it when it becomes available in Europe.

        Thanks for any info

        • Heather Miller says:

          Your skin sounds about like mine. I had redness in cheeks, chin and nose (always asked if I got sunburned). I didn’t have any capillaries showing. If I could find a way to post a pic here I would….I wasn’t itchy or anything either. This cream definitely helps me. My nose is still a tad red at times, and under influence of extreme stressors (heat, alcohol) I did get a little red again, but on a daily basis, I can be makeup free

          • BB says:

            Thanks for the reply heather

            That’s great that it’s working for you. That gives me some hope that it may work for me also.

            The rebound stories have put me off a little not sure why some get rebound and some don’t I guess there is many different factors with skin.

            How long does rhofade last for when applying, is it roughly 12 hours and how long does it take to notice effects. Do you gradually return to normal redness after it wears off.

            Have you heard of the condition called kprf. It is very similar to rosacea. Type “kprf skin” in Google images. It looks similar to mine. Does your skin look similar to it?

            Most dermatologists haven’t heard of this kprf and I only recently heard about it on rosacea forum. I presumed I had rosacea but looks more like this kprf.

            Hopefully rhofade will work with kprf also.

            Thanks again for listening

          • Heather Miller says:

            Mine looks similar to the Krpf also, but it’s hard to tell from photos. The Rhifade worked within an hour and lasts all day. I have also noticed less redness in the mornings before I put it on. When I first sratrred using it my cheeks would not really tingle but fell “odd” but that sensation subsided after a few days. If you have acne like bumps with your redness, you could trt soolantra. That cleared my bumps up quickly. Good luck.

          • BB says:

            Thanks for the info heather. Much appreciated.

            Keep us updated on your progress.

    • pete says:

      Totally agree Milke , The Rosacea treatment industry is nothing but a farce , Its 2017 and they still cant treat redness – All involved should be ashamed of themselves .

  5. Ann says:

    I started using this product and I have super sensitive skin with zero inflammation from the product. Too early to know how it works but will post again in 30 days. Just from using the product for the last couple days and looking at the review post I am not sure if some of these post are a sham. I have super sensitive red skin and I’m not oily or broken out. Hmm! I always try to ready the negative before the postive but thinking this is far fetched.

    • Katherine says:

      Ann. I have super sensitive skin too. This product worked wonders for me for 2-3 days. But then I had a horrible reaction that took over a week to go away. Closer to 2 weeks. I assure you. These comments are not a sham. I’ve been following it for a bit and it seems like very few people have success. My problem is I’m sensitive to alcohol (mostly figured it out after the fact) and this product had 4 types of alcohols which aren’t the best for your skin anyway.

    • Toni says:

      I don’t know that this is far-fetched. I just looked up this Thread about rhofade. I used it for 3 Days samples for my dermatologist. I woke up in the middle of the night and my face was burning so bad and it was swollen it felt like a really bad sunburn. I took pictures of it. I took pictures because I was so confused. My dermatologist told me I should buy this cream because it doesn’t give you a rebound redness. I was using mirvaso and actually that wasn’t as bad as what I experienced with the real fade. I will say I did not use the mirvaso every single day. But definitely could mean I’m just as sensitive to mirvaso I’m glad you’re doing well. The metronidazole works the best for me.

  6. Patty says:

    Has anyone tried Finacea? I got a prescription from my Dr. along with a sample of Rhofade. But I don’t know if I want to try the Rhofade with all the problems I am reading.

    • Susan says:

      Hi Patty. Finacea and Rhofade do two different things. Finacea is used to basically kill bacteria on your skin that leads to some Rosacea symptoms (pimples, bumps, etc…) The Rhofade is to dull or temporarily eliminate the redness on your face by constricting blood vessels. I’m sure I’m not the only one who uses a multi-prong/medication attack for their rosacea, so I basically use both of these during the day and Soolantra at night to help control and treat my Rosacea. I’ve had zero problems with any of the meds. The only one that did bad things for me was Mirvaso. If the flushing/redness on your face is something that makes you unhappy (mine sure does) then it may be worth trying the Rhofade to see if it’s effective for you. I think all Rosacea sufferers are constantly trying different things to find the right combo to help their unique version of this shit condition. Hope this helps!

  7. V says:

    I had very mild redness and was surprised when my dermatologist during a routine check-up diagnosed me with rosacea. He gave me a few rhofade samples. I only applied it once and discontinued because of weird tingling sensations all over my face. In about two days after that my face turned red and was covered with tiny pimples. I’ve never had those before. It’s been a week since and my face is slightly less red and no more pimples but overall it’s still much worse than before rhofade. I’ve never had any reaction to alcohol until then either but now a single drink makes my face red. I reported my case to FDA and will be looking for a different dermatologist. I think it’s totally irresponsible to give out samples of medication that can cause such lasting damaging effects. Hopefully, someone will launch a class action suit against Allergan.

  8. Susan says:

    I switched from Mirvaso to Rhofade when it first came out and it has been amazing for me. Mirvaso was a complete nightmare. Yes it got rid of my redness, but once the medication wore off it came roaring back 100 times worse than before. It became a vicious circle and on days when I didn’t use the Mirvaso my redness was horrible. I haven’t remotely had that problem with Rhofade. It takes away redness much more naturally than Mirvaso and I don’t have that horrible flare up at the end of the day caused by the medication wearing off. I’ve actually seen my redness lessen over time now that my face isn’t dealing with the medication boomerang effect. I’ve been dealing with Rosacea for about 20 years now and the combo of Rhofade and Soolantra have helped me get better control of my symptoms. Now if someone would please just find a cure so none of us have to ever deal with this again I’d be very grateful

    • Mike says:

      There ain’t no cure coming – don’t hold your breath. It’s nearly 2018 and they haven’t even managed to find A SINGLE EFFECTIVE TREATMENT for rosacea that makes life manageable – not one. The odds of them finding a cure in the next 20 years are 0. There’s a 0% chance. I think, realistically, we won’t have any treatments that work even poorly until 2050 at the earliest (right now we dont even have medications that work poorly – they just ruin lives), and I doubt there will ever be a cure. But if there is, it won’t be for another century or two.

      Rosacea is one of the only conditions where you’re no better off getting it in 2017 than you would’ve been if you got it in the year 1500 BC. There are a tiny number of conditions that meet that criteria, and rosacea is certainly one of them.

      In other words, there’s been no advancement in our ability to treat/manage/cure rosacea whatsoever from the moment the first homosapiens walked the earth to present day. None. Zilch. Nada. We’re in the same position with regards to treating/managing rosacea today as we were 20,000 years ago. Just no progress whatsoever, on any dimension. You can’t say that about 99.99% of health conditions. It’s a remarkable feat

  9. Val says:

    I seem to have a middle of the road experience. It’s not great but provides some improvement. I’ve haven’t had any adverse reactions. Mirvaso was a disaster for me, exactly the same experience as others, worked great for a day or two, but then my face became nuclear to the point where people were concerned about my well being, and skin was in general much worse when not using Mirvaso.

    • Bill says:

      Of all the prescription creams I have tried, what actually works best for me is a moisturizer lotion called CeraVe
      Renewing SA Lotion

  10. Patti says:

    I I went to the dermatologist and got samples and RX for Rhofade for my mild rosacea. After using it for 3 days, I started noticing a lot of pimples popping up on my nose and cheeks. Also my skin was burning and itching very badly! My face was flushed and a little swollen. It was so painful I quit using it. It has only been 2 days and my face is still red, flushed and broken out and still itches. The burning is better after using a moisturizer. I thought maybe I was just having a reaction from it, but it looks like a lot of people are having the same issues with it. I have tried a lot of rosacea medications and have never had such bad side effects as these.

  11. David Pascoe says:

    Comment from Ellen.

    “It’s not on my Rx formulary and I was quoted $488 for a tube! Insane.”

  12. David Pascoe says:

    Comment from Beverly.

    “very costly, $750 in the USA and insurance does not cover this.”

    • Toni says:

      David Pascoe, I just found this group but I just want to say , Thank you”.

    • Janis says:

      Just bought today and my insurance did cover, thankfully. Now I am scared to try on my mild rosacea. Maybe I will try on one side of my face and see if I have any reaction.

  13. James says:

    I have tried: Cortisteriods, Protopic, Rhofade, Elidel, Soolantra, Minocycline, Eucrisa and the most relief I have ever received is with

    1) Collidial Oatmeal 2%
    2) Cerve (sp ?) Lotion

    I have rosacea and atopic dermatitis, Rhofade lacked any efficacy for me.

  14. Angela says:

    Tried on/off for a few weeks. Had to stop using…made my skin worse, no breakout…just really really red. Also felt like it was burning after first applying.

  15. Tim says:

    I went to my dermatologist last week and she recommended Rhofade. I had never heard of it, but thought it could not be that bad as it was just a cream. My Rx did not cover it, but I was able to pick it up for $50 with an online coupon from Rhofade. I put a pea amount on my face as directed 2 days ago and my face has been bright red and burning since then. It is by far the worst that it has ever been even on my worst red face day. I will not put another dose on my face at this point and am out $50. Very disappointing. I was hoping to read some reviews that it improved after a few days, but it does not seem to look that way.

    • Vanessa says:

      I had a similar experience. Both my Father and Brother have had the redness for years. My brothers grow worse and the “spidery veins” on his face became extremely evident. He is twelve years older than me. I am just over 50 and mine has started to become “brighter red”. I wanted to head off the issue with the prominent veins in my face. The dermatologist gave me a script for Rhofade in December. Suprisingly it was covered by my insurance. I have been disappointed with the results since using it. The redness only actually increased. I did not have an issue with the bumps or pimples. I have discontinued use. I am glad that I can cover the redness with my make up, but on a no make up day, I hate looking into the mirror.

  16. Allan Thomas says:

    IPL works amazing well. I dare say I am cured of Red Flair ups and tiny spider veins.https://www.rosacea.org/rr/2005/summer/article_1.php

  17. Barbara says:

    Anxious to try it. The PI says it’s successful in 18% of users. That’s not very promising, but hopeful that I am in the 18%. Cash pay price is $500. My insurance copay was $25 and I was able to use the company co-pay card and brought my copay down to $0. Picked it up tonight. I’ll let you know my results.

  18. Joan Spencer says:

    My government insurance will not allow me to buy Rhofade. If I purchase it on my own through Walmart they quoted me just under $300 for a small tube. Needless to say, I did not get it.

  19. Paula Couch says:

    I have been using Rhofade since early October. I have samples from my dermatologist. I have been very happy with how well it works on my almost constant facial redness. I was diagnosed with Rosacea 22 years ago. It was reasonably well controlled until about 3 years ago. My dermatologist introduced me to Soolantra earlier this year. I appreciate using both. I’m 66. My insurance requires prior authorization for Rhofade. Maybe I had better get my doctor to get that done before the end of the year and hopefully get a 90 day prescription through mail-order. That might last me most of 2018.

  20. Elizabeth says:

    Similar to my experience with Soolantra, a few days use of Rhofade resulted in a terrible flare up for me.

    I typically have slight redness on my cheeks and a bit worse on my nose. I have not had any pimples since I started minocyclin daily. I use Paula Begoun products to cleanse, tone and moisturize my skin. Occasionally I use Avar Green on affected area.

    Within a couple of days using Rhofade I had flaming red cheeks and nose and both were covered in pimples. I even got pimples on my forehead which I’ve never had before. Once I realized the effect, I stopped the Rhofade. Unfortunately my face got worse before better. The pimples lasted almost two weeks. As it wound down, my cheeks and nose were cracked, peeling and itchy.

    I’m done trying new products. Back to my simple routine.

  21. Alysann B Whitley says:

    I just started using Rhofade, and I’ve never had a reaction this bad. I used it for a few days but I had some added redness and tingling symptoms. I stopped taking it until I was out of school (only 2 days of classes left). After classes I took it again. It worked the first few days, but it got worse. So much worse. I haven’t taken Rhofade in 4 days and the symptoms keep getting worse. Whole room is hot. Burning. Tingling. Red all the time. The pain is so intense 🙁 disappointed

  22. Stephanie Perry says:

    I was hopeful that Rhofade would work for me after the redness on my face practically went away after the first application. However, the second and third day I had a little redness showing though, and I began breaking out with small iitchy pimples where I had applied the cream. By day 4 I felt my skin was redder than before I had started the Rhofade, and I had burning and itching with little bumps all over, as if I was having an allergic reaction. I stopped using the Rhofade cream on day 5, because the itching, burning, and redness had gotten so bad. It has been 3 days since I last applied the Rhofade, and I still look and feel like I’m having an allergic reaction, covered in little itchy bumps, and extremely red. I wish I never tried the Rhofade because it’s made my skin look so much worse than it ever was before using the product. I am really hoping the itching and bumps will subside soon, but I haven’t had any improvement yet.

    • Juanita says:

      It’s almost like we’ve traumatized our skin, by sampling Rhofade. Because (for me, at least), it took over a month for my skin to return to normal. Not sure about how others fared on here. Good luck to you.

  23. Daniel says:

    I was prescribed Rhofade by my derm. I applied it on the first day they gave it to me. On the first day I applied it, I saw results within the first 30 minutes which was quite impressive but I didn’t want to get too excited. So the first day was great. On the second day, I didn’t really see any results. Waking up on the third day in the morning being that I apply it in the morning and on the night, my face was full of weird looking bumps. I guess I got an allergic reaction. But I kept applying to see if maybe by any chance it was something else, although I had never had these weird looking bumps on my skin. So on the fifth day I stopped using it and I called my derm and she told me to go and see her so that she may see what she can do. She gave me these small samples of this steroid cream which help take off the bumps. So unfortunately it didn’t work for me. The derm has giving me Mirvaso and I’m getting mixed results. One cheek gets very red while the other one is much clearer.

  24. Regina F. says:

    Hello! I’ve been reading your comments and I’m literally amazed at what some of you are experiencing and what I sort of am with Rhofade.

    My Rosacea started in my early 40’s but I didn’t seek help until I saw my family doctor a year ago. My rosacea flares with a host of things: heat, foods, medicines, what have you. I have very sensitive skin. I don’t wear make-up, drink alcohol. I have a host of autoimmune diseases along with muscular dystrophy. When the rosacea first started it was on my right cheek now it has spread to the left, chin, and nose. When my family doctor examined me she saw the capillaries showing.

    When I’m in a flare, I feel so hot and my face feels tight and like I was burnt.

    I saw my new dermatologist on Thursday. Hubs and I were not pleased. He did not explain anything or give me information. He was only in the room five minutes! He gave us samples of this and and called in a prescription for it – actually pushed a new pharmacy on us! We decided I’ll not be going back.

    I started the Rhofade but didn’t notice any difference. When I applied it, I noticed pain immediately. I know now that is a side effect after researching. I also believe I have a pimple that started inside my nose today that wasn’t there until I started this cream. What about headaches? Anyone else experience this? The Rhofade also didn’t clear the rosacea. It would last four hours give or take. Oh, and when I was reading the information about this medicine on the web, it said if you are taking a beta blocker, you shouldn’t be taking this! Well I am! I’m not going to continue this medicine for several reasons.

  25. Rebecca Webb says:

    Began using Rhofade three days ago. Worked wonderful on the very first application…I actually had pretty, pale skin and felt like I looked “normal” for the first time since I can remember. Now, three days later, my skin is considerably more red, I have pimple-like bumps on my face, my skin burns, and I have a rash all along my midsection. Has anyone else gotten a rash away from the application site? I wonder if I keep trying Rhofade…how long after application before I can apply moisturizer and my makeup? Anyone else tried Oracea? I was prescribed this also but have not started it yet…

  26. Cindy says:

    I had used Mirvaso for about a year with great success. (Mirvaso in the morning, Sootantra in the evenings). My dermatologist recommended Rhofade a few months ago as another option with longer duration against redness. Rhofade has been everything my dermatologist stated. My face is completely clear of redness. However, I get terrible headaches from the product and sometimes my face feels slightly numb and tight. It works great, but the headaches are just too much. I’ve gone back to using Mirvaso and Soolantra.

    • bb says:

      Hi Cindy

      Can you describe your redness. Do you only get it on your cheeks and does it flush with heat etc. Is it kprf?

      It gives me a bit of hope when hear good stories like yours that it works.

      So you have had no rebound redness with mirvaso or rhofade? Do you use it everyday.

      Rhofade still not available in Europe here yet. Still scared to try mirvaso because of all the horrible rebound stories.

      Thanks for any info

  27. Chloe says:

    I started using Rhofade last week and it seemed like a miracle at first but then it started working off and on sometimes it would work and other timesnot so much, but now it seems to be leaving these small bumps all over my face. They are not pimples, also my face is still red after using the product now. I have medium rosacea, but I get flare ups that can get bad. I’m 19 year old female.

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