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Finacea 15% Gel

Finacea 15% Gel (30g)

Order before 3pm for delivery from Fri. 30 Jul and Mon. 02 Aug.

Product Information

  • Age: 18

    Maximum per order: 3

  • Pregnancy: Not suitable

    Breastfeeding: Not suitable

Finacea is a prescription-only gel used to treat rosacea: a common skin condition that causes redness, flushing, swelling and a bumpy rash to appear on the sufferer’s face.

Finacea can also be used to treat milder forms of acne on the facial area, particularly if stronger topical treatments are not working well for you.

Although Rosacea affects 1 in 10 people, its exact cause is unknown and there is currently no cure. There are, however, medications like Finacea that will successfully treat the symptoms and appearance of rosacea.

If you’re affected by rosacea or acne and you’d like to know more about how to treat it using Finacea, you’ve come to the right place.

We’ll answer any questions you have about Finacea on here so that you know what to expect if you decide to use this treatment. Read on to find out more.


What is Finacea gel?

In adults, Finacea cream can be used to treat rosacea, a bumpy rash that occurs on the face. Little is known about rosacea, even though it affects 1 in 10 people. It is thought to occur when peptides in the skin become inflamed. People with rosacea will go through periods of flare-up and remission. Flare-ups can occur due to triggers such as stress, caffeine, alcohol, physical exertion and certain types of light and weather. If a flare-up is particularly bad, a treatment such as Finacea may be prescribed.

Finacea gel is a medication made by Bayer and is used to treat the symptoms of acne rosacea. It should be applied directly to the affected skin on the face twice each day. In general, the benefits of this medication are felt after a month of use. Finacea gel is manufactured by Bayer in the UK and is not available over the counter without a prescription.

More details can be found on our about Finacea page.


How does Finacea work for rosacea?

Finacea contains the active ingredient azelaic acid. Azelaic acid works by blocking the body’s natural production and growth of keratin surface skin cells — which are responsible for clogging up pores.

By tackling the production and growth of these surface skin cells, Finacea gets to the root of the problem and helps to unblock pores and sebaceous glands (small glands in the skin which release sebum, an oily matter meant to lubricate your skin). This means your pores and sebaceous glands can get rid of excess sebum clogging your skin and creating problems.

As a result, papules, pustules and spots are much less likely to occur on the face. This also means that the swelling and redness of the skin normally associated with rosacea decreases too.

The azelaic acid in Finacea gel also works by killing off the bacteria on the skin that is associated with acne and rosacea. This bacteria — propionibacterium — feeds off your body’s sebum and produces fatty acids and waste products. These lead to irritation of the sebaceous glands, which inflames them (causing the redness and swelling) and creates spots and bumpy rashes on the face.


How long does it take for Finacea to work?

If used correctly, Finacea can reduce the visible effects of rosacea over the course of a few months. Improvements in rosacea or acne can usually be seen within the first month of using the gel.

However, it’s important to mention that you need to be consistent with your use of Finacea: improvements will only occur if you are regularly applying the gel to the area, twice a day (more on the application and use of Finacea below).

Any breaks in your use of Finacea will impede the success rate of the gel. This is due to azelaic acid in the gel no longer unclogging the pores and glands on your face, or killing the bacteria on the skin.


Rosacea symptoms

Rosacea is a condition that normally affects the face. Common symptoms include:

  • Flushing
  • Redness
  • Blood vessels showing through the skin
  • Thickening of the skin
  • Bloodshot eyes
  • Eye dryness
  • Red bumps and spots
  • Papules
  • Pustules
  • Cystic acne

The condition is fairly common in the UK, with up to 10% of people suffering from the condition. Despite its high rate of incidence, medical knowledge of rosacea and its causes are fairly limited. Some medical professionals believe that the activity of peptides, small molecules in the skin, cause the reaction. It is thought that when stimulated by certain factors, peptides interact with the immune cells in the skin, triggering an inflammatory reaction.

Another possible cause is microscopic mites, known as Demodex folliculorum, which usually live harmlessly on the skin. If their population grows for one reason or another, this could create rosacea-like symptoms. Irregular blood vessel function is also associated with the condition.


Rosacea triggers

Certain rosacea sufferers report that various triggers can induce a flare-up of the condition. 

The most common ones include:

  • Stress
  • Alcohol
  • Caffeine
  • Dairy
  • Physical exertion
  • Prolonged or intense exposure to UV light
  • Hot or cold weather conditions
  • It is possible that some avoidance strategies may help to limit symptoms, but generally, only a prescription will really help to clear up the condition.


Does Finacea work for everyone?

Finacea has a relatively high success rate when it comes to treating rosacea and acne, and many users report an improvement in their condition thanks to Finacea. For more feedback from users, see our Finacea customer reviews section below.

However, Finacea doesn’t work for everyone. Some people may find that Finacea makes no difference to their rosacea or acne and will need a stronger medication — alternative treatments, like Soolantra Cream, can be found here. A small percentage of users may also find that Finacea has an adverse effect and causes skin irritation and flare-ups. For more information on possible side effects, head over to our Finacea side effects page.

If you have been using the gel regularly for four to eight weeks without seeing any improvement to your condition or you believe your condition to be getting worse, you should stop using the gel and seek medical advice.

Additionally, you should avoid using Finacea if you are under 12, pregnant or breastfeeding. You should speak to a doctor or pharmacist if you fall into any of these categories and are planning on using Finacea.


Do you need to use Finacea with moisturiser?

You do not need to use a moisturiser with Finacea, but if you are prone to very dry skin, you may want to moisturise. Avoid heavily perfumed moisturisers, however, and stick to moisturisers for sensitive skins. You can apply moisturiser before or after Finacea — it’s up to you.


Does Finacea have steroids in?

No, Finacea does not contain steroids. For the full list of active and inactive ingredients in Finacea gel, check this list.


What else does Finacea help with?

Finacea is good for treating a number of skin problems associated with rosacea and acne. Below we’ve covered what Finacea can and cannot help with. 


Does Finacea reduce redness?

Finacea does help to reduce the redness associated with rosacea. You should start to see this redness settling down within the first four weeks of using the topical treatment. 


Does Finacea help for hyperpigmentation?

Hyperpigmentation is a medical term used to describe darker patches of skin resulting from excess melanin production, which can be caused by acne scars. If applied to this area, Finacea can help to reduce the appearance of hyperpigmentation.


Does Finacea get rid of blackheads?

The active ingredient in Finacea — azelaic acid — works to unblock pores and sebaceous glands to stop oily build-ups, therefore reducing the formation of spots such as blackheads.


Does Finacea help with melasma?

Melasma is a common skin condition which causes brown or greyish-brown pigmentation on the skin, resulting in patches, usually on the face. The azelaic acid in Finacea can help to lighten this pigmentation and reduce the appearance of melasma after use.


Does Finacea help with wrinkles?

Although not a proven effect of the gel, Finacea may help to reduce wrinkles associated with rosacea.


Does Finacea help with acne scars?

Finacea can help to fade light surface acne scars and minimise their appearance over time.


Finacea gel vs. other rosacea creams

Finacea vs. Rozex gel

What are the differences between Finacea and Rozex rosacea gel? The most notable difference is that Finacea contains azelaic acid, whereas Rozex gel contains the antibiotic Metronidazole. Both are prescription-only topical treatments available to buy online from The Independent Pharmacy. Find out more about Rozex in our guide: What is Rozex?.


Finacea vs. Mirvaso and Soolantra

  Finacea gel Mirvaso gel Soolantra cream

Active ingredient

Azelaic acid

Brimonidine tartrate


Used to treat:

Rosacea & acne



Prescription only




How it works

Prevents keratin cells from blocking pores & kills bacteria on the skin

Decreases the flow of blood through the vessels (reduces redness)

Anti-inflammatory & anti-parasitic


Finacea & Skinoren 

Finacea and Skinoren cream contain the same active ingredient, but at different strengths. Skinoren cream is stronger and used to treat mild, hormonal, and cystic acne, as well as acne scars, and dark spots. 

Finacea is slightly milder and is therefore licensed to treat rosacea and milder acne.

Click here for customer reviews of Skinoren.


Why choose The Independent Pharmacy?

  • Fast – receive your treatment as quickly as the next day
  • Free online consultation service with one of our registered GMC doctors
  • Discreet packaging & confidential service – we don't include any branding or pharmacy logos on our packaging, meaning you can get your treatment delivered anywhere
  • UK-based and GMC UK registered doctors
  • Only clinically-proven prescription medication available
  • Regulated by the General Pharmaceutical Council and Care Quality Commission
*Prescription medicines are supplied subject to a medical consultation at the discretion of a doctor.

How to apply Finacea gel

Finacea is easy to use. Make sure you wash your hands thoroughly before you start the application. Then, clean the affected area with water and a mild cleansing lotion or soap — avoid anything too fragrant or strong.

Once you have cleaned the area, simply apply the gel directly to the affected skin on your face, gently massaging the gel into your skin until it has been absorbed.

Finacea should be used sparingly: roughly 0.5 g of the gel is enough for your entire facial area.

Finacea is an irritant, so try to avoid your eyes when you are applying it to your face. If you do get a bit in your eyes, mouth or nose, then rinse immediately with plenty of water. You should also wash your hands once you have finished applying the gel.

Apply the treatment to the affected areas twice a day (in the morning and evening) or as prescribed by your GP.

Finacea gel side effects

Not everyone will experience side effects when they use Finacea, but for some they may include burning, stinging, itching or dry skin where the gel is applied.

Very common (>1 in 10 people):

  • Burning
  • Pain
  • Itching


  • Rash
  • Tingling
  • Numbness
  • Dry skin


  • Contact dermatitis
  • Acne
  • Abnormal redness
  • Scaling
  • Warmth
  • Skin discolouration


  • Hypersensitivity
  • Worsening of asthma

If you are concerned about these effects, or if the product affects you in any other way, stop using it and talk to your doctor or pharmacist.

For more information, read our full Finacea side effects page.

Finacea gel ingredients

The active ingredient contained in Finacea is azelaic acid 15%. Finacea gel also contains the following inactive ingredients to make up the complete product:

  • Lecithin
  • Triglycerides (medium chain)
  • Propylene glycol
  • Polysorbate 80
  • Carbomer 980
  • Sodium hydroxide
  • Disodium edetate
  • Purified water
  • Benzoic acid

Finacea warnings

Reading the following warnings carefully to ensure you are selecting an appropriate product.

Topical Finacea gel is unsuitable for you if you are allergic to any of its ingredients.

Keep this medicine away from the eyes, mouth, nose or genitals.

Do not use other skin treatments while using Finacea gel.

Finacea gel contains benzoic acid, which can mildly irritate the skin, eyes and mucous membranes. Propylene glycol may also have an irritant effect.

If you do get the gel in any of these areas, wash them immediately with a large amount of water. If the irritation continues, speak to your doctor. Wash your hands after each application.

It is advised that you avoid using alcoholic cleansers, tinctures, astringents, abrasives and peeling agents at the same time as using Finacea gel.

Cases of worsening asthma after using azelaic acid cream have been reported rarely during post-marketing surveillance.

There have not been any interaction studies performed between Finacea gel and other medications. The ingredients present in the gel give no indication of any undesired interactions that could adversely affect the safety of the product.



There have been no well-controlled studies on the effects of topically administered azelaic acid cream in pregnant women.

Animal studies have shown some effects when Finacea gel is used during pregnancy, embryo-fetal development, parturition or postnatal development. These effects have been observed in animals with 3-32 times the maximum recommended human dose.

For these reasons, caution should be exercised when prescribing azelaic acid to pregnant women.



The body absorbs less than 4% of topically applied azelaic acid gel and this does not increase azelaic acid exposure above physiological levels. 

Do not allow infants to come into contact with treated skin/breast.

Please read all packaging and the Patient Information Leaflet before taking any new medicine and inform your doctor of medicines you are taking or intend to take.

Delivery & Shipping Information

Please note that due to the current situation with COVID-19, Royal Mail are experiencing some delays. This may mean that your order takes longer to arrive than you would normally expect. We are working hard to ensure that, where possible, all orders placed before 15:00 are still dispatched the same working day.


UK Orders

We offer FREE standard tracked delivery on orders over £40.

The following delivery options are available:

  • Standard Tracked Delivery - 2 - 3 day delivery - £2.95
  • Express Tracked Delivery - 1 - 2 day delivery - £4.45
  • DPD Next Day - 1 - 2 working days - £6.95
  • Special Delivery (Guaranteed before 21:00) - £8.95
  • Saturday Guaranteed before 21:00 - £10.45

Important Delivery Information

All our orders are sent out using Royal Mail (unless stated). We always aim to dispatch all Royal Mail & DPD orders received before 15:00 the same working day. Any orders received after 15:00 or over the weekend will be dispatched the next working day. Orders will not be dispatched on weekends or bank holidays.

All orders are subject to approval by our team of doctors and pharmacists. Your delivery date in the checkout is subject to your consultation being approved by our healthcare team.

All orders can be fully tracked from your dispatch email, in your online account and from any notifications from your courier.

We ensure all parcels are in plain packaging for discreet delivery of your medicines and pharmacy goods. Where possible, we will attempt to size all parcels to fit through your letterbox in tamper-proof packaging. By placing an order on our website, you confirm that it is safe and appropriate for a package containing medicines to be posted through your letterbox, if the carrier is able to do so. You should notify our customer support team if it is not safe for the package to be posted through the letterbox, for example due to animals or small children.

Deliveries containing pharmacy-only or prescription medicines may require a signature on receipt. 

Delivery is free for all NHS prescriptions.


Royal Mail


  • Fully tracked delivery
  • SMS & email notifications
  • Four-hour delivery window
  • Change delivery date directly with Royal Mail
  • Update delivery location - add a Safeplace, preferred neighbour, or update your delivery location to a local Post Office or Royal Mail Customer Service Point.

Royal Mail are the most widely recognised mail delivery company in the UK. Being on the UK’s 29 million doorsteps six days a week means they offer unparalleled price and convenience. The Independent Pharmacy uses Royal Mail’s Tracked 48, Tracked 24, and Special Delivery Guaranteed parcel services to offer reliable, fully-tracked delivery at very competitive prices. Your Royal Mail parcel will arrive with your normal daily delivery of post.

Please note: Royal Mail do not deliver on Sundays or Bank Holidays - this should be taken into account when ordering. 

If you are not home to accept your delivery, a card should be left by the Royal Mail representative. This card will provide details of where you can collect the order or how to arrange re-delivery.

Should you be unable to collect your missed delivery or arrange for your medication to be redelivered by Royal Mail, the pharmacy can resend your medication to the same, or a different address provided it has been returned to us and this happens within a 30 day window.

Once a package has been shipped with Royal Mail we advise that you are bound to the terms and conditions of their use together with the terms and conditions contained herein.

You have the right to cancel your order up to the point when your treatment is dispatched. The pharmacist must destroy any medication within 30 days of it being returned, even un-opened boxes, so we are not able to offer refunds once your treatment has been dispatched.




  • Fully tracked delivery
  • SMS & email notifications
  • One-hour delivery window
  • Change delivery date directly with DPD
  • Update delivery location - add a Safeplace, preferred neighbour, or update your delivery location to a local collection point.

DPD Local is the most innovative parcel carrier around. Thanks to their industry-leading Predict service, they provide parcel recipients with a one hour delivery window, notified by email, so you don't have to wait in all day. What's more, it enables receivers to watch the progress of their delivery on a real-time map, all the way down to a final 15 minute time-slot. 

As well as keeping customers informed at every stage of the journey, DPD believe in maximising choice and convenience. That's why DPD provide access to a suite of options both on the day of delivery and the night before, allowing customers to take delivery of their goods in a way that suits. If you wish to reschedule, you can:

  • Select an alternative delivery date
  • Opt for delivery to a nominated neighbour
  • Have the parcel left in a specified safe place
  • Collect the parcel from your local DPD Pickup Shop
  • Upgrade delivery to By 12

Please note: DPD do not deliver on Saturdays, Sundays or Bank Holidays - this should be taken into account when ordering. 

Once a package has been shipped with DPD we advise that you are bound to the terms and conditions of their use together with the terms and conditions contained herein.

You have the right to cancel your order up to the point when your treatment is dispatched. The pharmacist must destroy any medication within 30 days of it being returned, even un-opened boxes, so we are not able to offer refunds once your treatment has been dispatched.


Forwarding houses

We are unable to ship orders to mailing or forwarding houses for onwards shipping to locations outside of the UK.


BFPO Postcodes

Unfortunately we are unable to deliver medicines to BFPO postcodes.


Remote Areas

Please be aware that Royal Mail Guaranteed services are not available to all customers in the UK, especially those that live in remote postcodes. Royal Mail advise customers of the following:

We deliver by 17:30 the next working day in the following postcode areas:
AB30 - 39, 41 - 45, 51 - 56
GY9 Alderney (Channel Islands)
HS1, 3 - 9
IV21 - 28, 40 - 49, 51 - 56
KA27, 28
KW1 - 3, 5 - 15
KW16 Stromness Town only
PA20 (0&9)
PA28 - 38, 41 - 49, 76, 77
PH15, 17 - 26, 31 - 40, 49, 50


We deliver within two working days by 17:30 to the following postcodes areas:
GY1 Herm (Channel Islands)
GY9 Sark (Channel Islands)
PA60 - 75, 78
ZE2, 3


We deliver within three working days by 17:30 to the following postcode areas:
KW16 - non-Town
PH30, 41 - 44


Please note: This applies to our 'Special Delivery' and 'Saturday Guaranteed' services.


International Orders

We are currently unable to ship orders outside of the UK.

We are unable to ship orders to mailing or forwarding houses for onwards shipping to locations outside of the UK.

Need to know more about Rosacea?

Visit our advice area or contact our support team

Finacea 15% Gel Reviews

Unsure about a treatment?
Ask our medical team for impartial information and advice about any treatment we provide or medical condition that we treat before you buy.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is Finacea gel used for?

    Finacea gel is used to treat mild or moderate rosacea of the facial area. It treats the red bumps, cystic pimples and pustules associated with papulopustular rosacea. It can also be used to treat milder cases of acne, especially where Skinoren cream has proved to be too strong.

  • How does Finacea gel work on the skin?

    Finacea gel works using an active ingredient known as azelaic acid. This ingredient works by reducing your body’s natural production and growth of keratin surface skin cells, which can block your pores. By reducing this production, the pore-blocking can also be reduced, allowing your sebaceous glands to get rid of sebum, decreasing the formation of papules, pustules and spots.

    Azelaic acid gel also works by killing the bacteria associated with acne that feed off your body’s sebum. The bacteria produce waste products and fatty acids that irritate the sebaceous glands, inflaming them and creating spots.

    Regular use of this topical treatment is important. Improvement only generally occurs after at least one month of treatment. Stop using the gel if your symptoms do not improve after a month (acne) or two months (rosacea). To obtain the best results, it is best to use Finacea gel over a period of several months.

  • Can I use Finacea gel with other medicines?

    There have been no reported effects when using Finacea gel in conjunction with other medications and it is ok to use alongside other oral treatments. If in doubt, check with your doctor or pharmacist before using other creams for rosacea or acne alongside it.

    It is recommended by the manufacturer to avoid using alcoholic cleansers, tinctures, astringents, abrasives and peeling agents alongside it.

  • Is it ok to use Finacea while pregnant or breastfeeding?

    If you are pregnant or breastfeeding, inform your doctor before you start using Finacea gel.

    Whether or not topical Finacea is safe for use during pregnancy is not known, but only low levels of it are actually absorbed through the skin. For this reason, it should only be used during pregnancy if your doctor thinks it necessary. 

    It is unlikely that Finacea will pose any risk to a breastfeeding infant if used by the mother. To be extra careful, do not apply this medication to the breasts before feeding in order to avoid direct contact with the child.

  • Can Finacea gel cause itching?

    Yes. In fact, it’s a common side effect of the gel, especially in the first few weeks of use. In most cases, the itchiness and redness will go down by itself. You can always reduce the frequency of application to every other day for the first few weeks as your skin gets used to the treatment. If you have an allergic reaction, cease using the gel and seek medical advice.

  • How much does Finacea gel cost?

    A 30g tube of Finacea gel costs £19.99, but you can save money by buying more than one tube at a time if you know you are going to need it for a long time.

  • Does Finacea clear acne scars?

    Finacea topical gel can be used to treat acne, as well as hyperpigmentation. It can also help to fade light surface scars, including dark marks.

  • What are Finacea reviews like?

    Generally, Finacea gets positive reviews from patients. It’s important to follow instructions carefully when it comes to applying Finacea.

Authored By:

A photo of Dr Donald Grant

Dr Donald Grant

MB ChB DRCOG MRCGP Dip.orth.med

Published on: 15-09-2016

Last modified on: 15-09-2018

Dr Don Grant is a GP with over 30 years experience and is the Clinical Advisor at The Independent Pharmacy

Reviewed By:

A photo of  Andy Boysan

Andy Boysan


Reviewed on: 15-09-2020

Next review date: 15-09-2022

Andy is a co-founder, the superintendent pharmacist and director at The Independent Pharmacy.

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