Small Red Bumps around Eyes, Nose & Mouth that are Itchy

Small Red Bumps around Eyes, Nose & Mouth that are Itchy


Having red bumps around eyes, nose or mouth can be annoying and worrying. So what are some of the likely underlying causes for this problem? We sought to find out.

Little, Tiny or Small Red Bumps Around Eyes

There are several skin conditions that may cause small red bumps around the eyes including:

Keratosis pilaris

If you have a dry skin coupled with small goose bumps like red bumps, you may be suffering from a skin condition called keratosis pilaris. Although keratosis pilaris bumps improve with time, applying topical exfoliating creams with salicylic acid and retinoids may help. These are available over-the-counter in most drugstores (pharmacies).

Occular rosacea

A small red bump on the edge of the eyelid or on the eyelid itself is often an indication that you are suffering from an inflammatory eye disease known as occular rosacea. This may be accompanies by other symptoms such as red eyes, poor vision, and dry eyes.

It is very important to see a doctor if you experience any symptoms of occular rosacea as it tend to worsen with time If not treated appropriately.

Itchy Red Bumps around Eyes

Contact dermatitis is often to blame for itchy red bumps around the eyes. This is a skin disorder resulting from a reaction in the skin due to exposure to allergen and irritants such as chemicals, certain makeup products, some soap ingredients, adhesives used to stick fake eyelashes etc.

Contact dermatitis is almost always associated with itching of the skin.

Taking antihistamines usually help to relieve your symptoms. Applying a hydrocortisone cream can also help. Check with your local pharmacy.

In addition you will want to eliminate the allergen from your skin care routine or living environment.

Raised Small Red Bumps around Eyes – When to See a Doctor

“I have raised small red bumps around eyes. Should I book an appointment with my doctor or is there no cause for concern?” Jeremy

Although some cases of red bumps around eyes can be treated at home using simple self-care measures such as topical treatments and warm compresses, it is advisable to seek medical attention if the bumps are accompanied by swelling or pain. The same case applies to bumps that appear to be infected i.e. if they seem to have pus or to be growing bigger over time.

As for bumps that don’t seem to improve with home-care measures such as warm compresses or even seem to be worsening, you should also seek medical attention. Antibiotics and other medications may be required. In some cases, surgical procedure may as well be necessary. Your doctor will advise you accordingly.

Ocular Rosacea should also be treated by your doctor or any other qualified medical professional.

Red Bumps around Eyes, Nose and Mouth

Acne: For those with an oily skin, acne may be to blame for the bumps. This is a common skin condition that occurs when hair follicles – the tiny holes in the skin – become blocked.

According to the UK National Health Services website, this usually happens when the sebaceous glands produce too much sebum which then mixes with dead skin cells to form a plug in the hair follicle.

Although acne is more common among adolescents, starting at the age of 10-13 years, it as well affects about 20 percent of the adult population. Teenage acne goes away in 5-10 years, usually clearing away in early 20s but there are numerous treatments available including:

  • Topical application of benzoyl peroxide or tretinoin gel
  • Cleansing with antiseptic solution or keratolytic cleansers with salicylic acid
  •  Laser therapy
  • Tetracycline e.g. Doxycycline – administered for moderate acne
  • Oral antibiotics – usually prescribed for severe cases

Perioral dermatitis: Commonly affecting adult women, this is a common skin condition that is characterized by clusters of itchy, tender red bumps around the mouth. The bumps occur on the side of chins and then spread to include upper lip and cheeks as the website points out.

In some cases the disorder spreads to other areas of the skin including around the eyes and on the eyelids, around the nose, and in the genital and anal areas. The condition is then described as periorificial dermatitis.

Although the exact cause of perioral dermatitis and its variants is not well understood, it is thought to be triggered by activation of innate immune system by factors such as poor facial hygiene, use of certain facial creams and makeup especially the petrolatum and paraffin based varieties.

Use of topical steroids, use of fluorinated toothpastes, and hormonal changes associated with the use of oral contraceptives may also be to blame.


  • Stop using any facial cream or topical steroid
  • Wash the face regularly with warm water only until the rah has cleared, then start using a non-soap bar to a liquid cleanser until you have fully recovered
  • Topical erythromycin
  • Topical application of pimecrolimus cream, metronidazole gel, or azelaic acid
  • Oral antibiotics- prescribed for more severe cases
  • Oral isotretinoin – reserved for the most persistent of conditions

Red Bumps Under Eyes Allergies

Just yesterday one of our readers wrote to us asking, “I have developed red bumps around eyes after using an adhesive to stick fake eyelashes. The bumps itch like hell. What can I do to relieve them?”

This reader didn’t leave her name and instead chose to use the pen name “Concerned mom”.

Nevertheless, she seems to be dealing with a case of contact dermatitis. The chemicals used in various beauty and skin care products including makeup, soaps, adhesives (for fake eye lashes) can cause allergic reactions leading to formation of itchy red bumps.

Your best bet is to get rid of the irritant or allergen (in this case the adhesive) and take some non-prescription oral antihistamines such as Benadryl. If that doesn’t help, book an appointment with your doctor or dermatologist.

Red Bumps around Eyes of Baby

What if you wake up one day and find that your baby has red bumps around the eyes? Well, that could be the result of allergic reaction to an allergen or certain medicines. If you just introduced your little one to some food, say dairy products for example, to her diet it may be to blame.

They could as well be the result of clogged pores. Try using warm compresses (patting the skin with a washcloth dampened with warm water.

If that doesn’t help or the bumps seem to be getting bigger, seek the attention of your pediatrician for proper diagnosis and treatment. You should also call your pediatrician right away if the bumps seem to bother your baby.