How to Reduce Facial Sweating

Updated February 21, 2017

Excessive sweating, or hyperhidrosis, often occurs in stressful situations. Sweating is simply a way for your body to reduce its internal temperature. When temperatures rise the sweat glads kick in and produce even more sweat. While some facial sweating is normal, excessive sweating on the face can be uncomfortable and embarrassing.

Control obvious culprits. Eliminate spicy foods and try not to exercise outside in excessively hot or humid conditions. Humid temperatures raise body heat because the air is already saturated, which means the sweat can't evaporate off your body. Remember to hydrate during and after exercise. Keep your anger and emotions in control and breathe deeply in difficult situations. Drink less coffee, as caffeine stimulates the nervous system and activates sweat glands, and cut down on smoking because nicotine causes your body to release acetylcholine, which stimulates the sweat glands.

Apply a loose rice powder, available at Asian groceries, to your entire face with a large make-up brush.

Visit a dermatologist and discuss a topical antiperspirant, such as Drysol or Maxim, that contains aluminium chloride hexahydrate. Apply the antiperspirant to dry skin at night only because it needs six to eight hours to work. Roll the applicator onto your hands and apply the solution to your face.

Ask your doctor about Botox injections. "Botox injections work well on the head and face," says Dr. David Pariser, chairman of the International Hyperhidrosis Society's board of directors. "But the injection technique requires skill, so patients should seek an experienced practitioner. A potential side effect of Botox injections in the face as a treatment for sweating is asymmetry, particularly of the forehead." This can happen if some of the Botox diffuses into the facial muscles, but can be fixed with more Botox.

Research oral anticholinergics. Ask your doctor about a prescription for one of these systemic medications used to treat facial and head sweating. These are a temporary solution used to prevent discomfort or embarrassment for a brief time, such as during a speaking engagement or dramatic performance.

Explore surgical treatments for excessive sweating when noninvasive treatments fail. Endoscopic thoracic sympathectomy (ETS) is performed with local anaesthesia. A part of the nerve system called the sympathetic nerve is either removed or cramped, which disrupts the neural signals that lead to excessive sweating. This treatment is known to be highly successful, but may cause several side effects. Consider this treatment only if nothing else has worked.


Talk to your doctor about the side effects associated with topical antiperspirants. Oral medications are intended for short-term use and side effects include dry mouth, blurry vision and constipation.

Things You'll Need

  • Rice powder
  • Make-up brush
  • Board-certified dermatologist
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About the Author

Based in Los Angeles, Lisa Finn has been writing professionally for 20 years. Her print and online articles appear in magazines and websites such as "Spa Magazine," "L.A. Parent," "Business," the Famous Footwear blog and many others. She also ghostwrites for mompreneurs and business owners who appear regularly on shows such as Ricki Lake, HGTV, Carson Daly and The Today Show.