One of the first realities of post-lockdown, ‘new normal’ life is getting used to wearing a face mask, especially when it’s soon to be compulsory anywhere indoors. While, of course, wearing a cloth mask inside the shops or hairdressers is nowhere as uncomfortable or irritating as the PPE our amazing frontline workers have to wear, you may find that your skin has started to break out more than usual. Here’s how to combat that face mask induced ‘maskne’…
What Is Maskne?
As the name suggests, ‘maskne’ is acne brought on by wearing a face mask. The clinical term for this is acne mechanica and it is caused by the rubbing and friction of the skin by outside forces as this can push bacteria and dirt into the skin, creating micro-tears which makes it easier for impurities to penetrate. You’ll most likely notice mask-induced breakouts on the bridge of the nose, cheeks and chin and they may take the form of whiteheads, blackheads or even cysts.
How To Treat Maskne:
Keep The Skin Clean
When it comes to the skincare you use under your mask, we recommend keeping your skin clean and hydrated. It’s important to choose products that are going to care for your skin and strengthen its natural barrier. Ensure you’re cleansing in the morning and evening with a product like Murad’s Prebiotic 4-in-1 MultiCleanser. This gel-to-oil cleanser effortlessly breaks down make-up, excess oil and impurities while providing the skin with essential hydration thanks to an ultra-cleansing Peptide. Added Prebiotic Powder nourishes the good bacteria living on the skin’s surface while skin-loving Hyaluronic Acid hydrates.
Soothe and Hydrate
If you’re noticing dryness as well as breakouts in the mask area, opt for a lightweight moisturiser that tackles breakouts and relieves dehydration. Dermalogica’s Clear Start Skin Soothing Hydrating Lotion easily absorbs into the skin and brings swift comfort due to key ingredients Squalene and Hyaluronic Acid which nourish and soften. Botanical extracts of Orange, Grapefruit and Ginger soothe and calm inflammation caused by angry breakouts to leave the skin looking and feeling more balanced.
Use An Exfoliator
One of the key ways to prevent mask breakouts is to use a decongesting exfoliant such as the Paula’s Choice Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid. This fast-absorbing solution effortlessly removes dead cells from the surface and from deep within the pores, plus it contains Salicylic Acid which gets to work on blackheads and pimples while reducing signs of inflammation.
Ditch The Full-Coverage
If you’re one for wearing a full-coverage foundation everyday, we’d recommend making some changes if you’re experiencing ‘maskne’ as heavy products will only trap bacteria into the pores under your mask. Instead, opt for a tinted moisturiser or sunscreen like BABOR’s Essential Care BB Cream which is an ultra-lightweight moisturiser that contains mineral UV filters and sheer pigments to add a natural skin perfecting tint.
Use A Targeted Treatment
You can combine two steps into one with the SKINCITY skincare Balancing Sulfur Mask, which can be used all over the face to decongest or directly onto pesky breakouts to calm and soothe. This concentrated formula contains Kaolin Clay and Sulphur which absorb excess sebum at the surface while removing pore-blocking congestion and reducing breakout-induced inflammation.