As more places begin to open up, and wearing masks becomes routine, your skin may develop “maskne,” a term used to describe acne in the area a mask is worn.
Maskne is a play on the “derm-urban dictionary” term “backne” (back acne), newly coined for our novel COVID-19 face mask era.
Maskne is one of the 2020s most widespread skincare problems.
What causes MASKNE?
Acne Mechanica is the real cause behind the formation of breakouts in the facial area covered by a mask. Physical manipulation and pressure of a mask on the skin trigger acne. Maskne is the result of friction against the skin caused by the prolonged use of any protective face masks. It is also the result of the moist, humid environment caused by your nose and mouth being covered for a prolonged period of time. Hot, moist, sweaty — the discomfort of all this combined gives the perfect breeding grounds for bacteria, increased sebum (oil) production and clogged pores.
Ways to deal with Maskne:
- Wash your mask regularly (if it’s reusable). You should be wearing a clean mask every day.
- Make sure to cleanse your face regularly. Wash your face before and after wearing a face mask. To prevent over-cleansing, stick to a morning and before-bed routine, incorporating soothing cleansers and occasionally a cleanser that contains salicylic acid.
- Moisturize, soothe, heal, and hydrate your skin with oil-free products, such as products containing hyaluronic acid and Vitamin C.
- Consider skipping foundations and concealers while wearing a face mask. Their heavy formulations, combined with the enhanced humidity under the mask, could affect your skin’s sebum production and potentially lead to an increase in clogged pores and breakouts.
- If you’ve already experienced a bit of irritation or redness from mask-to-skin friction, it’s crucial to start spot treatments immediately. Cleanse your face with a gentle cleanser and use a product designed for leave-on spot treatment overnight. Use an oxygenating product on top.