Written by Kaelyn Spickler
Now that we are well into 2021, the distribution of the vaccine provides a light at the end of the tunnel of the coronavirus, but whether you are vaxxed up or not, masks are projected to stick around for a while. That means it’s time to finally figure out how to get pesky maskne under control.
The root of maskne is several different things. The mask rubbing against our skin or creating pressure on the skin can cause inflammation. Additionally, the oils, sweat, and/or makeup that gets built-up to create bacteria could be a cause for acne around the chin, cheeks, mouth, and nose.
There are a few basic fundamentals that everyone can do no matter your skin type or budget. For starters, wash your mask after every use if you wear it for more than a couple of hours a day. This gets rid of any bacteria that may have built up on your mask. Similarly, wash your face after wearing a mask because this helps cleanse your face of any bacteria that built up or clogged your pores.
Moisturizer is important for both preventing and helping the acne there. It helps prevent maskne by acting as a barrier between your skin and the mask when put on before the mask. It helps heal acne by keeping the skin hydrated.
Some important ingredients to look for in a moisturizer or other skin care product are niacinamide, ceramides, hyaluronic acid, peptides, and free fatty acids. These ingredients are beneficial because they help strengthen the skin barrier. Ingredients to avoid are perfume, alcohol, coconut oil, sodium lauryl sulfate, and lanolin.
The type of mask you are wearing can also play a part in maintaining healthy skin. Masks that irritate the skin are often causing friction or are too tight, so pick one that fits you well and look for materials like silk, satin, cotton, or stretch-foam.
Try to avoid wearing makeup under your mask, and if you feel like you’ve had a mask on for an extra long time, double wash your face before bed. If none of these tips help, consider placing foam or medical tape where the base of your mask is, or you could find a face mask meant to be worn under your mask.
As annoying as it is, we are fighting the same battle, and at least your mask covers it up whenever you’re out in public!