Yeah, MASKNE - it’s a real thing and just as annoying as it sounds. I’m sure you understand the term - “acne and irritation caused by your facial mask.” As if 2020 hasn’t given us enough things to figure out.
I know for me, I can almost feel the pimples forming as my hot breath and the tight material asphyxiates my chin and cheeks. And once those pimples form, you know it because they are BIG and they HURT.
Needless to say, many clients have been reaching out asking what they can do to stop maskne. So if you’re feeling me, keep reading because I may have a couple of pointers to help you out.
Any mask is better than nothing when it comes to preventing the spread of COVID-19, but my suggestion if you’re experiencing breakouts and irritation is to try to wear one that is cotton. Cotton allows for better air flow and circulation, and it’s easy to clean.
Clean Your Mask!
Please, please, please wash your mask daily. This is so important for so many reasons. Not only will it clean the sweat and bacteria from the inside, but we’re trying to prevent the spread of a virus. Who knows what lingers on the outside of your mask, especially if you’re touching it non-stop to keep it from sliding off of your nose.
Just as important as it is to clean your masks, the same goes for your face ... but you should always be washing your face regardless of maskne or not. First, wash your hands, and then use a gentle cleanser. I love PCA Skin’s Creamy Cleanser because it thoroughly purifies the skin without irritation, and the ingredients are great! Amino acids, essential oils and aloe vera.
If you’re getting breakouts, but you're not experiencing any irritation or redness, then I recommend using something with benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid - but just as a spot treatment. These ingredients are very effective at treating acne, but they can also cause more sensitivity if you over use them. For a fast acting treatment try PCA Skin's Acne Gel. This salicylic treatment works to treat existing and future blemishes. It also has a blend of botanicals to control oil production.
If you’re getting a lot of irritation and redness then the brand Hale & Hush to the rescue! (As a side note, this product line was created specially with sensitive skin in mind. Everything they make is to heal damaged, health compromised, and sensitive skin.) Try Soothe Essence. This lightweight serum will reduce inflammation, calm redness, repairs damaged skin, and soothes & hydrates. Not only that, it contains hyaluronic acid, which will plump and soften the skin while helping with the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
Another product by Hale & Hush is the Relief Bio Powder. This is a completely unique product that comes in powder form and can be made into a paste and used as a mask, used dry, or can be mixed in with your other skincare products; oh, and it camouflages redness, as well.
For a moisturizer you want to stick with something light weight. The perfect moisturizer in this situation is PCA Skin's Clearskin. It absorbs quickly and doesn’t feel oily, balances moisture levels, and soothes sensitive skin. It contains niacinamide (vitamin b3), which is an amazing treatment for all skin types, but especially those that are experiencing redness and breakouts.
A Couple of Other Things:
I know I have drastically increased my sugar intake and other junk food that causes internal inflammation. For example, last weekend I ate a bunch of gluten-free dessert AND ice cream, and on Monday I woke up with the proof on my face (and the scale). As hard as it is, if you’re eating poorly, try hard to reel it in a little. I need to take my own advice here, seriously.
And lastly, we’ve all been stressed, clearly. Stress affects acne a couple of ways. It causes your body to make hormones like cortisol, which can cause you to produce more oil. And stress also causes an inflammatory response, which triggers and aggravates acne, along with other skin conditions like eczema. So, as much as you possibly can, try to reduce your stress levels. I have a good idea for you ... come into SkinQ for a facial! We’ll put you to sleep and help solve your skin problems. It’s a win-win!
Peace, love, and cheers to healthy skin!