I started getting blemishes ever since I decided to take short afternoon walks, and it all occurs in the same area where my mask has been. While appearance is the least of our worries in the midst of this pandemic (they get covered up anyway), it can be painful and irritating.
What is Maskne?
According to healthline.com, “Maskne” is a condition where a person develops breakouts from wearing a mask. Other than pimples, Maskne may also include redness, bumpiness, and other forms of skin irritation.
What Causes It?
- Clogged pores. Oil, bacteria, and dead skin cells are present on our skin, which can further build up whenever we wear masks.
- Trapped humidity. Wearing masks can trigger pimples (especially for those with existing acne conditions) thanks to trapped humidity from our breath and sweat.
- Allergic reaction. Some may be allergic to the material used in the face mask, thereby creating a skin reaction.
- Friction. Since the mask can rub against our skin, it may lead to chafing or irritation.
How to Manage It
I’m not pretending to be an expert here, but let me share a few things I do to prevent and manage Maskne:
1. Make sure your masks are thoroughly cleaned.
For reusable cloth masks, it’s best to wash them separately. If you have sensitive skin, opt for hypoallergenic detergents and dry them under the sun.
For disposable masks, have a clean and frequently sanitized storage for them. Keep them in a closed container and make it a habit to wash your hands first before getting one.
2. Opt for a soft, breathable mask.
Your best option in reusable masks is one made with good quality cloth: breathable and smooth. Rethink cheap ones because it would also mean that the materials used won’t do your skin any favor.
Where to get it:
3. Sterilize your mask.
It won’t hurt to do an extra measure for this. We use our UV Care pocket sterilizer to zap possible bacteria on the masks before wearing them.
Where to get it:
4. Wash your face frequently.
It’s like puberty all over again! I wash my face soon as I get home. It’s our house rule to take a bath whenever we go out (even for quick errands) so it’s inevitable anyway.
5. Use an acne gel.
Human Heart Nature’s Acne Defense Gel has been so helpful in quickly drying up pimples. I spot-treat the blemishes at least twice a day after cleaning my face.
Where to get it:
6. Make an anti-bacterial serum.
My oilbularyo (oiler) husband concocted a night serum for me to assist in the repair. He made one with Jojoba oil, Frankincense, Lavender, and Tea Tree essential oil. This trio helps soothe irritation, promote healthy-looking skin, and reduce the appearance of blemishes.
Where to get Jojoba oil:
7. Use LumiSpa.
This home-spa device has been our best bet when it comes to skincare. It gently removes gunk, tightens pores, and aids skin renewal. It’s been a year since we regularly used it and there’s no turning back for us. If ever you’re on the fence about getting one for yourself, click here for our full review and how to get one.
If you have been getting breakouts, I hope some of these tips can help relieve the irritation. Please note that these product recommendations are based on my experience and may differ from others. If you have certain skin conditions, consult your dermatologist first.