Facemasks were once a treat for your complexion, but the facemasks of today are definitely something different and causing people great distress. Many of my patients at Boise Image have consulted me about what has become known as “maskne”. Masks are now a staple and wearing them for extended periods of time can come with side effects: rashes, inflammation, and breakouts. As if COVID hasn’t been stressful enough, now we have to worry about mask acne.
What’s Maskne and What’s Causing It?
Medically, it’s called acne mechanica, but simply put, maskne is acne that results from the rubbing and irritation of the mask on the face. A mask keeps your germs to yourself, but it also traps moisture, oil, and dirt, which in turn, clogs your pores and results in skin that is reminiscent of your teen years. I don’t think masks are disappearing anytime soon. So, what can you do to prevent and treat maskne? Here’s my take on the proper “PPE” for this troubling condition. (A little play on words.)
Prevention – Wash Your Face
Cleanse and cleanse some more. You should wash your face before you put your mask on and when you take it off. This reduces the amount of dirt and oil that gets trapped under your mask and finds its way into your pores. I recommend using a gentle cleanser with salicylic acid to avoid further irritation and to treat present acne. Face cleansing wipes are great to keep in your purse to wipe away sweat and grime while on the go.
Protection – Moisturize
Along with your natural oils, your skin needs added protection from the mask. Once your face is clean, skip the makeup. Foundation and other heavy products will only leave you more susceptible to clogged pores. Makeup will not only get on your mask, but it can become the culprit and trap the bacteria, pushing it deeper into your skin. Instead, opt for a tinted
moisturizer. A light moisturizer will add a protective layer between your skin and the mask while also fending off unwanted bacteria.
Entrust the Experts at Boise Image – Exfoliate
Maskne may now be a thing, but fortunately, a mask can cover it up, if only that had been an option in middle school. Along with cleansing and moisturizing your skin, chemical peels and facials can help breathe life back into it. Peels and facials exfoliate the skin and encourage new cell turnover. Pores are penetrated and cleaned out to produce healthy, smooth skin. At Boise Image, we offer a variety of skin care services to revive your skin’s health.
If you’re suffering from maskne, contact Boise Image and let us help. I know it’s a difficult time for all of us, but your skin’s health doesn’t have to suffer.
Call us today at (208) 375-1221 to book an appointment and find out how we can help you keep mask acne at bay.