In midst of everything that’s happening in 2023, wearing a face mask has become an everyday thing for all of us. If you’re going out in public, for example, to a restaurant or a nearby corner store, you have to cover your face with a mask. That has unfortunately lead to some skin problems. As if 2023 couldn’t have gotten any worse – people started developing mask induced acne or maskne. Luckily, we’ve been dealing with skin problems even before the global pandemic, so don’t worry – there’s a way to make your skin shiny and clean once again. If you want to know how to deal with maskne, stay with us, we’ve got a few skincare tips for you.
1. Wash Your Face
The first thing you should do is wash your face with lukewarm water and gentle soap. This should go without saying, as many parents, especially those with newborn babies, tell their kiddos to wash their faces and hands every time they get dirty. As to when you should do it, well, once in the morning and before you go to bed is the standard routine, although we would recommend washing it after wearing a mask for a couple of hours and after sweating. Avoid using harsh soap or rubbing your face with a towel after you finish. Gently rubbing your skin with a clean towel should do the trick.
2. Use A Cleanser
Just like soap, a gentle cleanser will help you get rid of extra oil, sweat, bacteria or any other dirt. One to keep in mind when buying a cleanser is to pick one without any alcohol or perfume as that could irritate your skin additionally and make your skin problem even worse instead of better. For a more severe case of maskne – use a medicated cleanser with salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide. However, you shouldn’t purchase medicated products without consulting with your doctor or dermatologist first.
Keeping your skin hydrated is crucial to its health. After washing or cleansing your face, apply a moisturizing cream to keep your skin hydrated. Once again, you should avoid heavy products and only use those that are fragrance and oil-free. A heavy moisturizer can easily clog your pores and lead to breakouts.
4. No Makeup
If you’ve always wanted ease off the makeup – now’s the chance. Beauty products aren’t particularly good for your skin. All of them cover your skin not allowing it to breathe. They clog your pores and that can easily lead to breakouts. Pair that up with wearing face masks – you got yourself a full-blown case of maskne. Also, although not skin-related, makeup can affect how effective the mask itself is, so that’s another thing to think about.
5. Wear Only Clean Masks
This goes without saying, for various reasons, but you can’t wear a ‘dirty’ mask. You may not see that it’s dirty, but skin cells and the rest of the skin residue will stick to it. Reusable ones are made to be washed – so wash them. Don’t wear them for several days straight without cleaning them. Use a hypoallergenic detergent to wash the mask and always have them dry out completely.
6. Use Antibiotic Cream
Considering how easy it is for bacteria to build up under a face mask it’s no wonder maskne has become such a widespread issue. On that note, one of the best tips on how to prevent maskne we’ve gotten is to use topical antibiotic cream or gel before you put the mask on. This should work as the first line of defence against bacterial build-up. Once again, we’d advise consulting with your doctor or a dermatologist before using any medicated products.
7. Don’t Re-Use Disposable Masks
We don’t need to go into great detail as to why you should wear them more than once. They’re called disposable for a reason. Throw them away after use and get a new one.
8. Give Your Skin A Break
If you are in a position to do so, meaning you are at a safe distance from another person or in a place where a mask isn’t obligatory, AADA recommends that you remove your mask every 4 hours for about 15 minutes to give your skin a well-deserved break. Keep that in mind, especially if you’re at work and you wear yours for 8 hours straight.
Arguably your face’s best friend is exfoliation. By exfoliating regularly, you remove those stubborn, excess skin cells that tend to linger on your face and clog your pores causing breakouts and all sorts of other problems. How often you should exfoliate is arguable, but the general rule of thumb is once or twice a week for chemical exfoliates and three or four times for scrubs and brushes. Avoid over-exfoliating as you can do more damage that way.
Believe it or not, but lack of sleep can cause some major skin problems. Sleep is extremely important for the proper functioning of our whole body. By not sleeping, we become more vulnerable to all sorts of problems. You wouldn’t want to add more salt to the wound by making your face extra sensitive now that it’s under more duress than usual.
11. Don’t Squeeze Your Blackheads and Zits
We get it, it’s hard not to pop that annoying zit on your chin, but you have to resist the temptation. Not only can you scar yourself permanently, but you’ll expose already inflamed pore to additional bacteria from your fingers.
12. Find The Mask That Fits
Finally, you may have not known this, but the fit of the facemask can affect whether your face acts up or not. First of all, you have to find the one that fits just right, not too loose or too tight. You want it to provide protection, but you want to avoid unnecessary friction. Next up, choose the one with at least two layers for fabric. Finally, avoid synthetic fabrics like nylon. Instead, choose natural, soft fabrics like cotton.
As you can see, there are a lot of steps you have to take to prevent or deal with maskne. We can only hope these tips will help you. However, if they don’t, we’d recommend seeking professional help.