While mask protects us from COVID-19 problem, some of us are uncovering a new problem – Maskne
Wearing a mask is now a new normal. While that protects us from COVID-19, some of us are uncovering a new problem – Maskne, or mask related acne. Maskne is a common side effect of wearing a mask and does not simply cause pimples. It may also result in redness, bumpiness, and irritation of the skin. This article will talk about preventive measures as well as treatment available.
Maskne is an umbrella term for several skin conditions that can be caused by wearing a face mask. It includes acne, allergic or sensitivity reaction of the skin to the mask, infection of hair follicles or flare of rosacea for people with that underlying condition.
What causes Maskne? In most cases, the enclosed environment promotes the accumulation of oil, bacteria and dead skin cells, causing clogged pores which leads to acne. Other causes include sensitivity to the material of the mask and friction from movement of the mask on the skin.
Knowing the above, how should Maskne be prevented?
1) Increase frequency of cleansing your face: That will help to remove accumulated oil, bacteria and dead skin cells.
2) Regular use of moisturizer: It creates a protective barrier against the mask, reducing the effect of sensitivity and friction. A non-comedogenic one is recommended so that your pores would not get blocked.
3) Consider using a cotton mask instead of a disposable one: A cotton mask is softer and gentler on the skin. If that is not possible, do not reuse disposable masks. Toss and use a new one after each use.
4) Remove your mask every 4 hours: The American Academy of Dermatology Association recommends removing your mask for 15 minutes every 4 hours. This will help give your skin a break. However, please do so only when physical distancing is possible.
Once Maskne occurs, how should it be treated? The same principal applies as with treatment of any acne. Topical products containing clindaymycin, benzyl peroxide and/or isotretinoin should be used to treat active acne papules. Products containing glycolic acid or other fruit acids can be used for a mild peeling effect to unclog blocked pores.
These products can be purchased at our clinic or various shopping platforms like Shopify, Shopee, Lazada and Amazon, to prevent and treat Maskne:
a) Healthsprings Oil Free Moisturizer is a non-comodogenic moisturizer that is suitable for daily usage.
b) Healthsprings Gentle Cleanser or Probiotic Cleanser are non-fragranced and non-alcoholic cleansers that will help remove excess oil, sweat and bacteria. They are suitable for acne prone skin.
c) Healthsprings Oily and Acne lotion can be used as a preventive product. It contains glycolic acid which gives a mild peeling effect, unclogging pores and reducing oiliness of the skin
d) Healthsprings Acne Gel or Acne Spot Gel will treat active acne papules. The former contains clindamycin whereas the latter contains benzyl peroxide and isotretinoin.
The above mentioned products are meant for the prevention and treatment of acne caused by mask wearing. If other conditions under the umbrella term of Maskne occur, antibiotics or steroid creams may be needed. Kindly consult our doctors if you are unsure about your condition.
Enjoy a complimentary video consultation with our aesthetician/therapist when you purchase our products online. If further medical treatment is needed, you will be referred to our doctors for a consultation.