Unfortunately, wearing a mask when we are out has been made mandatory by the law in Singapore. In fact, it’s one of the most essential actions taken by the government to slow down the spread of the widespread worldwide pandemic right now.
For some of you, wearing a mask for long hours has caused you to have unwanted skin reactions. This unwanted skin reaction is known as mask acne, or ‘maskne’. It can show up as pimples, redness or irritation around your mouth, cheek, and jaw, where the mask gets in contact with your skin.
What exactly is ‘Maskne’?
Maskne occurs when sweat, oil and bacteria are trapped on the skin while wearing your mask. Face masks cause irritation by either physically rubbing against the skin, which can damage the skin’s protective barrier, or by trapping moisture, which causes acne. The technical term for maskne is “acne mechanica”. This kind of acne is different from other kinds of acne that pop up on your skin.
Ah, let’s talk about how the weather plays a part in this too. The warm, humid weather in Singapore can make mask acne especially cruel. The evil combination of sweat, oil, and moisture from breathing under the mask can easily clog pores. This doesn’t help if you hide in the cool air-conditioned environment the whole day. As air-conditioners generally dry out your skin, the mask rubbing against your drier-than-usual skin can cause hair follicles to break open, which then causes acne-causing bacteria to enter the follicles.
How to get rid of maskne
Whether or not you’re already suffering from maskne or simply finding ways to prevent it, we’ve got ways.
Wash your mask
If you’re someone who barely makes it back home to do your laundry or make dinner for yourself everyday, we suggest you go for a disposable face mask, and skip the cloth mask. If you do decide to go for a cloth mask, make sure you have interchangeable masks so you have ample time to wash and alternate between them. You don’t want to be wearing the same mask as yesterday because you’ll be basically re-applying all the sweat, dirt and oil back onto your face. You really don’t want that.
Cleanse & moisturise your face
When you’re breaking out, cleansing is necessary to remove impurities from the skin, but it’s important not to over-cleanse your face. Continue to wash your face with a gentle cleanser twice a day and use a trusty moisturiser.
For a good day and night hydrating product, we recommend PHYT’s Hydrating Fluid. Suitable for all skin types, the Hydrating Fluid is lightweight, yet has a high efficiency which guarantees long-lasting moisture all day long, preventing moisture loss from your skin. It reduces shine while keeping the skin hydrated and supple, making the skin feel soft and comfortable with 0 signs of dryness.
For deep cleansing and extraction, try our Anti-Imperfect Extraction Facial, which treats acne, blackheads, clogged pores and skin inflammation. Be pampered and trust our therapists as they specialise in this new extraction technique that will help clear your pores of dirt and oil build-up. Leaving your skin feeling healthier, brighter and fresher.
Make sure you’re using the right skincare products
We can’t emphasise this enough, although you might already know. To combat acne breakouts underneath your masks, you need to make sure that you relook in the ingredients of the products you’re using. Stay away from comedogenic products as these tend to clog pores, crushing your maskne free dream into pieces. We’ve put together some non-comedogenic products for your maskne concerns.
If you prefer a cream texture, PHYT’s Balancing and Purifying Cream combats 3 common concerns: shiny skin, open pores and dark spots. It helps reduce excess sebum production and hydrates the skin at the same time. The formula is rich in astringent oils to tighten pores, refine and smooth skin texture, leaving the skin clear and healthy.
A good serum for countering acne-prone skin is PHYT’s Balancing and Purifying Serum (Serum Purete). It contains highly concentrated active essential oils and works most effectively during the night when the skin is extremely receptive. It offers a triple effect – purifying effect, anti-imperfection effect, and anti-pore effect. With the serum’s balancing properties, it effectively restores the skin’s original clarity for healthy-looking skin.
For a more all-rounded product for blemishes, we recommend the Purifying Antiseptic Solution (Naturoderm). Naturoderm is a powerful and versatile natural antiseptic which stimulates and purifies the skin. It can be used for acne, blemishes and blackheads as well as many other skin problems – insect bites, cold sores, skin irritation, etc. Yes, you can also use this on other parts of your body if you’re wondering.
Skip your usual makeup, go light
Wearing too many products under the mask can cause a build up on the skin. Forego wearing foundation, or pick non-comedogenic products under the mask to allow your skin to breathe. This is especially true if you work out in your mask, or tend to sweat more.
Since face masks are becoming a regular staple of our daily wardrobe, it’s important to know how your skin reacts to masks differently. If you need advice, we are happy to provide you with a non-obligated, free one-to-one skin consultation session. Till next time.