The Ultimate Maskne Guide: What It is and How to Treat It

The COVID-19 pandemic has taken the world by storm, and has interrupted the normality of our day-to-day lives. Social distancing, public events being banned, border closures, businesses closing, holidays spent away from loved ones – the list goes on! Lets take a minute to honor and give thanks to our frontline healthcare workers who have put so much at risk for the health and well-being of our communities. Each one of you is a true hero and we cant thank you enough! 

But of all the restrictions that have come into effect, none affects the skin more than public mask mandates. Now, lets be clear – we are not complaining! Masks have definitely helped keep people safe during these difficult times and we encourage their use until it is safe not to use them. However, for most of us, our skin isnt so happy about these masks, and for good reason! 

For those of us who have to wear masks all day at work or school, many of us have noticed a sudden breakout on what was once beautiful, clear skin. Its especially irritating when you work so hard to try to keep your skin clear and in check, and then boom – fresh pimples popping up every day. This sudden breaking out caused by masks is what we like to refer as, Maskne. 

What is Maskne?

Maskne is a skin concern that involves breaking out because of wearing a mask for an extended period of time. Wearing a mask very often leads to breakouts around the lowers area of our faces. As if acne wasnt bad enough from sources like hormones, stress and genetics, now we need to put up with it because of a mask! Eye roll.  

But why exactly do masks make us so much more prone to breaking out? Well, simply put, the mask creates a natural protected area of warm air for bacteria on our skin to thrive. Mix that in with dead skin cells and surface oils, and the result is a breakout of pimples on your skin. Even the best of us who work so hard on maintaining clear skin can experience major set backs because of this. 

If not maintained well, your skin can worsen over time. For those of you who are especially prone to acne, you need to be even more careful. Maskne can cause quite a bit of disappointment for those who have suffered from acne and worked so hard to clear their skin. Even for those of you who have never suffered from acne, wearing a mask for extended periods of time creates the perfect breeding ground for bacteria to thrive in warm moisture, and for dead skin cells and oil to start clogging your pores. 

How Do I Prevent Maskne in the First Place?

We can all agree that Maskne isnt going anywhere, at least not anytime soon. The best thing you can do is prevent any breakouts from happening in the first place. Here are some tips and tricks the experts at Lucere recommend while wearing a mask, to manage breakouts from starting. 

IN-CLINIC TREATMENTS  

Its important to keep your skin clean, hydrated and healthy during these times. At Lucere, we offer amazing skin treatments to help exfoliate and hydrate your skin. We offer the Lucere Isolaz Deep Pore Acne treatment, as well as different Chemical Peels to help with clearing Maskne.  

Our Lucere HydraFacial and Bela MD Microdermabrasion are also fantastic options for helping you clear clogged pores, deeply cleanse and exfoliate your skin, as well as keep you looking fresh, glowing and radiant! 

MEDICAL-GRADE SKINCARE 

Its important to keep your skincare routine on point every day! You should be using premium, medical-grade skincare, like the products we offer at Lucere. Cleansing twice a day, exfoliating every morning, and toning twice a day are important steps for keep your skin healthy, clean and protected.  

The products you use after these steps will also help you achieve radiant, clear skin. Be sure to include a good moisturizer and SPF. Always wash your hands well before touching your face and applying any skincare products. This is a necessary step that many people forget. 

One of our favorite kits is the Lucere No PeelPeel Kit, which is a custom, expertly curated collection of ZO Skin Health products. These products work together to exfoliate, hydrate and brighten your skin. This kit is amazing for managing Maskne. We also offer many acne kits, such as the ZO Complexion Clearing Program, the Vivier Acne Treatment System, and the AlumierMD Clarifying Collection. You can check out these kits here. 

WEAR DISPOSABLE MASKS 

Even though many people enjoy wearing fabric masks to match their outfits, or just because they look more aesthetically pleasing, disposable masks are much better for your skin! They are much more ventilated than fabric masks are, so they do not trap in as much moisture and warmth (the perfect breeding ground for bacteria).  

The other benefit is that you can throw them out daily, along with any of the bacteria and dirt that your mask has accumulated. Masks retain a lot of dirt and debris, especially from laying them down on surfaces or touching them with your dirty hands. 

KEEP FABRIC MASKS CLEAN 

Many people prefer to wear a fabric mask. We get it! Theyre more trendy and more fun than the alternative option. Just remember, this option will trap in more warmth and moisture, having very limited ventilation. This is because materials and fabrics making up these masks are thicker. This will create the perfect environment for bacteria to grow and multiply much more quickly. 

If youre still adamant on wearing your favorite fabric mask, try some of these tips to minimize Maskne breakouts. When you are wearing you mask, try to find moments where you pull it down for a breather – if youre able to find alone time. Even if its just for a few minutes. This helps increase airflow and dry off your mask from the inside to get rid of added moisture. It also gives your skin a chance to breath.  

Washing your fabric mask daily is very important! You want to be sure you are using hot water and a good detergent that wont irritate your skin or contain ingredients that promote clogging of the skin. We do not recommend you keep wearing your mask day in and day out without washing. A lot of bacteria, dead skin cells, debris and oil will continue to be on your mask the next day you put it on. Also, dont forget that you touch your mask several times a day without realizing it, and your fingers can be dirty. Try to wash before handling your mask. 

KEEP UP THE MAINTENANCE 

Be sure to keep maintaining your skin well throughout the day, especially if you work in an environment where your mask needs to be on all day. We highly recommend taking the ZO Complexion Renewal Pads, or some other type of toner with salicylic acid in it, to work with you, especially if you are acne or breakout-prone. During your lunch break, be sure to wash your hands thoroughly and clean off any bacteria, debris, oil or dead skin off your face with these toning pads. 

Top 5 Maskne Questions to Ask Yourself

Theres nothing fun about having an acne breakout, but the reality is, it can happen at times. Remember to be patient, and follow the above steps to prevent Maskne from occurring, and if it has, continue using the advice above to help get it back in check. 

If you do keep breaking out, ask yourself the following questions: 

  1. Am I using good quality, medical-grade skincare to keep my skin exfoliated, healthy and clean? Am I committing to my skincare routine twice a day? If the answer is no, you must set yourself up with amazing products and commit to them daily. If you dont know where to start, we invite you to contact the Skin Experts at Lucere, so that we can help set you up with an amazing skincare routine for your unique skin type and goals.[Text Wrapping Break] 
  1. Am I using a disposable face mask? Do I change it out every day? You must remember to avoid touching your mask with dirty hands and to dispose of it daily![Text Wrapping Break] 
  1. Do I wear a fabric face mask? If yes, consider switching to disposable face masks if you notice yourself breaking out still. [Text Wrapping Break] 
  1. Do I wash and sanitize my hands throughout the day? You should be – we are living in COVID times after all! But its important even for the health of your skin. Avoid touching your face at all costs, and try to refrain from touching your mask with dirty hands.[Text Wrapping Break] 
  1. Am I wearing my face mask for too long? If yes, find alone time when you can take a breather. Also consider using a toner with salicylic acid to clean your face during your breaks.
The Big Takeaway

Maskne isnt fun, but by following the above steps, you will be able to manage your breakouts and keep your skin healthy and glowing. If you suffer from Maskne, we invite you to contact us for a complimentary consultation, where our Skin Experts can help you get on track! 

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