Maskne: The New Skin Issue
By Haalah Omer
The world is still grappling with COVID-19 and the new normal that it has brought with itself. One such practice is strict diligence in wearing face masks, the upside of which is keeping you safe. However wearing masks for long periods of time can lead to breakouts in the nose, mouth, and chin area known as ‘Maskne’.
If you have fallen prey to it, then help is here. Read our top tips for dealing with maskne.
Change your face mask regularly
When you breathe or talk your mask tends to trap in a lot of hot air. Besides being annoying, this air creates a warm, humid environment and an ideal setting for yeast/ bacteria.
With the humid monsoon weather of Pakistan in summer, a build-up of sweat beneath the lining of a mask can lead to moisture and irritation through rubbing. Replacing your mask after regular intervals can help the skin breathe.
Choose a fabric mask that fits
Avoid wearing a mask which is too tight since that can lead to skin friction and irritation, and potentially damage the surface to create a haven for bacteria.
Wash mask regularly.
Fabric masks should be washed regularly for hygiene and to avoid bacteria buildup. The CDC recommends washing reusable masks after each use with a mild unscented soap or detergent.
Treatment & Prevention:
When it comes to treating maskne, dermatologists say to look for gentle products that target acne without further irritating your skin. Cleanse skin thoroughly at the end of the day to remove any residue.
The famed Dr. Pimple Popper shared a viral hack for maskne by suggesting spaying the inside of your mask with a salicylic-acid based product, as the ingredient cleans out the oil and debris from the pores.
Anna Chien, M.D. dermatologist in the Johns Hopkins Department of Dermatology shares a very unique hack by suggesting to use *Diaper Cream* (yes you’ve read it right) since it has similar symptoms to maskne: irritated, raw, sore skin due to a warm, wet environment.”