If your face mask has been causing you to break out, then you’ve come to the right page. Now that many countries have mandated the use of masks, wearing them while we’re out has been essential to curb the spread of Covid-19. However, there is a problem: whether we’re wearing our own DIY masks or even ones we’ve bought online, many of us have faced the brunt of mask-induced acne, or as we like to call it, “maskne”.
Why does that happen? Wearing a face mask for long hours can create a moist and humid environment for your skin — which may lead to the buildup of oil and dirt, eventually resulting in rashes, inflammation and breakouts. So how else can you keep maskne at bay? Ahead, we’ve listed out 5 important tips for you to take note of to avoid breaking out the next time you’re wearing your mask — ones you can easily incorporate into your current skincare regime.
1. Switch out your cloth masks or use single-use face masks
The thought of tossing out your mask even when it looks clean after a whole day out may seem like a total waste, but bacteria can remain on the mask even after you take it off. It’s also advisable to opt for a single-use face mask so that you don’t re-introduce the bacteria to your skin. Otherwise, if you’re using a cloth mask, it’s also important for you to wash them or switch it out after each use to avoid any breakouts in the future.
2. On makeup: go for lightweight formulas, and remove makeup properly after using a mask
We love wearing makeup and as much as we’d like to look glam for the ‘Gram, we’ve realised more lightweight formulations work better for our skin this season, especially since the oil, dirt and makeup trapped under our masks is a disaster waiting to happen. Lightweight foundations, for instance, or those with skincare properties, tend to allow our skin to “breathe”, while still providing the coverage we need. Heavy makeup can easily clog our pores when not properly removed, so having it constantly in that environment isn’t going to be great for your skin. Another tip would be to remove makeup thoroughly once you get home — the no-rinse formulas of micellar water makes this essential step less of a hassle.
3. Use an exfoliating facial essence
Mask-induced acne is caused by oil, dirt and other impurities, so it’s important to treat your skin right by removing any residue or leftover makeup with products that are gentle and exfoliating to the skin. Your skin will feel more fresh too. Other than a weekly scrub, consider skincare products that you can use daily, such as an exfoliating facial essence. The L’Oreal Paris Revitalift Crystal Micro-Essence comes to mind, as it works to counter maskne by:
— Controlling excess sebum production
— Brightening and smoothening skin
— Refining skin texture
— Refining and minimising the appearance of pores
— Increasing skin’s moisture
We did a proper review of the Revitalift Crystal Micro-Essence just last month, and experienced these benefits firsthand; the essence kept our skin to clean and moisturised without over-exfoliating it. Many times, people assume that drying out their acne or exfoliating the area will banish spots, however, doing so may actually lead to more breakouts. The great thing about this essence is that it’s also formulated with a high-end delivery system that houses LHA, a derivative of salicylic acid. Similar to salicylic acid, the LHA helps to lift dead skin cells off the surface of the skin — making your pores less likely to become clogged and form new spots.
4. Restore your skin’s balance with a sheet mask
Keeping your nose and mouth covered for a prolonged period of time may cause rashes, chafing and breakouts over time. Most would think that the area would be moist enough from having it covered all day — but that’s where they’re wrong. Besides keeping your face hydrated and moisturised by slathering generous amounts of moisturiser every night, you can also opt for a sheet mask to pamper your skin with.
A noteworthy option would have to be the L’Oreal Revitalift Crystal Micro-Essence Treatment Mask. Bringing life back to your skin, this sheet mask deeply hydrates your skin in no longer than 15 minutes. Beyond bumping up your skin’s hydration levels, it’s also able to control sebum production so you get the perfect water-oil ratio for balanced skin. Other unique properties include its pore-minimising benefits, and how it helps accelerate skin renewal for smoother, brighter skin respectively. If you’ve been noticing duller skin lately due to mask-wearing, this all-rounder mask will definitely help you achieve a glowing complexion.
I personally tried it, and found that it helped to restore moisture to my skin. The sheet mask holds a lot of essence — apparently, 30 times more than a normal sheet mask — so it did felt like my skin was pampered without the sheet mask drying up too fast. I could tell that my skin was a little more radiant after too!
5. Wash your face before and after wearing your mask
Many fail to realise one of the key steps to maskne prevention also includes washing your face before and after wearing your mask. Reason being: this helps to remove excess oil and dead cells from the skin which will prevent any potential flareups from happening and keeps clogged pores at bay. Always opt for a gentle cleanser that doesn’t strip the skin or leave it squeaky clean, while we’d also recommend hydrating micellar waters that calm and soothe the skin too.
The L’OREAL PARIS REVITALIFT CRYSTAL MICRO-ESSENCE ($35.90; 130ml and $22.90; 65ml) is now available at watsons, GUARDIAN, SHOPEE and LAZADA.
The L’Oreal Revitalift Crystal Micro-Essence Treatment Mask ($4.90; 1-piece) is now available at WATSONS and GUARDIAN.