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So what is Maskne? 

It's an unwanted skin reaction such as redness and breakouts around the area in which your mask comes into contact. 

Why does this happen?

The mask traps dirt, oil, perspiration and bacteria underneath causing blocked pores, spots and redness and the friction of the mask against the skin can cause inflammation. When the skin becomes inflamed it can trigger the production of additional skin cells that can then cause a build up leading to blocked pores, breakouts, uneven skin texture and flaking.

 As it looks like mask wearing is going to be around for a little longer here's my 5 top tips for keeping your skin looking good and preventing further skin issues:

  • Cleansing! Yep, whether you are male or female it is so important that you cleanse your skin in the evening. Using a cleansing cream, balm or wash to remove debris and bacteria that have been trapped between your skin and the mask. Using a gentle cleanser will be more beneficial, the pH balance of the skin needs to be maintained, by over stripping the skin of it's natural oils it could worsen the issue.
  • Check what your mask is made of, sounds simple but whether it's a disposable or washable mask check what it's made of to ensure your skin isn't reacting to any materials. If using a washable mask try washing your mask in non bio washing products and add anti bacterial laundry cleanser to your wash (check manufacturers instructions for use) this ensures any inflammation causing bacteria has been removed before your next wear and the chemicals in the non bio are less of an irritant to the sensitive skin on the face.
  • Exfoliate. With the additional build up of cells due to the skin trying to protect itself from an external irritant you'll need to gently buff away the excess dead skin cells and oil that can cause blocked pores. The key here is to use a gentle product that isn't too abrasive; especially if you are experiencing redness and sensitivity. I would recommend Pinks Boutique Rose face and body scrub. The gentle jojoba beads help to maintain the natural balance of the skin whilst lightly removing dead cells and the soothing essential oils will calm and support the skin too.
  • Moisturise. Try something light weight that either hydrates or controls oil during the day something that feels comfortable and that won't cause a heavy build up on the skin. I recommend Thalgo's Hydra-marine 24hr gel-cream each morning to keep the skin hydrated as we go into the colder winter months. Areas that have become sore for example the bridge of the nose or behind the ears can be protected by using a barrier cream to protect them from friction prior to putting on your mask.
  •  Regular facials - yep this really will help! Having a trained therapist take a look at your skin and advise further will help you to achieve glowing, blemish free skin whilst still complying with current mask wearing rules. personally I would recommend a gentle approach so that you don't over stimulate or sensitise the skin. Pinks Boutique Eco Chic facial or Thalgo's three algae facial will work wonders.