During the COVID-19 pandemic, not only have you had to deal with your skin being subjected to increased time indoors and the stress that has naturally accompanied these past few months, you're now having to get used to wearing masks which may be further challenging your skin. Wearing one, particularly for prolonged periods, means you are breathing into a closed tight space which creates humidity and can accelerate the processes that cause acne. The term 'mask-ne' has been used to describe these breakouts - as if you haven't got enough to deal with without spots getting in the way!
Having a mask on for any period can be challenging if you're not used to wearing them and the impact it can have on the skin really can be irritating (quite literally!) With that in mind, here are my top tips to keep your skin healthy and fresh whilst wearing your mask out and about.
Regularly Wash Your Mask
If you're using a machine washable, reusable face mask, make sure you are washing it (at least 40 degrees) after every use. If you're using public transport, it might be good to use a different one for both morning and evening commutes - just to keep things fresh!
Store It Safely
Don't keep your mask in your pocket or at the bottom of your handbag; no matter how clean they are! It's recommended to fold the mask in half (lengthwise or width-wise), so the outside surfaces are touching each other, and place it carefully into a separate clean storage area or bag. This ensures you're preventing it from further dirt and germs, which could end up reaching your face.
Keep It Au Natural
Try and avoid wearing makeup – certainly on the lower half of your face. As you breathe, it creates heat under the mask which will open your pores. If you're wearing make-up, this can easily get trapped in the skin which may cause breakouts and inflammation - so if you can, go bare-faced and beautiful!
Hydrate! Hydrate! Hydrate!
Hydrated skin is healthy skin so ensure you're drinking plenty of water to hydrate the surface of your skin, since it will be expelling sweat and sebum faster in the heated conditions of your mask. Ideally you should be trying to drink 1.2-2 litres every day. so....bottoms up!
Clean That Pretty Face
Use an antibacterial facial wash to cleanse your face when you get home in the evening. Not only is it a fab way of unwinding after a busy day, it will also remove dirt and bacteria from your day which will help prevent breakouts and irritation.
Use Good Quality Skincare
By using good quality skincare, you're ensuring your skin is receiving the correct vitamin and replenishment it needs to function in tip top condition.
Looking for a stylish, reusable mask? These ones handmade from Scottish company Stitch & Ink are great. If your acne is getting you down and you'd like some guidance on a skincare routine then book in for a consultation.
Update 4 January 2021 - You can now purchase a Mask-ne Skincare Pack online and Save £38 whilst maintaining healthy skin.