With prolonged wearing of face masks due to COVID-19, some people are experiencing breakouts in the areas that the mask touches the most. Inflammation, hyperpigmentation, redness, and breakouts are among the most common reactions to masks. These breakouts have been dubbed “maskne” by major publications like Health.com and Elle Magazine. Maskne is characterized by tiny whiteheads that pop up after wearing your mask or other face protection. Especially impacted areas are the chin, the under-eye area, and cheeks.
While conditions like inflammation and redness can heal and don’t have long term effects, hyperpigmentation and skin damage from breakouts can last much longer and, in some cases, leave permanent skin damage. To avoid this, we recommend updating your skincare routine and following our tips below to prevent further irritation.
1. Make sure your mask isn’t too tight!
It’s important for the mask to fit snugly around your face to prevent respiratory droplets from coming in or going out. However, you don’t want the mask to be tight to the point that it hurts your face, makes it hard to breathe, or creates irritation. Some essential workers, who have to wear masks for prolonged amounts of time, have created hairstyles like spacebuns, which Cosmopolitan calls “the answer to a plethora of hair problems”, or wearing headbands with buttons to help alleviate some of the pressure caused by bands around the ears.
2. Consider wearing cotton masks.
There are many types of masks available. While N-95 masks are the officially approved masks for use during COVID-19. However, these masks are only able to be decontaminated and reused up to three times. Consider wearing cotton masks, which are considered to have better ventilation and therefore, trap less of the moisture that builds up from breathing and sweating. Handsewn cotton masks are also washable. Make sure to wash them with a gentle, hypoallergenic wash to avoid skin reactions.
3. Create a skincare routine that caters to the areas the mask covers the most.
Breathing in these masks can lock in moisture, making the masks and the skin they cover a breeding ground for bacteria. To combat this, it’s important to wash your face with a gentle cleanser to avoid “maskne” or acne breakouts around the mouth, chin and cheeks area. AVYA uses some of the most innovative skincare technology and ancient ayurvedics to create products that fight inflammation and hyperpigmentation and combat signs of aging to heal and nourish from deep within.
The best facial cleanser is a non-foaming cleanser that removes impurities without stripping the skin, leaving skin clean and balanced. AVYA’s Gentle Cleanser contains an ancient blend of botanical extracts of Neem, Turmeric, and Peony work to fight redness and inflammation and premature signs of aging caused by daily stressors like free radicals.
- Neem has been used in India for centuries as an effective emollient that aids in the infusion and retention of moisture. This super-healing ingredient is also used to reduce redness and inflammation and to relieve dry or itchy skin.
- Turmeric comes from curcumin plants indigenous to India. It has properties that protect and heal UV damage and is also an antibacterial. A recent study found that turmeric can slow signs of aging in humans.
- Peony has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties that fight against free radicals and slow signs of aging.
Salicylic Acid gently exfoliates to fight acne while Witch Hazel helps soothe skin and shrink the appearance of pores. Following your cleansing routine, it’s important to hydrate the skin with a nourishing moisturizer. Using our bestselling face cream with sun protection, skin feels plump and healthy, without looking greasy. These simple steps will help combat unwanted inflammation and redness that wearing a mask can cause.