Mask acne, known as maskne, is the acne rash that arises on the skin due to the rubbing of the fabric and the humidity that is created in contact with the skin.
For some months now, the mask has become an indispensable accessory to wear daily to protect ourselves from the virus. An individual protection device which, if on the one hand is an ally to counter the spread of Covid-19, on the other it can become an enemy for the skin, causing irritation, redness and even acne.
The pimples that arise on the face right in the area where we wear the mask are called maskne from the association of the words mask and acne. It mainly affects people who suffer or have suffered in the past from acne, those with oily and impure skin but also sensitive skin. Taking care of the skin in this particular moment is therefore essential to combat acne breakouts.
What is Maskne and how it manifests itself?
The mask is a full-fledged acne rash that occurs in the area of the cheeks, chin and cheekbones. In these areas, pimples and folliculitis can therefore appear that differ from traditional acne mainly due to their triggering cause, or skin contact with mask.
The skin’s protective barrier is altered due to the rubbing and humidity that is created under the fabric, thus causing irritation, redness and acne breakouts.
For this reason, it is also essential to choose delicate fabrics for the mask, such as silk and cotton. There are different models of masks that allow you to insert the filter inside in order to have an effective protection while avoiding the contact of synthetic fabrics with the skin.
The causes of the maskne
The mask appears on the face mainly due to the rubbing of the mask and the humidity that is created in contact with the skin and mainly affects skins that already suffer from acne or those with acne-prone skin. Those who suffer from acne with mask can get worse because the mask creates a warm moist environment that weakens the skin. The pores tend to dilate and the bacteria can penetrate deeper, infecting the sebum glands.
If there is ongoing acne, with the mask, it can get worse and the treatments can be less effective. But this humid heat and the rubbing of the mask can also cause folliculitis, which is not a real acne, on subjects who have acne-prone skin even when acne hasn’t been showing for some time. In this case the boils are more superficial and smaller
Another factor that should not be underestimated is the cleaning of the mask, which plays a fundamental role in the prevention of these breakouts. If the mask is dirty, or you touch it with dirty hands or place it on a surface where bacteria are present, these can remain on the fabric, and when you put on the mask they transfer to the skin, creating inflammation.
However, the mask is not the only incriminating element. Another cause of these acne breakouts is to be found in stress, especially in this period where we have to keep social distances and life at home is not always easy. Acne is very related to stress, especially during this period. Stress increases androgen hormones which stimulate the sebum glands which swell easily.
The most affected area is that of the chin and lip contour but the boils also appear more in the area where the edge of the mask is in contact with the skin because it creates a rubbing.
Skincare anti-maskne: remedies and recommended products
Each form of acne is a form in itself and therefore each cure should be personalized, because no treatment is universal. The first remedy to refer to are non-aggressive products that try to rebalance the skin and stop the excessive spread of bacteria. Cleansers, creams and clay-based masks that contain Alusil, a new active complex of silver micro-sponges with Alukina with an antibacterial action are particularly suitable
Those who suffer from maskne must then pay particular attention to the use of detergents, just like those who suffer from traditional acne. An excessively foaming cleanser can in fact be too aggressive and further irritate the skin.
The most common mistake is to use very foaming or degreasing cleansers that are counterproductive because they drastically eliminate the sebum that is on the skin and for a rebound effect the skin will be even more oily and subject to imperfections. Therefore, delicate cleansers are preferred, for example those containing soothing and moisturizing substances such as Panthenol and Vitamin B5.
Red spots and bumps along your mask line are potential signs of maskne. Don’t not wear a mask during the COVID-19 pandemic; instead, follow the above mentioned tips.
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