How to combat the dreaded “maskne”

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Face masks: Many have discovered they bring uncomfortable side-effects. Credit: Medium

AS protective face masks have become an essential part of everyone’s life thanks to COVID, many have discovered that regularly wearing one can have uncomfortable side-effects, mainly the dreaded “maskne”.

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But what exactly causes maskne?

According to dermatologists, the “constant rubbing of the masks against our skin causes micro-tears, allowing easier entry for bacteria and dirt to clog up our pores”.

Also, there is the damp, hot environment underneath your mask.


Breathing into a mask creates a warm, moist environment that leads to the build-up of oil, sweat and bacteria. Add the fact that face masks are designed to block things and it’s a recipe for skin disaster.

One way to combat it is to avoid thick skincare creams and swap them for more lightweight water-based products. A lightweight moisturiser can also act as an additional protective barrier and prevent chafing.


Ideally, you should use a mild and gentle exfoliator to support the absorption of your moisturiser.

Unsurprisingly, skincare brands have been quick to recognise the rise of maskne problems and items like facial barrier masks and anti-blemish patches have become more available.

Skincare companies have seen a strong rise in deep-cleansing products in the past few months.

This rise may be attributed to mask-related issues, including oilier skin and acne, as well as an increase in hygiene habits due to Covid-19.

However, while skincare is booming, the makeup industry has taken a bashing as more people are working from home and avoid going out.

Luckily, the demand for makeup is expected to rise again as life returns to normal, businesses begin to re-open their doors, and more people return to the workplace.




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