How to care for your skin when wearing a face mask
Who would have thought the 2020 staple fashion piece would be a… face mask? We definitely didn’t realize how essential they would be in our daily lives. We had our moment of optimism and invested in a few different masks that marry both form and function, but we’ve found that even the chicest offerings can’t control maskne or return the joy of wearing lipstick. This is why our skincare and make-up routines both required some tweaking. With this in mind, we’ll be covering what changes you should be implementing above the neck for maskne-free skin!
What is maskne?
Maskne is real, the medical term is acne mechanica which is acne that is exacerbated by rubbing or friction, like when wearing a mask. In addition to irritation from your mask, a humid environment also promotes acne. The humid environment created between your mask and skin combined with friction from your mask creates a place where acne can thrive, even on skin types that aren’t prone to breakouts. If you work a job that requires you to wear a mask for prolonged periods, we’re here to help!
How to avoid maskne
Step 1: Assess your current skincare routine
Has your skin become more oily or prone to dryness since you’ve been wearing a mask more? Are little whiteheads and bumps popping up? While this started from wearing a mask, your skincare products may also be playing a part in mask breakouts. You should steer clear of harsh scrubs, intense exfoliants, thick creams, and oil-based moisturizers. These can all aggravate your skin more when a mask is involved. If you have dry skin, opt for a gentle hydrating cleanser like Soy Face Cleansing Milk (Sephora, $50). If your skin is more oily, opt for products with salicylic acid. We started incorporating Paula's Choice 2% BHA Exfoliant (Paula's Choice, $30) with salicylic acid and have noticed fewer bumps from wearing a mask and overall smoother skin! Prioritize skin-soothing ingredients such as hyaluronic acid, aloe, and niacinamide. Don’t forget to moisturize! Oil-free is best. Depending on how long you’ve worn a mask, it’s a good idea to cleanse your skin after taking it off to remove trapped sweat and debris that gets lodged in pores.
Step 2: Choose the right mask and wash regularly
Disposable masks are great for quick trips but you should avoid wearing them for long periods as the fabric of these masks is more likely to irritate the skin (these also cause a lot of waste so avoid them altogether if you can). Be sure to choose a mask made of breathable and soft fabric, like cotton or silk, that will ease any kind of friction. And stock up on them! You should only be wearing your mask once, then washing it. Think of masks like underwear (seriously!). You want to easily be able to put on a clean mask rather than reintroducing dirt, oil, and debris from previous wears. When it comes to washing masks, use hot water and a fragrance-free detergent (fragrance is a skin irritant). The Bay has a few great silk mask options, we love this Satin Mask by Narces (The Bay, $30).
Step 3: Skip the foundation
Make-up trapped against your skin in a moist, humid environment = breakouts and clogged pores. What we’ve been doing is only applying make-up to the exposed portion of our face, leaving the skin under our mask make-up free and we have been saving tons of $ on make-up this way too. But if you must wear a full face, stick with a lightweight foundation like Nars Pure Radiant Tinted Moisturizer (Sephora, $58). Before putting on your mask, use a blotting-pad to gently remove the top layer that would rub off on your mask. You can also add in a matte lip balm, which will moisturize your lips without the stickiness.
Step 4: Express yourself with your eyes
With a limited portion of your face exposed, all the focus is on the eyes. So why not amp things up where you can? Our favourite way to do this is with long, full lashes via a lash lift and tint or lash extensions. Full lashes tend to make any look more glam, which we love now that masks are the new norm. Also, don’t be afraid to wear coloured liners, eye make-up is the perfect way to express yourself! Check out our previous blog on how to incorporate colour into your make-up to find some inspo that works for you.
Looking to amp up your eyes? Book a lash extension or lash lift and tint appointment with one of our certified lash technicians here! In addition to being certified, our lash technicians are also vetted by us and mobile, meaning they travel to you!