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Maskne or Mascne.

The newest member of the acne family!

First things first, it’s important to differentiate between regular acne and Maskne. Maskne is acne caused by the frequent wearing of a surgical or cloth face mask following COVID19 requirements. If you notice pimples or acne appearing right after wearing a mask, that should be a giveaway that you are experiencing maskne rather than regular acne.

The main reasons why you might be seeing new acne on your face following the continuous wearing of face masks could be:

  1. The type of mask you are wearing and the material it is made up of, using the disposable mask multiple times, or using the cloth multi-use mask without washing it regularly.
  2. Wearing face masks increases the temperature and humidity around the face, which in turn pushes the facial glands to produce more secretions. This will lead to oil and moisture forming over the bottom half of the face and sequentially the appearance of acne. This is then carried to the upper half of the face due to our hands touching our faces.
  3. Using comedogenic products under the mask aggravates your skin and clogs pore even more.
  4. Another reason could be mistaking allergy with acne. Some masks include rubber or plastic, or other allergic ingredients which may be causing irritation instead of acne.
  5. Wearing masks made from stiff or irritating materials could cause a lot of irritation, which compromises your skin barrier and subjects your skin to breakouts.
  6. Wearing makeup under the mask for prolonged periods combined with humidity under the mask triggers breakouts due to the clogging of pores.

How can we prevent maskne?

  1. If you are using a one-time disposable surgical mask, it is important to throw the mask away after use. If you are using a cloth mask, wash the multi-use cloth mask after every use with a non-irritating fragrance-free soap or detergent.
  1. It is recommended to reduce clogging pores around the area covered by the mask, which means wearing less makeup. If you must wear makeup, try looking into tinted sunscreens, using makeup products that are labeled as non-comedogenic that have a light, breathable formula.
  1. It is important to properly cleanse the skin after long hours of wearing the mask. It advised to use an oil-based cleanser, while rubbing the skin gently using soft circular motions for 30 to 60 seconds to dislodge any dirt trapped in the pores.
  2. Covering up part of the face means the skin will absorb the ingredients found in the skincare routine. It is better to opt for fragrance-free products and ensure you use the right amount of products (pea size) to further prevent oily skin and excess secretions.
  3. People with sensitive skin should make sure that their cloth masks are made of 100% cotton or silk as they are gentler on the skin and don’t aggravate through excessive friction.


Finally, we recommend visiting a dermatologist for a thorough diagnosis and treatment if you fear that this acne might persist longer and leave scars.

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