FLORENCE, Ala. (WAFF) - Health experts say masks play an essential role in stopping the spread of coronavirus.
However, that doesn't mean your skin needs to pay the price.
If you've noticed a couple of acne spots after wearing your face mask, you're not alone, it's called 'maskne'.
"We've seen it for a long time, acne mechanica. Most commonly seen with helmet straps of football players in the past," said Medical Doctor Hilary Delarosa.
But now in a world where wearing masks are common, Delarosa says these break outs are especially prevalent in essential workers.
"But now we're all using our protective gear. Health care workers, grocery employees, retail employees, they're having some irritation from the masks," said Delarosa.
Wearing a mask can rub against your skin and the moisture and heat can cause irritation. She says that the acne can be caused from many different things so its best to be gentle and go easy on the anti acne treatment
“If you start an aggressive regime like retanole, chemical peels, any acidic type of topicals it can actually break down that fragile skin barrier that’s there and make that irritation worse,” said Delarosa.
That doesn't mean you have to accept "maskne" as just another irritating facet of life in 2020.
So what can be done?
- Try to Use cotton masks if possible
- Wash your mask after every use if possible
- Use a very gentle cleanser 2x daily
The most important thing she says, is to take care of your physical and mental health.
“Stress and what we put into our bodies have really been shown to affect our skin and even rashes, acne, everything. So cut back on those sugary foods. We’re all preaching about that and also low stress. Do some stress relieving exercises,” said Delarosa.