Has anyone else's skin been going absolutely crazy lately? I know mine has, and I thought I was the only one - that was until I heard the word 'maskne' and realised why exactly the lower half of my face had suddenly decided to become red, angry and blemished.
If you’re reading this going 'what on earth is she talking about?!', I'll leave it to the experts to explain it best.
Board-certified dermatoligist MD Nazanin Saedi of Thomas Jefferson University says: “Maskne is acne formed in areas due to friction, pressure, stretching, rubbing or occlusion, you can see it in the areas covered by the mask and also the areas where the mask and face shields touch the skin.”
So, for you and me, that basically means that anywhere the mask touches, you're more likely to breakout.
Now, with no end to mask-wearing in sight for the near future, we at Moxi Loves have come up with some handy tips and tricks to minimise your maskne; continue to save lives while saving your skin, too.
1. Choose your masks wisely!
As grim as it sounds, spending hours breathing inside your mask is an absolute breeding ground for bacteria. A lot of washable masks on the market create a hugely humid environment inside due to the restrictive fabric trapping your breath inside, leading to acne breakouts and blackheads. So basically, it's the humidity! (Friends reference, anyone?)
Studies show that the best masks for protecting your skin are a lightweight cotton or silk. So, if you can, swap out your polyester masks for a more breathable (but safe!) fabric – your skin will thank you.
I personally love this 100% Mulberry Silk mask from Etsy as it's really comfortable, a must for long journeys on public transport, and fits close to your face - so important for making sure as few germs can get in and out as possible.
It also comes in lots of different colours, which is an added bonus if you're over the top like me and love to match your mask to your outfit!
100% Mulberry Silk Face Mask
2. Cleanse, cleanse, cleanse
As we've all been taught from an early age, cleaning your skin is important - that's a given.
But in this new wave of skin problems, we need to be careful about what type of products we're putting on our face. Dermatologists recommend using a gentle cleanser daily to clean your skin while preventing it from drying out.
For this, I really recommend our Moxi Loves Powder Pod Cleanser, as its unique detoxifying formula of oat, coconut and rice extract is gentle on the skin while deeply cleansing and hydrating. Being soap-free, it prevents your skin from drying out. A must for right now!
Moxi Loves Powder Pod Cleanser Detoxifying Powder Face Wash
Another great product is the CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser for Normal to Dry Skin, as it's essential ceramides help to protect the natural skin barrier while the fragrance-free formula makes it gentle enough for even sensitive skin.
CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser for Normal to Dry Skin
3. Stop over-washing
Now, I know this sounds contradictory to my previous point, but hear me out!
If you're anything like me, you'll be tempted to scrub your face as soon as you take your mask off every time, but you’re really doing more damage than good! By doing this you’re stripping your skin of it’s natural oils, making your face dry and irritated, and we definitely don't want that.
So, if you really feel like you need a refresh (perhaps if you’ve gotten particularly sweaty under your mask that day – we’ve all been there) then try a gentle micellar water to pat into your face. Save the actual face-washing for the end of the day!
For an on-the-go solution to this problem, I love to use our Moxi Loves Bare Faced Cleanser Infused Pads, just run them under a bit of water, swipe over your face and you'll feel instantly refreshed!
Moxi Loves Bare Faced Cleanser Infused Makeup Removal Pads
Another amazing product I love for a quick fix is a gentle toner. One I’ve been loving for a while now is the Bioderma Sensibio Tonique Soothing Moisturising Toning Lotion, which really helps to calm my skin down during a breakout. Just whack it on a cotton pad, give your face a gentle wipe down and you're good to go.
Bioderma Sensibio Tonique Soothing Moisturising Toning Lotion
4. Go fresh-faced!
Not only will the rest of your skin thank you for skipping the makeup a couple of times a week, but experts say it’s a key preventative for maskne. Trapping all of those oils under your mask is a recipe for clogged pores!
Trust me, I understand that going makeup free may not always be possible. One thing that I've done is choosing to opt for a lightweight BB cream or tinted moisturiser over heavy foundation if I still want some coverage - this will help to prevent those unwanted breakouts.
Personally, I absolutely love the Charlotte Tilbury Healthy Glow Moisturiser for that perfect summery lit-from-within look all year round. My absolute favourite thing about this product is just how hydrating it is - it feels just like a nourishing skincare product while still giving just enough coverage.
Charlotte Tilbury Unisex Summer Tint Moisturiser
5. Face masks - the other kind!
Solve face mask problems with face masks? Go on then! This one is a double whammy, to be honest.
Firstly, that extra boost of hydration you get from a mask (the skincare kind) can't go amiss while we're all having these extra skin struggles. It's a no brainer, really.
Secondly, if we've ever needed to take time out to pamper ourselves, now's the time. Full of stress and uncertainty as life is right now, I think we all deserve it, don't you?
One of the sheet masks I've been loving lately is the Simple 48Hour Glow Sheet Mask, which originally drew me in due to its Vitamin E antioxidants and to be honest, anything with the word 'glow' in it and I'm sold. And it does what it says on the tin, for just £3.49!
Simple 48hour Glow Sheet Mask
As much as I do love a sheet mask, I'm a big fan of mud masks as well – they just really feel like they’re working their magic!
My absolute favourite is Glamglow Supermud, which I use as an all over mask but also as a spot treatment overnight on breakout areas. It’s amazing and it gets rid of redness too, so makes the spots less angry looking – essential for these unwelcome maskne flare-ups.
GLAMGLOW Supermud Clearing Treatment