Acne associated with friction of fabric touching your skin (like a hat, mask, or helmet) is called acne mechanica. We all have tiny little hair follicles on our face, chest and back, and wearing anything that creates friction and pressure can irritate the hair follicles and result in an acne flare.
While vital for helping protect yourself and others from viruses and bacteria, face masks are causing an increasing number of cases of acne mechanica. We’re here to share some tips on how to prevent acne mechanica from wearing a mask, whether you wear it for 8 hours a day or less than one.
- Wash your face before donning a mask
Using a gentle face wash before putting on a mask and going out can help wash away dirt and oil that could get trapped and become a breeding ground for bacteria and acne. Be careful to avoid rubbing or scrubbing the skin.
- Skip the Makeup
Even wearing a little makeup can contaminate your mask pretty quickly. Masks also act as occlusive barriers which means that makeup can become trapped and lead to breakouts. Makeup residue can also soil the fabric of your mask.
- Wear only a clean mask
Keep a rotation of clean masks on hand to avoid wearing the same mask before washing. This will help keep dirt and bacteria from rubbing against your face.
- Use a fragrance free laundry detergent
When washing your mask, use a fragrance free detergent and lay flat to dry. Fragrance within fabric can be an irritant, so you definitely don’t want it on your face especially for long periods of time.
Well, what if it’s too late and you already have acne that you suspect is caused by wearing a mask? Here are a few tips to help once acne mechanica has already set in.
- Use a cleanser containing benzoyl peroxide
A scrub could cause additional skin irritations if your acne is being caused by friction. This benzoyl peroxide cleanser can help reduce acne-causing bacteria on your skin.
- Use a non-comedogenic moisturizer after washing
Irritation can be compounded by dry skin. Using a light moisturizer can help ease the effects of friction and restore balance to your skin.
- As always, try not to pick at your skin or touch your face
If you have acne, whether it be for a long time or just a short period, you’ve heard not to touch your face before as to not exacerbate it. This is doubly true now. Help your skin heal more quickly by not picking or touching it.
Thank you for reading our tips for preventing helping care for acne caused by wearing a mask. The next step to getting your skin clear is to visit us by booking your appointment at our website. We can help develop a customized routine for clearing your acne, no matter what the cause. You are also welcome to give us a call at 801-800-6602. If you prefer, we also offer online consultations to suit your needs and comfort.