How To Rid Yourself of the Horrors of Maskne & Mask Mouth

Whether it’s because you wanted to make a quick run to the grocery store or an 8-hour work shift, we’ve all had to wear masks. However, because of this increased use of masks, many of us struggle with mask acne (or more commonly known as maskne) and mask mouth (sour breath). Mask acne commonly occurs on the lower half of the face (where your mask would sit). This includes the area around the lips and the chin . It is mainly caused by dirt and bacteria clogging your pores because of prolonged mask use and is accelerated by sweat and condensation from our breath.
  1. 1. Make sure to wear a new mask every day 

    Wearing a clean, new mask everyday whether its a disposable mask or a washed reusable one could help with this issue. Not only is this essential protocol which should be followed for COVID-19, but it ensures you are not re-introducing the bacteria into your skin.  Don’t forget to change your mask every few hours!

  2. 2. Less is more

    If you’re struggling with mask acne, a minimal makeup look, or a no makeup look could help with this issue. At the bare minimum, you could try not wearing makeup on the lower half of the face where the mask sits. This lessens the chances of your pores being clogged by makeup constantly rubbing against your skin. 

    gental, simple, clean skincare cream product
  3. 3. Prevention is key

    A key part in treating mask acne involves knowing how to prevent it. An important tip is to make sure you properly moisturize your skin the night before. If you think about it, your skin has breaks (or disruptions) in the form of acne. Breaks in the skin increase transepidermal water loss which is the process by which we lose water through our skin overnight naturally. When you break out, this process is sped up, meaning you have greater water loss from the skin. Being that the lower area of the face can easily get dehydrated and sensitized, using a heavier, richer moisturizer is paramount, and this greatly reduces the chances of breaking out. 

  4. 4. Avoid mouth breathing 

    Nose breathing is the way to go, especially if you’re struggling with mouth odor. Mouth breathing causes warm bacteria to go back and forth into your mouth (particularly condensation). Your mouth’s warm, moist environment is the perfect breeding ground for bacteria that may cause infections and odor. Thus, minimizing mouth breathing is your safest bet. 

    3 toothbrushes with a teal / turquoise background
  5. 5. Maintain a proper routine

    This goes for both your skin and your dental hygiene. Maintaining a basic skincare routine which includes removing every trace of makeup, cleansing and moisturizing is a key step towards better skin and ultimately mask caused acn.  In addition, brushing twice a day and giving special attention to brushing your tongue can help prevent that much dreaded odor.  You could also go the extra mile and use mouthwash as part of your routine.

    Applying sunscreen on hand
  6. 6. Sanitize your hands 

    Particularly when you are breaking out do not touch your face unless you have properly cleansed your hands. In a time like this, we should be sanitizing and cleaning our hands all the time. However, it’s very important that your hands are clean when you’re taking off your mask, touching your face in any setting or applying skin care products. This simple tip usually tends to get overlooked but is a key factor in preventing maskne. 

  7. 7. Alternative Measures 

    Despite the fact that you may have tried all the above methods you still might occasionally break out or struggle with the horrors of mask mouth. Not to worry though, because I have it all figured out. For bad breath, chewing minty gums could greatly help with killing that odour. As for the acne, there's a variety of excellent solutions on the market that may alleviate and contain the breakout. However, make sure you aren't using them all at once. 

  8. 8. Pimple Patches 

    Pimple patches usually containing hydrocolloid essentially work as mini dressings for your pimples, and dry them out, while protecting them from bacteria, gunk and even your own fingers. Pimple patches can significantly minimize the look of your blemishes.  Pimple patches are a must for you if you’re prone to touching your face often. The Peace Out Acne Healing Dots are a superb choice for this category.

  9. 9. Spot treatments

    Spot treatments are applied directly to the breakout point. These work by delivering acne fighting ingredients directly on to the affected area and can help reduce redness and pain overnight. A top rated pick from Sephora includes the Mario Badescu Drying Lotion. 

    Some skin care products arranged next to flowers
So, this rounds up my best tips. I know these may seem simple and basic, but as Charles W. Chestnut once said and I quote ‘We sometimes underestimate the influence of little things.’ Lastly, my apologies if this may seem obvious, but things like drinking an adequate amount of water, cutting sugary foods from your diet, washing your makeup brushes and replacing your pillow covers often,  help with acne in general and that logic applies here too.