woman putting a facemark on

Maskne – How To Care For Your Skin While Wearing A Mask

2020 has been full of surprises. Today, most of us are living a new normal we never would have ever dreamed of before. We’ve overcome obstacles and adjusted nearly every part of our lives, uncertain of what the future holds or what’s coming next. The pandemic has challenged us in ways we never thought possible, including our skincare. Enter maskne.

OK, we get it, in the grand scheme of things, skincare really isn’t that important (Kim, there’s people that are dying) but Maskne is real and it’s not going away. If 2020 hasn’t been hard enough seeing our skin going to ruin seems like the final insult to injury but don’t worry, there are things we can do to restore our skin to its former dewy glory.


Maskne is exactly as it sounds; acne caused by wearing a mask. As the pandemic marched on and our masks became pretty much permanently attached to our faces many of us started to notice breakouts and bad skin around our mouths, cheeks and nose.

This is because masks create a humid environment that can cause sweat and oil to build up which in turns clogs pores and causes spots.

Masks can also irritate our skin which can lead to breakouts, especially if you suffer from sensitive skin. They can also rub against the skin causing friction which results in opening pores that can then become clogged.

So, what can you do to avoid getting maskne?


1. Wash your mask

It might sound obvious but make sure you wash your mask and wash it often. Buy a couple of good quality, reusable masks to wear in rotation and wash each one after use. Think of them like your underwear; you wouldn’t wear the same pair for a week at a time so don’t do it with your mask. Stick it in a hot wash with your usual laundry or soak in hot water for about 30 minutes. If you suffer from sensitive skin try to avoid perfumed laundry detergents which will only irritate your skin further.

2. avoid wearing makeup

If there’s one positive to come from lockdown it’s been the chance to go make up free. With very few reasons to leave the house most of us have ditched the foundation and favoured the au naturel look. Keep it up; wearing makeup will suffocate your skin further. The mask is already covering your skin so don’t block your pores even further by adding makeup into the mix.

You can learn more about what happens to your skin when you go make up free here.


Ideally, you should cleanse your skin every time after you’ve worn a mask but we know this isn’t always practical. Instead, you might need to up your skincare routine, paying particular attention to cleansing. Make sure you wash your face as soon as you get home and can take your mask off.

4. invest in a good mask

Not all fabrics are created equal and that’s never been more true when it comes to picking your mask. Cheap, synthetic fabrics can stop your skin from breathing; they’re great for creating warm, humid environments which bacteria love. They can also irritate the skin if they don’t fit correctly all which leads to breakouts.

Instead, favour masks made from organic cotton and silk. These allow the skin to breathe and can be washed easily. Make sure you’re wearing a mask that fits your face correctly; you want it to be snug (but not too tight) and that can move as your face does. If you really want to make sure you’re wearing a mask that will help combat maskne check out these antimicrobial ones from The Light Salon.

5. Adjust your skincare routine

We might have spent years perfecting it but now might be the time to tweak your skincare routine. If you’ve traditionally favoured thick, heavy moisturisers or creams replace these with lightweight, water-based products instead. Your pores are already under threat of being clogged so make sure you’re avoiding products that could clog your pores further.

Speaking of moisturisers you’re going to want to put on a nice lightweight one before you wear a mask; this will act as a barrier between your skin and the mask offering another layer of protection.


Try to avoid harsh scrubs and chemicals during this time. Your skin (and probably your mind!) is going through enough already with this pandemic so make sure you’re kind to your skin (and yourself!) Ditch any harsh scrubs and instead invest in high-quality organic products.

2020 has been a tough year with much of it out of our control. Do what you can to look after your skin and don’t be too hard on yourself if it at some points it all seems like everything is going south and remember: maskne isn’t going to be around forever.

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