If wearing a mask has your skin stressed out, you’re not alone. According to our VP of Product Development, Francine Krenicki, “a mask is like an enclosed environment. With that, you have sweat and oil and fabric rubbing and chafing against your skin, not to mention heavy breathing and humidity as irritants.” Though it may seem ironic that as you’re keeping germs out more are getting trapped within, it’s a fact. And that area is what we like to call the M Zone, and in today’s new normal, it needs extra care. From humid temperatures to Fall’s big chill, wearing a mask can unmask some severe skin issues.
We asked Krenicki her advice for any number of mask-related skin concerns you may be having. Here’s what she had to say:
Masks can cause two main types of skin problems for different skin types. First, for periodic mask wearers with sensitive skin, chafing and dryness can occur. The other, are those who wear masks all day or regularly and have oily skin, thus causing breakouts and blemishes.
For the dry and chafed set, Krenicki recommends soothing products that help boost your skin barrier while moisturizing with emollients for recovery. Since chafing is a friction-induced skin concern, use a product like SD Advanced PLUS Intensive Moisturizing Concentrate to help build up your skin barrier while boosting hydration and moisture with soothing emollient butters and oils that help calm down skin.
On the other side of the fence is skin irritation caused by bacteria leading to rashed and pimply skin. Blemishes and breakouts need deep cleaning regularly. That’s why Krenicki recommends our Daily Reveal™ Exfoliating Pads to help cleanse and tone the skin. A new take on typical astringent pads, our unique treatment delivers both chemical exfoliation with four types of acids, plus physical exfoliation with a micro-peel textured pad. Getting rid of oil and debris buildup on the face is vital, and for those whose skin tends to be more dry or sensitive, you need to cleanse. We love our Comforting Cream Cleanser to gently cleanse, nourish, and replenish while keeping your skin barrier strong.
And speaking of masks, a skincare mask could be your new BFF for trouble areas caused by covering up. For dry and chafed skin, we love our soothing Cloudberry Moisture™ Plumping Cream Mask.At the same time, our Multi-Action Blue Rescue Clay Renewal Mask or our Glycolic Skin Reset Mask is excellent for oily, breakout-prone skin to help dry up blemishes, unclog pores, and deep clean.
So, what type of face-covering/mask is best to avoid irritation? Krenicki recommends disposal masks as the best way to keep clean as cloth masks (cute as they are) trap in too much bacteria and sweat. So, unless you plan to wash them frequently, you may suffer from #maskproblems. For the best hygiene, a paper mask refreshed daily is the absolute best way to protect your M Zone. If you want to recycle your masks/continue with cloth, always wash them in hot water and use fragrance-free detergent, and wash after each use to limit germs.
Don’t forget that lips and the skin around them can also lose moisture when under a mask. Reach for a protective and hydrating product like Double Fix™ for Lips to visibly plump and smooth while also reducing the look of fine vertical lines. Since this glossy formula is color-free, you’ll keep your mask clean no matter how often you swipe it on.
And you may want to take it easy on the makeup while your skin is irritated to give it time to heal. To get a little coverage with a lot of skin-loving ingredients, try our Line BlurFector™ Instant Wrinkle Blurring Primer. Often used as a base for makeup, this breathable primer is perfect for helping blur imperfections/irritations and wrinkles when you need it most. And never forget an SPF. A mineral-based SPF won’t irritate the skin but will protect against the elements and provide a hint of tint or a subtle glow for daily defense. Your M Zone will thank you.