How do you handle maskne?

I haven’t faced that issue myself, since we very, very rarely left the house for more than a doctor’s appointment kind of thing. I do like Tower 28’s SOS Daily Rescue Facial Spray for breakouts, generally.

— Christine


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Cameron Avatar

Wearing a new mask every day. Wash reusable masks daily. I don’t wear anything other than skincare and sunscreen if I have to wear a mask all day. I wash my face at night and never skip skincare. I haven’t had any problems with maskne, but I have had issues with rosacea flare ups.

Z Avatar

I haven’t experienced maskne. However, I do get dermatitis from mask usage. Turns out a hot, humid environment isn’t what my sensitive rosacea skin signed up for.

PSA to anyone using the Tower28 SOS spray – it’s just hypochlorous acid in water. You can buy a gallon jug of it from amazon for $20 – already diluted down to the same active concentration – or an 8 ounce squirt bottle (I keep mine in my gym bag) for about $13 (three dollars more than when I picked one up last year, but still better than what T28 charges I bet.

Z Avatar

I heard about it from Dr. Dray (dermatologist on youtube) last year and have been pretty pleased, but not like wowed by it. I suspect it’s not for my skin type. Either way it’s so much less of a financial risk to buy it from a “non-beauty brand.” You know those crazy markups on cosmetics.

Ana Maria Avatar

I always had my fair share of breakouts and have a routine to keep them in control… so I never noticed an increase from wearing mask.
I use at night BHA 5 times a week (and AHA the other 2), benzoyl peroxide once a week (and 2-3 days after brow threading, dentist or any procedure someone else touches my face) and this is my “secret” for finally getting rid of most of my acne.
Although during the summer, especially in 2020 and 2021 (the peak of wearing masks) I used in the morning Paula’s Choice azelaic acid booster, which I think somehow helped. I remember that in 2020 summer I even hiked with mask on 😅 (trails in California get pretty crowded, I wasn’t alone in the deep of the mountains).

Nina Avatar

I found out early that I was allergic to any mask that was scratchy, so I just carried 100 💯 cotton washable masks. Maybe not as functional, but the alternative especially with those blue cheap masks was a disaster. Cotton. Problem solved. Inoculated 3x. The best I can do and as always use common sense so I’ve tossed my masks. A time in history I’d like to forget and move on ~~

beachgal Avatar

Worked much of my adult life in medical labs, much of it with various masks on, and never had this issue. I would get red skin from irritation of sweat and hot breath behind my mask. I used to not wear foundation to work and it was better. I washed my face at meal & break times, avoiding my eyes to preserve my eye makeup. Didn’t help with chaffing from the masks, but keeping the skin was healthier than wearing dried sweat on my skin.

Deborah Avatar

Benzoyl peroxide will dry the skin and takes longer to destroy the acne. Salicylic acid kills the bacteria. Even at the age of 70 I have an occasional pimple. I prefer to use one of the salicylic acid dots. Peter Thomas Roth and Peace Out have the dots.

Katrina Avatar

Luckily, I’ve never had to deal with this. Federal Courthouses, by-and-large, are still completely remote. I’ve only gone to court twice since March 2020. And, my doctors are vigilant about telling me I may not survive COVID, so we are more housebound than the average bear.

But, when I was younger and had acne, aside from lasers and other wonders from my esthetician, steadily using Dennis gross peel pads are enough to keep acne at bay, and the PTR acne patches if you feel one coming on. I still use my Dennis Gross facial device – with the blue and red lights on. I swear before using that device my skin never looked as good. But, that’s the extent of at-home stuff I do for acne specifically.

Genevieve Avatar

I didn’t experience any maskne myself, but my daughter in law’s sister, who was an emergency nurse at a large hospital did, for the first time in her life. Anika wanted to get her some skincare products for Christmas that would help her and turned to me for advice. I researched the issue and this is what I found:
1. Once you arrive home from work – clean your face with some micellar water with either a clean facecloth or cotton pads to remove any excess build up of facial oil or dirt etc.
2. After a shower, using a gentle cleanser (I recommended Cetaphil’s Gentle cleanser – non foaming), then add either an oil to moisturise your face or Neutragena’s Hydro Boost Gel night time moisturiser to restore hydration to the face.
3. For acne spots – Benzac’s 2% cream to be used only on the afflicted areas.
4. The following morning, before work, clean the face with cool water only and add a day time Hydrating moisture cream – Neutragena’s Hydro Boost day moisturiser for example. Or CeraVe’s Moisturising Lotion was another product to use.
A clean mask every day and try to change your mask too during the day.
Anika’s sister found that the above worked really well and cleared up her maskne and dry skin issues.

Martha Avatar

I am so tired of masks, I can’t even tell you. For the occasional flare up I have found that the Nexcare Acne Absorbing Covers are fantastic and they also work well for my teenaged son. I am back to wearing a light foundation as I just don’t care anymore and fortunately the breakouts are not increasing.

Donna Avatar

Helpful information here. I was interested to try Tower 28’s SOS Daily Rescue Facial Spray but now that I’ve read the comments I guess I’m heading to Amazon instead. I don’t wear a mask long enough to have maskne but sometimes my skin gets red and irritated so eager to try.

Jen Avatar

I’m pretty fortunate that acne hasn’t been a big problem for me, even with the masks. When I do get something I use one of those Acne Spot Dots from Peach & Lily overnight and it’ll be greatly reduced if not gone by the next day.

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