COVID-19 has obliged you to wear a face mask whenever you step out. While wearing a face mask plays a crucial role in protecting you from the coronavirus, it can affect the health and appearance of your facial skin.
Face masks can cause a few unwanted skin problems like redness, rashes, skin irritation, etc. In this article, we discuss various skin issues you may experience due to wearing a face mask and effective ways of preventing them. Read on to learn more.
What Are The Skin Problems Caused By Wearing A Face Mask?
1. Heat Rash
Heat rashes, also known as miliaria , happen due to sweat under your mask. When you put on a mask, the carbon dioxide increases underneath it, which raises the humidity level and the temperature of that area. Also, the bacteria and microorganisms from your mouth add up to the damage.
A mask covers up a larger area of your facial skin, reducing the airflow around it. Your face does not get the much-needed moisture from the air, which is essential for skin hydration by being covered. Adding up to the damage, the friction between your mask and skin causes skin rashes and irritation. Ultimately, constant friction, pressure, lack of moisture lead to acne.
COVID-19 has caused immense stress, which significantly impacts your mental health and skin health . It affects your hormonal balance. Your skin is the largest organ of your body and also the most targeted one by stress.
Rosacea  is a skin condition that triggers acne breakout and makes your blood vessel visible. Wearing masks can cause rosacea or worsen the skin condition among people who already have it. Rosacea is not like regular acne. It is a skin inflammation that breaks down the function of the skin barrier. And when your skin guard is down, you can be bombarded with skin issues.
How To Prevent Skin Problems From Wearing A Face Mask?
With the rising coronavirus pandemic, it is impossible to avoid wearing a mask. However, there are simple ways to prevent skin problems caused by wearing a face mask.
Masks make your skin sweat and drain out its moisture. It is necessary to clean your face regularly after using a mask. Your skin would appreciate a mild cleanser. Washing your face with water will help your skin stay hydrated and keep bacteria at bay.
A face mask makes your skin dry, and applying moisturizer is one of the most convenient dry skin remedies. It will boost the moisturizing layer of your skin and reduce dryness.
Once you are done with your mask, clean your face thoroughly, and apply the moisturizer. To prevent skin problems like rashes and irritation, use a moisturizer before and after wearing a mask.
If you have oily skin, you can go for a water-based moisturizer. In case of dry skin, get a moisturizing cream, and if you have combination skin, opt for lotion. If you have acne-prone skin, then it’s best to use a water-based moisturizer.
3. Avoid New Skincare Products
Your skin becomes more sensitive when you use a mask, and trying new over the counter skincare products may damage your sensitive skin. It is better to avoid experimenting with new skincare products if it’s not suitable for your skin type. You can always opt for customized skincare products instead.
4. Take Care of Your Lips
Chapped lips are another issue you may experience due to face masks. Use petroleum jelly or moisturizing lip balm on your lips to protect them from dryness. Apply the product before you wear the mask and also before going to bed.
5. Skip Makeup
Try to avoid wearing makeup beneath your mask. It will clog the pores of your skin, which may lead to acne breakouts. In case you can not avoid makeup, opt for non-comedogenic  (cosmetics specially formulated to prevent clogged pores) products.
6. Choose The Right Mask
We suggest following all the precautionary guidelines of wearing a mask and choosing something that does not suffocate you. It’s essential to wear something comfortable and soft, especially when you are wearing it for a long time. You can use soothing fabric masks to protect you from COVID- 19 and prevent your skin from redness, dryness, rashes, and other skin irritations.
7. Take Breaks
Wearing a mask for a long time can affect your skin as well as your overall health. When it is safe to take your mask off, take a 15-minute break every 4 hours. Do not forget to sanitize your hands while doing so.
8. Wash Your Masks
If you are wearing a reusable mask, then wash it after every use. Using a dirty mask will not only create skin issues but also increase the chances of catching an infection. Healthcare professionals also advise washing the mask after each use.
A face mask can indeed cause skin problems, but that should not stop you from wearing it. It is the need of this hour, and you need to follow safety methods to keep yourself protected from the deadly coronavirus.
Therefore, you can try the tips we have provided to prevent face mask oriented skin problems. If you have any severe skin issue due to face masks (which is less likely), please contact a dermatologist immediately.
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