MASKNE: “Since I’ve been wearing a face mask, I’ve noted that I’m getting more spots and blackheads. My skin’s really irritated”. “My skin’s very red, due to friction with the mask. I just don’t know what to do to improve it”. This is probably one of the most often repeated comments over the last year, in a large part of the population with sensitive skin or more likely to be affected by certain environments or temperatures. The phenomenon, known as MASKNE, a form of mechanical acne that appears as a result of the continued use of face masks, is one of the most frequent reasons for consulting a dermatologist at this moment in the pandemic.
IT Pharma, the Navarra-based company for clinical cosmetics and aesthetic medicine, tells us why these skin conditions occur and how we can improve them, both professionally with in-cabin treatments as well as with homecare products that take good care of our skin.
Why am I getting more spots than before?
MASKNE is a type of acne that appears in the nose, mouth and chin area due to the daily use of a face mask, which makes skin oxygenation difficult in the area and promotes a warm and humid microclimate that blocks the pores, leading to the appearance of blackheads, sebaceous secretion, sweat and bacteria. All this accumulation of factors, together with the friction caused by the mask, intensifies the breakouts of acne in men and women alike.
How can I effectively improve this problem?
IT Pharma argues that it is essential to treat the skin from different perspectives in order to avoid these undesired effects on the skin, taking into account that each person is a unique case and that the right thing to do is to see a professional dermatologist. This will make it possible to determine the most suitable cosmetic or medical treatment for the acne in question.
The ideal protocol for this type of acne would be a combination of professional in-cabin treatments at a reputable centre, followed by some good homecare treatments. All kinds of aggressive techniques should be avoided, such as micro-needling or exfoliation, going for radiofrequency or topical massage with products containing active ingredients that are tailored to the skin’s needs in each treatment phase.
First and foremost, the problem must be correctly understood. There is a generalised skin asphyxiation that must be resolved before going on to treat the effects resulting from this. The in-cabin treatment can be divided into three phases: cleansing, hydration, regeneration. Subsequently, these treatments should be completed with high-quality homecare products that protect the skin from maskne and prevent further breakouts.
Gentle cleansing and good skin regeneration.
Good cleansing by the esthetician is essential. This unclogs the pores, removes the dirt and allows the skin to breathe again. For this, a neutral cleansing milk should be used, avoiding exfoliation or more aggressive products, or oils that block the pores once more.
Once this has been done, we would recommend deeply hydrating the area with a concentrate of hyaluronic acid such as HA Lifting, which increases the water content of the skin and keeps it hydrated. At the same time, it is advisable to reactivate the microcirculation in the area, in order to specifically avoid this generation of dirt and clogged pores. Fumitory or horse chestnut extract, or active ingredients such as artichoke extract, present in Liposintrol or Cynarin, will facilitate this activity.
As a final phase of in-cabin treatment, it would be appropriate to apply cell regeneration products, such as Scultur Refort or Silicio Orgánico, to firm and remineralise the area and also to stimulate the synthesis of collagen and elastin through the use of Silicio Orgánico.
INBIOTEC AMBER: hyaluronic acid combined with succinic acid
Succinic acid is an active ingredient that is sourced from amber, with powerful antioxidant, anti-ageing and anti-inflammatory effects, that acts directly in the Krebs cycle, responsible for cell regeneration. In combination with the powerful preservation, protective and hydrating effects of hyaluronic acid, this injectable product is the perfect solution for dealing with mechanical acne. Inbiotec amber is applied in various sessions by a professional esthetician.
Finally, there are the homecare products, as a complement to the in-cabin treatment. Apart from avoiding continuous rubbing as far as possible and removing the face mask at home or whenever permitted, it is very important to protect your skin on a daily basis in order to prevent further maskne breakouts. The FA&HA from the IT Pharma post-treatment ESSENTIALS range, makes this easier thanks to its content in ferulic acid, a powerful antioxidant, combined with hyaluronic acid to maintain the hydration, and vitamin E to reduce the effect of free radicals.
Keeping up this facial skincare routine in this new normal, will help you to maintain perfect, well-cared-for, healthy skin.