Mascne is basically acne caused from wearing face masks and face coverings. Something I never thought I’d be wrinting a post on. BUT these are the times we are living in and Mascne is real and probably here to stay, at least for awhile.
SO….Mascne is a type of acne called acne mechanica. Acne mechanica is a form of acne that anyone can get, but it’s especially common in athletes, teenagers and soldiers. Typically these are the people wearing helmets, chin straps, headbands and face masks, but nowadays, this applies to everyone! This type of acne is triggered by excess heat, pressure, friction or rubbing of the skin. Basically effecting skin areas that are under occlusion. Acne mechanica can develop anywhere on the face or body (like the back, shoulders, or buttocks). But right now it’s showing up on my face from constantly wearing a face mask and face shield. And I know this is true for so many of my clients and others.
The combination of sweat and oil under occlusion can lead to the pores becoming clogged and then inflammed. This is a recipe for acne in all different forms. Whiteheads, blackheads, cysts, pustules and papules.
Since this type of acne has clear causes you can try to prevent some of these aggrevators as much as possible:
- Make sure the skin is clean before applying anything onto it
- Do not wear makeup under your mask or face shield
- Try to remove the mask and/or face shield as often as possible to give the skin a break, allowing for air and proper circulation
- Shower or cleanse the skin as soon as possible when you get home
So let’s talk about some great products to help you treat and prevent mascne. PCA BPO (benzoyl peroxide) wash is AMAZING at quickly reducing inflammatory acne and reducing blackheads and whiteheads. This is a better option for oily skin as it can be drying. Revision Papaya Enzyme Cleanser is a great option for dryer skin types or sensitive skin. PCA Acne Gel can be a great addition to your regimen when your having a flare up OR to prevent one. This is a salicylic acid gel that can be used full-face ( I like to add a pump to my serum or moisturizer ) or as a spot treatment for just the areas breaking out. Salicylic acid is derived from aspirin so you can imagine how effective it is at reducing inflammatory acne. It also kills bacteria and breaks down oily plugs that block the pores. If you are on the dry side, you can add 1 pump of acne gel with 1 pump of Revision Hydrating Serum.
If your not using a retinol nightly, first of all, START! Retinol is our do-it all product! We always recommend it for anti-aging because it helps prevent collagen loss and stimulate collagen production. It does this by increasing cellular turnover. By increasing the cellular turnover, the pores remain less clogged and blocked, reducing acne. So as you can see its a win/win product. If your acne is more advanced and aggressive, extremely inflammed, etc., retinol will also help minimize the appearance of scarring and prevent new scarring. If you are new to using a retinol I recomm Revision DEJ Night. A combination of the infamous DEJ moisturizer and a gentle .25% retinol. Very little to no acclimation with the skin. It is actually quit soothing and anti-inflammatory while providing the cellular turnover result you need. If you are already using a .25% or .5% retinol you can easily bump up to a 1%.
Adding a clay mask 2-4 times a week can make a HUGE difference. Revision Black Mask draws out and absorbs oil while reducing inflammation. This mask also contains some salicylic acid to reduce inflammation and bacteria while providing a lot of antioxidant benefit.
As you can see, inflammation is mentioned over and over again in this post. Inflammation is 1 of 3 major components of acne, the others being oil and bacteria. The reason why i talk about inflammation so much and products that help reduce it is because if we can shut down the inflammation you run less risk of post inflammatory hyperpigmentation (PIH) and scarring.
If you continue to see breakouts after adding these acne fighting products, we recommend you see a dermatologist or PA at Accent Dermatology. You don’t want to let acne get out of your control!
Please contact us for a consultation if you are struggling with this new and unusual skin concern in this new and uncertain time. 720-420-4090