However, they do present some problems when it comes to your skin, creating the perfect environment for acne breakouts and clogged pores that result in pimples, blemishes and even rashes.
The lack of vitamin D your skin receives, bacteria build-up and humidity behind your mask are also contributors. Many of us will have seen the images of frontline workers after their shifts, showing skin imperfections as a result of wearing them for hours on end; massive shout out to all of these individuals, you’re all heroes.
Whilst this sounds very much like more doom and gloom (which we don’t need any more of right now!) we’re here to tell you there are ways to keep such skin concerns at bay. Here goes.
Choosing the right kind of mask
Spending a few extra pounds on the right mask will have long-term benefits for your skin. Your mask should cover your whole lower face area and be made of skin-friendly fabrics, such as cotton or silk, which are breathable, soft and natural choices.
If you’ve got sensitive, acne-prone or oily skin, a mask with cotton on the inside will also help to protect against breakouts and bacteria build-up. Fabrics to avoid? Nylon, polyester and rayon.
Make sure your mask is clean
A fairly obvious piece of advice is to keep your mask clean, so you don’t give bacteria a perfect breeding ground to cause havoc with your skin. Machine wash it on a hot setting use a good detergent, but be sure to use a gentle, enzyme-free choice, especially if you have sensitive skin.
As many of us aren’t used to wearing face coverings on a regular basis, certain products might present unexpected problems with the skin across your face. Try one of those listed here. It’s also a good idea to purchase several masks if you can, so you can rotate them every couple of days, though this might be more frequent depending on your skin health.
Set aside extra time to give your skin some TLC
It doesn’t look like the mask-wearing period is going away anytime soon, so doing some research and investing in your skincare routine a little more is a good move. Making sure you cleanse each day, morning and night will help to keep your skin free of dirt, bacteria and thus, inflammation. We recommend a clay face mask a few times a week for those susceptible to acne.
Use anti-oxidant-rich products
Products containing Vitamin C are anti-oxidants and will ensure your skin is bright and healthy-looking, neutralising any free radicals (unstable molecules that cause damage to our cells) and repair damaged cells. A post-lockdown professional vitamin C skin peel will also penetrate your epidermis, accentuating the effects of routine and daily skincare maintenance.