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Mask-ne (Mask Acne)

A new generation of skin problems is lurking beneath every mask and face covering. We know that prevention is better than cure, understanding the potential problem will allow you to avoid it.

We’re always on hand for help and advice if you need it.

Officially known as Acne Mechanica.

Let’s get this straight. This is not acne in the true sense, it’s a ‘man-made’ skin condition.

It usually effects the face, the area beneath your mask or face covering. Acne Mechanica can affect any area of the body too.

When you wear a mask or face covering you create an occlusive environment beneath it. The air under your mask is humid and warm, and the mask itself may cause friction.

Let us look at these 2 issues individually. 

The air under your mask is humid and warm – the ideal breeding ground for bacteria, fungus & virus

Breathing in and out in an occlusive environment means that nasal mucosa, oil, bacteria, fungus and virus are being deposited directly on to your skin.

This may lead to the development of Cutaneous bacterium (Cutibacterium acne).

You may also be more susceptible to the herpes simplex virus (cold sores) if you’re prone to them.

Its hot under a mask - this may lead to perspiration. Sweat contains bacteria and oil.

Sweat & bacteria mixed with make-up will lead to blocked pores and blackheads.

With all of this going on. It’s likely that your skin barrier (the protective barrier that keeps the goodness in and the badness out!) will become damaged, leading to dryness, dehydration, and sensitivity.

The mask itself may cause friction.

This may make your skin red and inflamed, which may also cause further damage to your skin barrier.

How to help yourself throughout the day:

  • Remove your mask (safely) as often as possible.
  • Change your mask regularly for a fresh one, if you’re wearing it for prolonged periods.
  • Avoid wearing heavy make-up when wearing a mask.
  • Avoid long wear and ultra-wear foundation when wearing a mask.
  • Avoid touching your face after applying drying hand sanitisers. It will transfer and dry your face.

Which products will help your skin best?

Essential Miracle Cleansing Jelly - a gentle yet effective cleanser, with no added fragrance. It will help your skin while vulnerable.

Essential Deep Cleansing & Skin Rejuvenation System - its 4 times more effective than manual cleansing. The perfect way to ensure your pores don’t become blocked. (Sorry currently out of stock, coming soon!)

Alternatively use our Deep Cleansing & Exfoliating Discs - they allow a deeper cleanse and an exfoliating scrub, ensuring your pores don't become blocked.

Essential Exfoliating Gel - prevents the build-up of dead cells. Dead cells block your hair follicles, and bacteria will ‘fester’ within them, leading to spots & blackheads.

Total Skin Repair Concentrate – will repair your skin, reduce inflammation and redness. Promote the healing process by stimulating regeneration and repair proteins (collagen, elastin). It’s your go to SOS treatment for all skin types.

Sensitive Skin Rich Cream - this will hydrate, nourish, calm and soothe your skin. Helping to reduce inflammation and keep you skin barrier intact.

Smoothing Resurfacing Mask or Repairing Nourishing Mask - depending on how dry your skin is, this weekly or bi-weekly treat will do exactly what it says on the tin. The Smoothing Resurfacing Mask isn’t harsh or aggressive, its deep cleansing formulation is infused with soothing Aloe Vera, which fights bacteria and virus on the skin


Keep your skin clean, strong, and hydrated. This will ensure your skin is able to work to its best potential. This will keep it as healthy as possible. This prevention is always better than cure. All of the products and treatments mentioned can be used to prevent Mask-ne, as well treat Mask-ne breakouts.

Please be careful, if you see spots appearing don’t rush out and buy harsh, stripping products for oily skin. It will make the problem worse.