Face Masks and Skin Irritations

Posted on Healthcare By DoctorUna - Published on 2021-01-12

Wearing masks while venturing outside your house is considered the new normal nowadays. Why not? If it keeps you safe & free from catching infections, wearing masks is definitely a rule that diligently needs to be followed by world citizens. 

Be it a normal cloth mask or a medical mask, all masks do cause some minor skin irritations. The constant rubbing action against your skin can lead to irritations. The oil, dirt, sweat, and make-up only adds to the skin problems resulting in rashes and acne. The parts that come in direct contact with the mask-band tend to be the most vulnerable areas. Even the continuous breathing process going on underneath the mask can irritate the skin due to the build-up of moisture. 

Let us discuss some wondrous tips to keep your skin protected from pesky skin irritations from frequently using face masks:

  • Wash your face just before wearing a mask and also after removing it

Do not forget to wash and clean your face with a mild facial cleanser before you don a mask and also after you remove it once you get back home. The build-up of oil and dirt can be effectively prevented. You will remain blemish-free even while using face masks. 

  • Avoid heavy make-up 

It is advisable to use very little or no make-up when you are wearing masks. The face mask is most likely to rub against your face and remove the make-up. Moreover, using make-up can irritate the skin by blocking the pores and clogging the oil glands. Let your skin be free of additional barriers and let it breathe. 

  • Buy good quality face masks 

Make sure you buy superior quality face masks that are soft and natural. Go for breathable clothing or fabrics that help filter the air without absorbing all the moisture. Avoid using face masks made of synthetic materials. 

  • Try using barrier cream for sensitive skin 

People with dry and sensitive skin can use a barrier cream on their face to reduce the effects of friction due to wearing face masks. The cream can be applied on the face to protect the skin from dryness and other irritants. 

Common most problems faced by health workers and the general public while wearing face masks for an extended period are as follows:

  • Red Rashes 

Reddish sore rashes on the face due to mask-induced friction is quite common. In such cases, take care not to worsen the irritation by washing the face many times over or using a harsh face wash soap. You can wash your cloth mask every day. Avoid using strong fragrances and detergents for washing. Rinse the mask well after washing. 

  • Acne 

Acne can occur because of cloth friction and humid climatic conditions. You can apply benzoyl peroxide cream before putting on the mask. You can also buy a softer and skin-friendly mask so that there is less contact-point friction. 

Wiping the acne area with a gentle cleanser face wash can also help. You can refer to your local doctor and buy prescription acne relief products or medicines if needed. Consult your doctor if you are already taking medications for acne, as some products may no longer be suitable to be used under a mask. 

  • Stubble & Beard Issues

Men may have to counter stubble and beard problems associated with face masks. Even doctors wearing heavy surgical or isolation face masks have to deal with such issues. Changing the mask type with a fine or smooth fabric mask can be an ideal solution. Men can try midday shave to maintain smooth skin and consider not growing a beard when wearing N95 masks. 

All these above-mentioned tips can help you wear face masks without worrying about skin irritations. If your skin condition is not improving or getting worse due to wearing face masks regularly, you may consider a consultation in the UAE with a renowned dermatologists available on DoctorUna.com.


About Author


DoctorUna.com launched in the United Arab Emirates in 2012, Egypt and Jordan in 2013 and recently in Kuwait in 2014. The purpose of DoctorUna is to allow patients to quickly search for doctors from across a broad range of specialties, compare them and easily book a convenient appointment. DoctorUna gives doctors access to a larger pool of patients, streamlines and better manages their appointment booking process so they can spend more time caring for patients.

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