Skincare and mask wearing during the pandemic
As a skincare formulator and beauty therapist, I am often asked how to tackle skincare conditions during the pandemic relating to stressed out skin and mask wearing. The most common conditions are maskne, rosacea, dehydration – all are an added stress we do not need, especially for you… our essential workers who are mask-wearing all day and looking after everybody but yourselves.
Above all else, what we need right now is practical and simple advice. Not a ten-step skincare routine that nobody can be expected to adhere to!
Here, I have put together my top tips for keeping your skin healthy in the midst of mandatory mask wearing.
😷 If you need to wear a mask all day or for extended periods of time – please use a clean mask every few hours. (In your leisure time, to prevent waste, you could have a few washable masks on rotation). The reason for this is that bacteria will grow in the steamy conditions between your face and the mask itself. Given that it’s not practical to get a new face every few hours – opt for a fresh mask instead! This will at least remove some of the bacteria, oil and sweat that inevitably builds up on your mask.
😷 No make-up. It’s warm and damp under our masks, so your skin does not need an extra layer of foundation or powder blocking up your pores.
😷 If you have any pesky skin conditions popping up under your mask or with the added stress that this pandemic is bringing, trust me that this is NOT the time to embark on a whole new skincare routine. It’s actually the complete opposite… your skin is already overwhelmed, keep it simple and cover only the essential steps.
😷 Ensure you cleanse morning and night to keep your skin clean. You’ll want to use a calming and gentle cleanser that will not strip your skin of its natural oils. It’s tempting to grab a super foaming cleanser and scrub your skin squeaky clean, however, this can cause dehydration and even stimulate oil production. What your skin needs right now is love and TLC… cleanse gently and kindly.
😷 I also think it’s super important to exfoliate very gently 2-3 times a week so that you can prevent the build-up of skin cells, oil, sweat, bacteria and make up in your pores. As mentioned, it’s warm and steamy under that mask – the perfect environment for bacteria to grow. Exfoliating will prevent the build up from causing blackheads, acne and it will also remove any dry and dehydrated skin. This means that when it’s time to moisturise, your moisturiser can sink right in without having to get through a layer of gunk first. (If you have severe acne or irritated skin, please do not exfoliate over that particular area, let it rest and heal).
😷 While you are wearing your mask… I recommend using a lighter moisturiser. Heavy moisturisers and barrier creams will just steam up and sit in your pores. You to need hydrate and nourish your skin without it feeling clogged or greasy under there. Skin cannot heal without moisture, so make sure the moisturiser has been fully absorbed before putting on your mask.
My Harmony and Balance face moisturiser has been overwhelmingly popular since the pandemic began. Containing neroli and hyaluronic acid, it’s calming, antibacterial and lightly hydrating… it’s like it was made for the pandemic!
😷 After a stressful day, and when it’s finally time to hit the hay…. It’s also the time to treat your skin with something extra. Sleeping is healing as you will all know. So – pop your favourite serum, oil or night cream on and let it work it’s magic while you catch up on your well earned zzzzz’s.
😷 It’s also super important to look after your overall health. Reduce stress where possible, remain active, stay hydrated and eat the rainbow of healthy and non-processed food to help your overall health and to nourish your skin from within.
😷 Feeling overwhelmed with all that? Here’s the quick rundown:
- Cleanse with a gentle cleanser, do not ‘strip’ your skin
- Exfoliate two to three times a week… this is essential
- Use a light, non-clogging face moisturiser
- No make-up under your mask
- Use a clean/new mask every few hours
- Look after your overall physical and emotional well-being.
😷 You’re welcome to contact me with any questions at all. I am here to help and it would be my absolute pleasure to give you, our nursing and midwife heroes, any advice you need. I am also available most evenings for a quick zoom if you’d like a personal skin consult. You can contact me here and take a look at my website.
This article was provided by Seven Islands Skincare.