We all know by now that wearing a mask helps stop the spread of the coronavirus, but while ensuring we stay healthy on the inside, the required face coverings can do a number on our skin. This added layer along with the daily stresses we face in life –even more so during this global pandemic – all factor into new breakouts and skin irritation. “We are all under a tremendous amount of stress,” Dr. Goldfaden says. “When stress levels rise, the body produces more stress hormones and these hormones cause over oil production and thus a high chance of a breakout.”
A change in our daily diet or increased alcohol consumption (no judgment!) can also play roles in those new blemishes appearing. “We are eating different types of foods than we may be used to; we are perhaps drinking more alcohol, exercising less, sleeping less –all of these factors can affect the skin,” he notes. “Summertime heat, sunscreen and masks all breed bacteria, which will cause breakouts.”
The stresses in our life should be dealt with accordingly, and “finding ways to alleviate stress is very important,” but skincare should not be contributing to your woes. Below, Dr. Goldfaden shares some tips and tricks worth following to keep your complexion clear and glowing under that mask.
With the summer heat and COVID still very much present, what are the best practices to prevent breakouts while wearing a mask?
“Bacteria and pollution can both cause acne. A daily skincare regimen is imperative for clean, clear skin. Always wash your face when you take your mask off as sweat is a breeding ground for bacteria and breakouts. Exfoliation is imperative to ward off acne. Exercising and sweating can help as it gets circulation and blood flow going. Do not touch your face or pick. These are two of the worst things you can do for the health of your skin. Our hands are loaded with bacteria and germs which then transfer to the skin when face touching occurs. Bacteria causes breakouts and sometimes rashes. Bacteria, viruses and germs also live under nailbeds, so make sure you keep your nails clean. Touching the face, nose, eyes and mouth is extremely dangerous right now due to the spread of Covid-19. If you must touch your face, wash your hands with hot water and soap before or just wait for the shower.”
How often should someone wash their face?
“At least twice a day. Since we are wearing masks, it’s a good idea to up that number.”
Which cleanser do you recommend during this time?
“Our Pure Start Cleanser”
You mention exfoliating above. How necessary is it?
“It’s the most crucial part of a healthy skincare regimen. Exfoliation unplugs clogged pores and allows for the release of natural skin oils. Regular exfoliation also helps to maintain open pores, decrease pore size, minimize many types of superficial scarring and ward off bacteria which causes breakouts and rashes.”
Before putting on a mask, should people with oily/acne-prone skin apply anything as a protective layer?
“The skin should be clean with a daily anti-oxidant serum on. If you’re acne-prone to begin with, our Detox Hydrating Gel may be a good barrier to put on any trouble areas before applying your mask. You could also use our Brightening Elixir.”
What do you recommend if you have dry skin?
“Our MIST RX will be soothing and is oil free, so no breakouts. It’s also good for environmentally-stressed skin.”
What is the best mask material for these varied skin types?
“No mask is going to be perfect. A mask with a disposable or washable filter is the safest. More important than the actual material is that you are washing your mask. The mask can hold bacteria, germs, dust, virus and environmental pollutants.”
Alisandra Puliti is an NYC-based entertainment journalist with 15 years of experience. The Penn State University graduate has worked in the celebrity weekly world and most recently launched and grew the US entities for HELLO! + HOLA! Media. Throughout her tenure, she has attended red carpet events such as the Golden Globes, covered the backstage action at the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show and interviewed Hollywood’s A-list and royalty. (Justin Timberlake and Jennifer Lopez being among her favorites!) She has also learned the tips and tricks of the stars’ skincare regimens along the way. As for herself, she swears by Goldfaden’s Doctor’s Scrub and Pure Start cleanser. Follow her travels and outings on Instagram and Twitter @apuliti.