Maskne /mask-nee/ : The Struggle is Real

19 January 2022


What caused it?
It is likely a disorder of hair follicle occlusion and directly related to increased duration of mask wear :

  • Mechanical stress due to pressure and friction
  • Microbiome imbalance due to heat, pH and moisture
  • Tropical climates and outdoor exposure (increased sweating) are risk factors for acne-susceptible populations

How to manage?
Special consideration for skin care should include:

  • To wash the face 2 times a day with gentle cleansers
  • To apply oil-controlling moisturizers
  • To avoid strong products with salicylic acid, sulfur, α-hydroxy acids, and retinoids that could predispose to irritant contact dermatitis under occlusion
  • To wear light make up or avoid make up
  • To visit dermatologist for severe conditions 


1. Teo W. Diagnostic and management considerations for “maskne” in the era of COVID-19. Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology. 2021;84(2):520-521. 2. Kosasih, L., 2020. MASKNE: Mask-Induced Acne Flare During Coronavirus Disease-19. What is it and How to Manage it?.Open Access Macedonian Journal of Medical Sciences, 8(T1), pp.411-415.