Goodbye Maskne and Dry Hands: Healthy Skincare Routine During the Pandemic

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While we are in the midst of a global pandemic and people are adapting to the new routine, companies offering skincare services need to halt their businesses in the meantime. This is necessary to follow social distancing measures and prevent the spread of COVID-19. Along with this, it also became difficult to buy hygiene products as businesses are making necessary adjustments to ensure everyone’s safety.

Skin care is an important part of self-care and well-being. Under normal circumstances, people would flock to wellness centers to experience facial treatment benefits and address their skincare concerns. But in this time of the pandemic, health organizations are urging people to wear face masks and wash hands to prevent COVID-19. This resulted in plenty of skin concerns, from rashes, acne, irritation, and dryness.

Although it might be difficult to set up an appointment at your favorite skincare center, it is still important to keep your skin glowing and healthy while at home. After all, healthy skin reflects overall wellness. Here are some skincare changes you can do to counteract skincare issues this pandemic.

Facial care

If you are an employee required to work during a pandemic, chances are, you have to wear a mask throughout the entire workday. These include workers offering essential services, such as healthcare workers, retail stores, restaurants, and salons. While wearing a mask has been very difficult for most people, we have to make sacrifices to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

While wearing masks has been very helpful, wearing them constantly leads to “maskne” (mask acne) or skin chafing by the ears, cheeks, chin, and nose. In worse cases, some people acquire rashes, itchiness, and skin inflammation. The constant wearing of masks creates damp or sweaty conditions along the surface of the skin. As sweat and dirt accumulate, it can lead to acne and other skin problems.

There are plenty of solutions to minimize skin complications caused by wearing masks. You can start by adopting a daily skincare routine. Before wearing a mask, clean your face with a facial cleansing product fit for your skin type. Moisturize the skin as soon as it dries to maintain a moisturized and supple skin. For the moisturizer, look for non-comedogenic products to prevent clogging of the pores. Repeat the process after taking off the mask.

Also, avoid using products containing petrolatum. It is the main ingredient used in ointments and heavy-duty creams, such as lip products, petroleum jelly, diaper creams, and moisturizers. Applying petrolatum in the skin will counteract the function of the masks, such as N95. But for those with oily skin, a water-soluble moisturizer provides enough hydration to keep it oil-free.

Another way is to apply barrier ointment. It contains zinc oxide to relieve or prevent skin problems caused by friction or pressure from wearing masks. Apply a thin coating behind the ears or nose bridge to protect and soothe the skin. Zinc oxide also serves as a skin protectant to treat severe skin issues, such as chapped skin and diaper rashes.

Applying a bandage also helps in treating injuries by placing it between the mask and pressure points of the skin. Consult the pharmacist or dermatologist to know the best dressings or bandages with cooling relief and ideal for everyday use.

For those with blisters, prevent it by regular cleaning and applying antibiotic ointment. A bandage also serves as a protective barrier for the affected area. But once acne develops, make sure to cleanse your face daily. Use a moisturizer with water-soluble properties and acne solution products containing salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide. As much as possible, avoid touching, squeezing, and popping pimples as it worsens the infection and inflammation of the area.

Hand care

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Your hands are one of the prime carriers of the COVID-19 virus. That is why you need to keep them clean and sanitized. While health organizations recommend regular handwashing, doing it frequently will wash out natural oils, resulting in dry and cracked skin.

To keep your hands smooth while free from any virus and germs, avoid washing them with warm water since it causes skin damage. You may also get rid of antibacterial cleansers containing fragrance chemicals since they irritate the skin. When washing hands, use hand soap and lukewarm or cool water. Afterward, use a fragrance-free, hypoallergenic moisturizer or lightweight creams.

Professional treatment

When skin problems get worse, never abandon the mask and handwashing. These things are important health measures to stay protected against COVID-19. If your skin develops severe symptoms, such as bleeding, infection, and other serious reactions, consult a dermatologist quickly. Remember that damaged skin requires more than a home remedy.

Given the realities of the current social climate, it is important to make ourselves a priority. Following healthy skincare practices is a great way to keep ourselves in check and maintain a self-care routine.

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