One year later, and you still need to wear a face mask.

Cover your nose and mouth. And take care of your skin, please.

With March a few days away, two things come to mind: a year later, and we are still in the middle of a global pandemic that they said would be passed by June 2020. Second, I am not sure if I can see a world where we no longer have to wear face masks. As much as I dreaded wearing them when the recommendations and restrictions first came about, I now moonlight as a face mask officer. Whenever I go out with a friend, my first question is not “how are you?” It is either “where is your mask?” or “did you forget your mask?” And if everyone else wants to lie about it, I can’t - I hate this for me. In any event, safety matters! If wearing my damn mask will help keep small businesses, restaurants, nail salons and spas, and countries open, I am all in. 

Of the myriad challenges that COVID-19 brought to this already challenged world, learning how to take care of your skin while wearing a face mask was one of them. By June last year, many people experienced a dreadful skin issue now referred to as maskne. This acne breakout occurs from using soiled, unsanitary face masks. A drawback of wearing a reusable face mask is that it harbors dirt, sweat, and other grime. That creates a breeding ground for bacteria that causes acne. There are many skin care treatments that can fight this incurable skin disease. But, let's focus on face masks today. No, not the one that prevents the spread of COVID-19, but the one that you can buy at your local pharmacy, Ulta, Sephora, or even Masktini.

6 benefits of using a face mask

There are many types of face masks on the market. Some face masks hydrate your skin, while others exfoliate it. Then there are face masks that brighten your skin so that it glows like you visited a spa. In the spirit of skinimalism, you should choose a face mask based on your skin issue or goal. I prefer face masks that exfoliate my skin because I struggle with blackheads and comedones. 

Other benefits of using face masks include: 

  • Tighter pores 
  • Faded dark spots 
  • A more even skin tone 

Fading dark spots and creating a more even skin tone takes time, so you have to be consistent when using a face mask. Yet, a face mask such as Indian Healing Clay tightens your pores in one use and exfoliates your skin too!

What are the different types of face masks

Clay, sulfur, or mud masks

As mentioned here, there are three main types of face masks. They are: 

  • Clay, sulfur, or mud masks 
  • Sheet masks 
  • Overnight renewal masks 

Face masks vary by brand but their active ingredients tell you what to expect. If I had to guess, I would say that clay, sulfur, and mud masks are the most popular kinds. With this category, you will find DIY face masks such as avocado, papaya, or yogurt. How else would you categorize mashed fruit?

If you have combination or oily skin, a clay mask removes the excess oil secreted by your sebaceous (oil) glands. Clay masks also prevent milder forms of acne such as whiteheads and blackheads. Like its counterpart, a sulfur face mask dries out your skin and removes any excess oil build-up. Oil build-up is a primary reason for acne breakouts, so you should see fewer when using a sulfur face mask. If you guessed that mud has the same benefits as clay and sulfur, you guessed right! Clay and sulfur contain similar minerals as mud masks. Essentially, they are mud masks! So, you can expect a mud mask to:

  • Remove impurities 
  • Slough off dead skin cells
  • Make skin appear cleaner and brighter 
  • Tighten your pores 
  • Even out rough skin texture

Sheet masks

If you follow the 12-step Korean skincare routine, you are bound to use a sheet face mask every night! Many sheet face masks on the market boast soothing, hydrating, and brightening properties. All sheet masks hydrate and moisturize your skin unless they contain alcohol. That’s because their packaging solution keeps them moist until they expire or you buy them. When using a sheet face mask, keep it on for 10-15 minutes or as long as directed. Rub any excess solution leftover into your skin or wipe it off with a warm face towel. Either way, your skin should feel smooth and supple.

Overnight renewal face masks

This one is my favorite! I sleep more than most adults that I know. Sleep is a priority in my life. One of the reasons I love sleep so much is because of the wonders it does for my skin. During sleep, your body goes into overdrive to replenish itself. If you established the proper skincare routine, expect to wake up with refreshed skin. The proper skincare routine should leave your skin clearer, smoother, softer, or brighter!

Masktini’s Night Ranger Overnight Renewal Mask is the perfect anti-aging face mask. It has a small amount of retinol, a powerful anti-aging skincare ingredient. Retinol speeds up cell turnover.  That is essential in renewing your skin and smoothing out fine lines and wrinkles. Apart from its anti-aging benefits, Night Ranger hydrates and evens out rough skin texture. It’s a win-win for your skin!

How often should you use a face mask

When it comes to global health, you should wear a face mask every time you step outside. But we are not talking about health precautions, are we? There is no set amount of time for all face masks. Again, if you ascribe to skinimalism, you should do as little as you can with your skincare products. Skinimalism asks you to give your skin time to go through the motions. It also encourages you to use skincare products that are specific to your skin issues. That said, always follow the instructions provided with your products. Also, pay attention to how your skin reacts to your use of a product. If you have sensitive skin, too much of anything can irritate your skin. Yet, people with less sensitive skin and higher thresholds may bend the rules. That is not me encouraging you to color out the lines, by the way. Know your skin and listen to everything it says because it understands you best. 

What are your favorite face masks to use? We’d love to hear from you in the comment section below. In the meantime, follow us on Instagram and tag us in your best #selfcare face masks selfies. Until next time!