Covid-19 | Skin Care for Front Line Workers Wearing Face Masks
These are unprecedented times.
Face Masks have become the new normal. I don't mean the self-care ones, unfortunately, but the ones that keep us from spreading our germs to those we are caring for, work with or serve.
Face Masks are causing a lot of skin issues around the nose and mouth and I've received a number of questions from my nursing clients on how to ease their discomfort. I've done a bit of research and hopefully this article will help a bit.
Those who have to wear surgical masks or N-95 respirators are really suffering skin wise. The tension and constant friction on the skin can cause some real damage. It's recommended to apply a thin layer of barrier cream 30 minutes prior to putting the mask on to protect the skin as much as possible. A traditional well known barrier cream would be Aquaphor. A more natural alternative is shea butter - both options are non-comedogenic.
Homemade cotton masks which are breathable can still cause skin issues as your breath is essentially trapped in the area of your nose and mouth resulting in a warm, moist area - a perfect breeding ground for bacteria which can result in either acne and/or redness and inflammation.
Skin Care Recommendations:
After removing your mask, wash hands thoroughly and then wash your face with a gentle cleanser. Avoid using any harsh cleansers or scrubs at this time. After cleansing, keep the area well moisturized (yes, even if you are suffering from breakouts).
Tips to keep your skin barrier as strong as possible:
- Avoid wearing makeup on the covered area.
- Use moisturizing formulas with probiotics, niacinimide and ceramides, as well as peptides to fortify skin.
- Limit damage by using antioxidant rich oils that are high in Vitamin E like Pomegranate Seed Oil, Sea Buckthorne Berry Oil, Cranberry Seed Oil, Red Raspberry Seed Oil
- Repair skin barrier with oils high in fatty acids like Rosehip Seed Oil, Grapeseed Oil and and Sunflower oil
- Ditch the harsh scrubs - your skin does not need any more irritation right now.
- Give treatment products a rest like Retinol and AHA's as they do thin the skin. You can still use them on your forehead though!
- Avoid homemade masks made out of synthetic material.
- Do not use harsh cleansers with SLS or fragrance as these ingredients will disrupt your skin's pH balance.
- Stay well hydrated and eat the rainbow of fruits and veggies.
My Top Covid-19 Skincare Picks
- French Girl Fleur de Neroli Charcoal Face Wash - a gentle but effective cream cleanser especially formulated for sensitive skin.
- French Girl Fleur de Rose - a gentle low-foaming gel cleanser for all skin types.
- Graydon Face Foam - the perfect choice for oily skin, gentle and pH balanced.
- French Girl Neroli Creme Fraiche - hydrates with aloe, floral distillates and glycerin and create a protective barrier with oils, butters and waxes.
- Leahlani's Bless Balm - shea and cocoa butter based this is the ultimate clean beauty barrier cream pick. This is a water free formula so it will feel oily on the skin but smells amazing.
- Graydon's Super Sensitive Skin Stuff - It's non-irritating and includes ceramides to lock moisture in.
- Graydon's Putty - If your skin is red and irritated this is the ultimate skin soother.
Unfortunately, there is no curbside pick-up at this time but you can order online anytime and as soon as we are able - your goodies will be packed and ready for pick-up!