It's a thing.
Like many, I started this journey thinking "Ok, I'll wear a mask for a month or so and hopefully things will have calmed down." Because of this short-term view, my mask hygiene was pretty poor. Now it's about 6 months in and masks have become a part of our sartorial choices...
Because it's Summer...
and because these protective pieces are on our faces for hours at a time, we need to make a conscious effort to keep our masks, and our faces, extra clean. The easy thing to do is grab disposable masks, but we all know the dangers of disposable items. You've surely noticed an influx in all of those masks on the ground, adding to cigarette butts and who knows what else. Besides being gross, they can also entrap our furry friends and cause them problems (eep!).
The second easiest thing...
you can do is invest in reusable, fabric masks. I'm lucky enough to have crafty friends who have made some for me but have also made some purchases as well. Even with 10+ day-to-day masks and 6 running bandannas in rotation, keeping up with washing is not always easy, but is important.
No matter the mask,
things still get... I'm gonna say it... moist in there. With sweat, breath, and dirt, your new face adornment becomes a hotbed for germs and can attribute to acne. So, what can we do to ensure healthy, happy skin?
Choose one mask to wear per day and set it aside at the end of the day. I have magnet hooks on the back of my front door to hang them so I know which have been used most recently and which are new.
Stay on top of washing that face. Use a gentle cleanser each morning and evening. This one is nothing new, you're probably already doing this.
Follow up with a toner, serum, moisturizer combo to ensure your skin stays healthy and hydrated. I've been using our soon-to-be newest product as a toner lately. While it's not made for faces, it is meant for sensitive skin and my face is happier for it. After, I pat in some serum to lock in moisture (my S.O. makes fun of me every single time), then add a light moisturizer in the morning or a light retinol-infused moisturizer in the evening.
Wash your masks!
It doesn't make sense for most of us to throw them in the washing machine every day, but once you get through half of your rotation, hand wash your masks in the sink, letting them soak a bit and rinsing thoroughly, then lay flat to dry. I like to use a sport wash to ensure all of the dirt and oil is removed from my masks.
Et voila. Your face will thank you.
P.S., Don't forget sunscreen.
(img source: linenbee.com)