Mask-acne… it’s a thing
Masks are now the new hot accessories but wearing a mask for hours a day can block the pores of your skin and put you at risk of developing acne. As healthcare providers, we know the best way to treat acne is to prevent it before it happens.
So, since mask wearing is not likely to go away for a while, it seems important to figure out how to best protect our faces and stop the pimples that masks can cause.
So what causes acne?
Acne and pimples are caused by a number of things including the health of your pores and how much oil and keratin they produce, your hormone balance and the health of your gut. The bacteria that live on our skin can also play a significant part in the development of acne.
Inflammation is also a key player in the development of pimples. Our skin is a direct reflection of the foods you feed it; the more inflammatory foods you eat, the more likely you will have skin issues.
Did you know your skin is a detox organ?
Our bodies have six organs of detox: the lungs, liver, lymph, kidneys, large intestines and the skin. Our skin is our biggest organ of elimination, working with the other organs of detox to remove waste from the blood and the body. When there is congestion in the other organs of detox, the skin tries to pick up the slack by pushing toxins out through our pores. In fact our skin can push out as much as 2 pounds of toxic waste a day through our sweat!
What are some simple things you can do to help prevent acne:
- Wash you face mask after wearing using a non-toxic soap or detergent.
- Keep your mask dry. Moisture builds up behind the mask making it a total breeding ground for bacteria, so if you talk a lot with a mask on, you may want to change it often during the day.
- Wearing masks made of natural fibers can help. Masks made of silk are less likely to cause pimples.
- Ditch gluten: Gluten is inflammatory in everyone, so stopping gluten can reduce inflammation in the body, protect the gut and stop more toxins from leaking into the blood stream.
- Stop eating dairy. The consumption of cow dairy has long been associated with acne. Cow dairy is NOT a health food, it is full of hormones which may contribute to acne and is very inflammatory in the body.
- Kick the sugar and processed food habit. Both sugar and highly processed foods have been shown to make many skin conditions worse, including premature aging.
- Drink water!
Natural skin solutions
Supplements that support great looking skin include:
- High dose probiotics rebalance the gut microbiome: pick ones with 225, 350, or 500 billion CFU
- Fish Oils and Evening Primrose Oil are anti-inflammatory and support cell structure and barrier function
- Vitamin E fights off free radicals and helps to protect the skin
- Vitamin D helps heal tissues
- Methylated B vitamins help support detoxification pathways, protecting the skin from hormones that can make acne worse
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Dr. Amy Reidhead
Dr. Reidhead is a double board certified Chiropractic Physician and Family Nurse Practitioner. She is also a Fellow of the International Academy of Medical Acupuncture and holds a Bachelor of Science in both Nursing and Human Biology. She has spent the past 25 years honing her skills as a functional and integrative medical provider in Boulder, Colorado.