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How CBD can help with mask-wearing related acne

How CBD can help with mask-wearing related acne

With many people reporting that wearing masks is aggravating their acne, we’re taking a look at how CBD balms and moisturisers could help get ‘maskne’ under control 

As wearing a mask becomes the norm in many workplaces, people have been sharing accounts of what healthcare workers and clinicians have known for a long time - that wearing a mask for long stretches at a time causes them to break out in acne (unaffectionately termed ‘maskne’) - a distinctive pattern of acne appearing around the mouth and nose. 'Maskne' however, does not always respond well to regular anti-acne treatments as we can't eliminate what causes it. Acne is normally caused by a mix of internal or external factors which we can change by adjusting our routine or diet. 'Maskne' is brought on by having to wear a face mask for long durations which is something that for the majority of us - particularly those classed as 'keyworkers' won't change anytime soon. 

The treatment plan, therefore, can't consist of aggressive and stripping products which drench the skin from its natural oil barrier and dry out the skin further. Being an inflammatory issue, also influenced by increased humidity and stress 'maskne' products should be gentle and bring soothing and conditioning properties to help heal the skin. CBD has been proven to work as an effective external anti-inflammatory agent, and when combined with other skin-loving ingredients we think it is exactly the thing to include in your anti - 'maskne' face care routine. 

Here are a few reasons you might consider trying CBD balms, lotions and other topicals.

What causes acne, and why can wearing masks make it worse? 

Acne is caused when excess oil, dirt and dead skin cells clog your pores. That causes a build-up of the bacteria cutibacterium acnes in the pores, causing inflammation resulting in spots, red blotches and oily skin. It’s one of the most common skin conditions in the world and can lead to feelings of anxiety and low self-esteem. When you wear a mask that wraps tightly around your face it creates a humid environment that is perfect for the development of sebum, and sweat, making it an ideal playground for bacteria. The friction and chaffing of masks can break open our pores making them even more prone to getting clogged up creating something that’s known as folliculitis.

That’s especially true if you work in an industry or profession where you might have to wear masks for long periods at a time, as is the case for healthcare and hospitality workers, among others. 

How is it usually treated? 

The methods used to treat acne generally depend on the severity - for chronic and/or severe acne, a doctor might prescribe an antibiotic to kill the bacteria at the source of it. The most popular over-the-counter options are salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide, although both have their downsides. Benzoyl peroxide can cause itching and irritation at the site of application and might not be the best option if you have sensitive skin, while salicylic acid can make your skin unusually dry. If your acne is fairly minor - as with most cases associated with ‘maskne’ - you might prefer to try something a little easier on the skin, to prevent drying it out. If you naturally have dry skin, you want to avoid products that could dry it out further which could cause itchiness and flaking. 

How does topical CBD work in treating acne? 

CBD combats acne through a number of different mechanisms, and testimonials abound of sufferers finding relief through CBD creams and balms. One of the most well-researched processes is the effect that CBD has on oil production in pores - since acne is caused in part by excess oil build-up, reducing the amount of oil produced by the sebaceous glands helps prevent breakouts. Studies suggest that CBD actively inhibits oil production from the sebaceous glands, while also having an anti-inflammatory effect on the glands themselves, making topical CBD a promising treatment for acne. 

Other common ingredients included in topical CBD products might also help prevent or reduce mask-related acne. Hemp seed oil, frequently a component of CBD topicals, has been used for years as a salve to treat acne and is commonly recommended by dermatologists. It helps to hydrate the skin, without clogging the pores; when your skin is too dry, it can begin to overproduce oil (in turn, stimulating acne). By regulating oil production, hemp seed oil helps mitigate breakouts. Hemp seed oil also has anti-inflammatory properties which can reduce tenderness and redness, as well as antibacterial properties which can help prevent future breakouts. Other ingredients often included in CBD topicals such as beeswax, aloe extract, coconut oil and shea butter each have their own anti-inflammatory and antibacterial benefits - meaning that a lot of the time with CBD topicals, you’re getting more protection than you might think. 


With all the talk about anti-inflammatories, antibacterials, antioxidants and so on, it’s easy to forget what CBD is arguably best known for - its compelling relaxation effects. One of the best ways to combat acne is to fight off stress, and CBD is sure to help with that. 


At CBD Farmacy, we have a fantastic range of CBD topicals carefully combined with a number of other skin loving ingredients. Whether you're experiencing maskne, or other skin concerns - we have everything CBD related you could need to look after yourself during these stressful times.


Biome CBD SerumMoon Mother CBD BalmKam CBD Roll on


Our Biome Face serum is infused with hemp and blue chamomile plus 21 other herbs. Anti-aging, hydrating face serum, for stand-alone use or under makeup. 

The Moon Mother CBD Balm, is a heavy and highly nourishing formula with cocoa and shea butters, beeswax and coconut oil. It gives your skin all natural goodness it needs to regenerate. 

Our handy KAM CBD roll on - is a light and quickly absorbing formula with moisturising almond and coconut oils, perfect for quick on the go application to small problem areas.  

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