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Is Your Skin Acting Up From Wearing Masks For Too Long?

These anti-blemish serums will nip things in the bud.

If wearing masks during this pandemic has caused you to break out on the nose, cheeks, and chin, you’re not alone. These areas, which are prone to excess sebum in the first place, can be irritated from the friction created between your mask and the skin as well the humidity caused by your breath, to create an ideal environment for bacteria to thrive. To combat the zits that have appeared from the prolonged duration of wearing masks, we’ve sussed out some anti-blemish serums that can either target the pimple-causing bacteria or help with skin resurfacing to clear pores to reduce the likelihood of inflammation.

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This article first appeared on Harper’s Bazaar Singapore.


Vinopure Skin Perfecting Serum, $62, Caudalie
Salicylic acid is a common ingredient in anti-blemish skincare, and this serum contains a high concentration of it to clarify pores. The serum is also formulated to reduce sebum production and gentle enough for use on sensitive skin. Anti-Blemish Solutions Clinical Clearing Gel, $52, Clinique
This can be applied on areas prone to pimples or as a spot treatment to soothe and speed up the healing process. Salicylic acid cleans out the pores and gently exfoliates away surface skin which clogs pores. Dynaspot, $55, Eve Lom
Formulated to target spots, this product contains salicylic acid to clear pores, tea tree oil, which has great antiseptic properties, along with zinc oxide and yarrow to reduce sebum production and camomile to soothe redness. The product itself applies as a universal skin tone tint to even out redness, suitable for use both under or over makeup. Banish Stick, $41, Indie Lee
This clear solution is a blend of anti-blemish ingredients like witch hazel, zinc sulfate and salicylic and glycolic acids, which simultaneously reduces the inflammation, and speed up pimple healing. Although it comes with its own applicator wand, we highly recommend using a fresh Q-tip to dot on the product, instead of reusing the wand to avoid cross-contamination. Breakout Control Targeted Acne Spot Treatment, $52, Kiehl's
Unlike most products in this article, this product does not rely on salicylic acid to treat pimples. Instead, mineral sulphur helps to reduce the number of breakouts without drying skin out, while vitamin B3 helps to reduce post-acne scarring. Spot Remover Acne Treatment Gel, $34, Origins
The gel contains one and a half per cent salicylic acid to clear pores, while ingredients like caffeine and red algae help to calm inflammation. Simply dot over existing pimples to speed up its healing. Blemish Control ,$80, Re:erth
While salicylic acid is effective at clearing out pores and reducing sebum production, it can also cause dryness and flaking of skin. This product uses lysozyme and colostrum to eliminate acne-causing bacteria underneath the skin, reducing the occurrence of pimples. Water-Soluble vitamin A also improves skin texture, leaving skin smooth and bouncy. Blemish Rescue Oil - Tamanu And Salicylic, $69, Votary
Containing two per cent salicylic acid and tamanu oil, which contains anti-inflammatory properties, this oil helps skin bounce back from blemishes quickly. Pores are cleared out to prevent further congestion, and skin redness is reduced.