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This $8 face wash helped clear up my maskne — a.k.a. acne caused by wearing a mask

Ellie Conley
·2-min read

Our team is dedicated to finding and telling you more about the products and deals we love. If you love them too and decide to purchase through the links below, we may receive a commission. Pricing and availability are subject to change.

Almost a year into the global pandemic, my fabric face mask collection is quite extensive. I have one to match just about every outfit — some for working out and some for regular use. However, no matter the style, face masks can cause my skin to break out.

I tried spot treatments and going makeup-free, but there’s only one face wash that really helped clear up my maskne (a.k.a. mask acne). It’s the Bioré Deep Pore Charcoal Cleanser.

After using the $8 face wash — found at Ulta, Bed Bath & Beyond and in most drugstores — every morning and most nights for the past few weeks, my face has been spot-free. It lathers well with water and leaves my skin with a clean, tingly feeling, thanks to added menthol.

Shop: Bioré Deep Pore Charcoal Cleanser, $7.99

Credit: Ulta
Credit: Ulta

Also available at Bed Bath & Beyond for $6.99.

I’ve never had really bad acne, mostly hormonal cystic acne that pops up from time to time. But I have sensitive, combination skin — many skincare face masks and moisturizers have made me break out in the past. But this cleanser hasn’t.

In fact, there’s actually another version of this face wash specifically made for acne that includes salicylic acid, but the regular deep cleaning face wash has worked wonders without drying or breaking out my skin.

Shop: Bioré Charcoal Acne Clearing Cleanser, $6.99

Credit: Bed Bath & Beyond
Credit: Bed Bath & Beyond

Bioré Deep Pore Charcoal Cleanser contains activated charcoal (as you could have probably guessed from the name) to draw out and trap makeup, dirt and other impurities.

About five years ago, activated charcoal grew in popularity for its detoxification abilities. Suddenly, it was in skincare, trendy food, whitening toothpaste and more.

But activated charcoal is different from regular charcoal. It’s treated by manufacturers to develop sponge-like pores, which is what helps the charcoal “trap” impurities, according to GoodRx. In fact, the medical community has used charcoal to remove toxins from the body in cases of accidental poisoning or overdose for a long time.

In skincare, the idea is that charcoal detoxifies skin by trapping and removing dirt and oil. However, there still needs to be more research to totally back up these claims

Either way, the Bioré Deep Pore Charcoal Cleanser works for me. It brightens my skin for the day ahead, even if I do hide it behind a mask.

If you enjoyed this article, read about these three ways to wear a mask without irritating your ears.

More from In The Know:

How to prevent and treat mask acne

These Black-owned face masks are the most comfortable I’ve worn to date

Kitsch’s cotton face masks are actually comfortable — snag 3 for $13

3 dermatologist-approved skincare products that are trending on TikTok

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