The term “Corneotherapy” was first used to help skin problems by an American dermatologist Professor A. M. Kligman, in the mid-1960s. It’s a term for the repair and maintenance of the skin barrier.
These studies showed that the top layer of your skin is vital to being healthy. It protects you and helps keep out any harmful things from getting inside. This is because contact with the outside world is via this top layer of skin (or stratum corneum), which links the inside and outer worlds of our adaptive immune system.
Histamine is released by cells in response to injury and inflammatory reactions. It prolongs and makes inflammation worse. This makes capillaries fragile, which means they can break easier.
Corneotherapy improves barrier disorders and inflamed skin. Instead of adopting a band-aid approach, it’s an outside-in approach and addresses the root cause-analysis of skin issues.
True Corneotherapy allows customizing products and ingredients that mimic the skin structure, directed to correction and restoration of the skin barrier.
In New Zealand, the climate can be very regional and harsh on the skin, as we tend to have a lot of wind, sun, and water. In Marlborough, I see much premature aging induced by the sun. It results in pigmentation, dry skin, and a loss of collagen, so I focus on age management a lot. At the same time, I experience skin disorders such as rosacea, perioral dermatitis, and acne. Often these have worsened after trial and error of products and treatments. A skin assessment helps to figure out what’s going on and how to treat it.
We see Maskne as The New Skin Issue On The Rise.
The acid mantle is a delicate balance of lipids and comprises the microbiome and other components of the skin’s delicate matrix. When you wear a mask, there is an increased chance of acne because of the obstruction.
PPE needs to be fitted correctly on the skin, which will press against your skin for many hours. Breathing when wearing PPE might alter the pH level on “your” skin. This can induce skin problems from redness and discomfort to flare-ups such as acne, eczema, rosacea, and perioral dermatitis.
Corneotherapy is an outside-in methodology.
To illustrate this, I’ll use one of my favorite analogies.
When a roof is damaged and leaking water, you want to fix it as quickly as possible, so no further damage is done. Once the rooftop is fixed, you can then improve your house. You don’t want to repair your home before fixing your roof since if you do so after it rains again, the water will flow through the ceiling and cause further damage!
We can easily transpose the analogy to the skin. The skin barrier’s damaged corneocytes are similar to a roof that leaks and are no longer functional. When the skin is damaged, it will ‘leak’ water from the inside [fast transepidermal waterloss] and not retain moisture.
You would want to repair the corneocytes before improving the underlying structures and making changes on the inside of the skin.
In true corneotherapy, you repair your skin from the outside to make it healthier and stronger. Corneotherapy will calm inflammation, restore homeostasis, and improve the skin barrier function.
A skin evaluation helps us to find the root cause of skin problems. Stress and nutrition also affect your skin and exacerbate skin problems like acne, eczema, dryness, perioral dermatitis, and pigmentation.
When you have got a cystic pimple, it is most likely not due to your mask, but you could have a stressful situation in your life, are overindulged in comfort food, or experience a hormonal change that causes acne.
There are a few things you can do to help resolve this. Skincare is not one-size-fits-all. It would be best if you had a good skin assessment and were open to discussing the best approach for your individual needs. This works better than trial and error with products, as many of these issues are chronic, so you want to get it right from the start.
Corneotherapy brings a better understanding of how products work on a deeper level and how it affects skin function, rather than just a cosmetic approach that can fail long-term.
Skin consultations can take place at the clinic or via video consultation. I use the Observ 520, a diagnostic device in the clinic, to reveal skin issues. It takes the customer on a journey to discover their skin and visualize the characteristics in the various layers of their skin.
I take a very holistic approach to skincare, and it is crucial to look at the whole person to find solutions. It’s worth noting that maskne is a broad term for dermatitis, acne, or dryness affecting the face, including other issues such as perioral dermatitis.
In this case, I would recommend anti-inflammatory products
and support the formation of ceramide one within the skin.
Dermaviduals DMS Cleansing Milk is a gentle cleanser free of common preservatives, colours, fragrances, silicones, mineral oils, and emulsifiers. It’s excellent for rebalancing and restoring hydration levels in the skin after cleansing.
EGCG Liposomes (epigallocatechin gallate) The product is an intensive renewal serum that includes green tea. It promotes keratinization, cell development, and envelope formation. It strengthens the cells and encourages new ones to come out.
Liposome Concentrate Plus [azelaic acid]. It is a 5a-reductase inhibitor [DHT blocker —5α-Reductase is most known for converting testosterone into the more potent dihydrotestosterone] that will help reduce acne, decrease congestion, and clear blemishes caused by rosacea and perioral dermatitis.
Vitamin B Liposome Concentrate improves barrier function by increasing ceramide and free fatty acid levels. This liposomal serum benefits acne-prone skin, improving skin tone, texture, and skin barrier defense.
The anti-inflammatory effects of the Boswellia Nanoparticles (frankincense extract) are well documented. Boswellia contains many essential fatty acids, beneficial for rosacea, perioral dermatitis, psoriasis, and acne inflammation.
Kiwi Seed Oil Nanoparticles are a great source of polyunsaturated essential fatty acids and have shown anti-inflammatory properties. Kiwi Seed Oil is frequently used to treat rosacea, perioral dermatitis, and acne.
With maskne – I recommend staying away from certain ingredients and re-visit your skincare regime when it comes to ingredients or products.
Makeup lovers might want to have a break-up with makeup, or at least minimize and opt for lighter mineral foundations. Heavy formulations in foundations and concealers can clog up pores.
Minimize your use of primers, as these can also be pore-cloggers.
Stop over-cleansing your skin; avoid common preservatives, colours, fragrances, silicones, mineral oils, and frequent emulsifiers in products.
It’s the worst thing you do for your skin, as it will strip off your essential oils and make it dryer and flakier.
By using skincare that mimics the skin, the barrier defense systems become stronger, and trans-epidermal water loss is reduced, enabling optimal skin health and function. It helps keep skin problems like acne, rosacea, and perioral dermatitis under control by supporting the clients’ skin balance and health.
Inflammation usually exacerbates maskne. Therefore therapies that include anti-inflammatory properties are recommended to calm it down and reduce redness. LED light treatments and Enzyme treatments can both be used to target inflammation and redness. Using Dermaviduals as a corneotherapeutic tool — a skincare range I use in my clinic, I create bespoke treatments, blending and customizing actives and ingredients to mineral powders and makeup. Qi beauty is a beauty tool meant to help with all types of skin issues, including health, aesthetic, and inflammatory conditions. It’s highly soothing and enables natural healing reactions without causing harm or discomfort. Qi beauty aids in the treatment of common skin diseases such as acne, hormonal breakouts, congestion, rosacea, premature aging
Maskne can be caused by many factors such as stress, lack of sleep, or lifestyle habits. Stress can produce oxidative stress. As a consequence of this, lipid peroxidation occurs. Lipid peroxidation is the process by which free radicals steal electrons from cell lipids, causing cellular damage. Oxidation of cell membrane lipids might lead to acne, rosacea, and perioral dermatitis.
Implementing a pause, addressing stress levels, sleep habits, and establishing a high-quality lifestyle can all assist maskne and one’s self-perception.
Some tips that can help reduce acne and breakout are drinking lots of water, using a gentle cleanser on your face, and always removing makeup before you sleep. Plenty of restful sleep to help make our skin look fresh and energized.
It depends on how severe the condition is and what stage they are at in their journey. If maskne is severe, consult a skin expert immediately.
My top tips I’d recommend dealing with maskne:
Avoid over-cleansing and scrubbing your face with anything that might irritate the skin more and make it worse.
Wash fabric masks using unscented, hypoallergenic laundry detergent, then let it dry completely.
Toss disposable masks after each use
The American Academy of Dermatology Association recommends removing your mask for 15 minutes every 4 hours to help give the skin a break.
Wash your face after wearing a mask and apply a corneotherapeutic skincare. I recommend Dermaviduals that use skin-identical ingredients.
Drink plenty of water to help keep your skin hydrated
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