You May Be Getting Zits Inside Your Nose Because Of Maskne. Here's What To Do

mbg Beauty and Lifestyle Senior Editor By Alexandra Engler
mbg Beauty and Lifestyle Senior Editor
Alexandra Engler is the Beauty and Lifestyle Senior Editor. She received her journalism degree from Marquette University, graduating first in the department.
Person Wearing Face Mask During Coronavirus

There's a very, very annoying spot where you can get zits: inside your nose. (I can practically hear the groans.) These pesky breakouts creep up, causing tender bumps in a very delicate area. Plus: They are very tricky to treat, as you can't really spot treat them the way you might a pimple on your forehead or chin—no charcoal mask or astringent tonics, here. It's inside your nose after all. 

Recently, too, we wrote about getting breakouts inside your nostrils. In it, we noted that one of your best courses of action was not to touch the area or fuss with it if you have a cold or some such. This is because the most common reasons for getting zits here, according to derms, is that the pores in your nose clog from mucus or dirt and debris from fingers. 

However, you may also be getting them here for another very specific reason: Your mask. Yes, just as your mask may be contributing to "maskne" on your chin and around your mouth, it's likely causing an uptick in breakouts in this area too. 

Masks may be causing breakouts in your nose: Here's why.

So if you are wearing a mask correctly, that means it's covering your nose. "The occlusive nature of a protective mask creates a humid and warm environment under the mask, which can lead to increased sebum and sweat. And this can lead to irritation, inflammation, and breakouts," says board-certified dermatologist Hadley King, M.D. And unfortunately, the area that a mask covers—nose, mouth, and chin—are areas that tend to break out more anyway. So if you are an acne-prone individual, you may be dealing with the condition a lot more now. 

And, yep, you have pores in your nose too. "There are pores present in the skin just inside the nose, so it is possible for one of these pores to clog, and this can result in a pimple," she says. So if you were never one to get zits here, and all of a sudden are getting them quite frequently; this likely is the reason why.

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What to do about zits inside your nose.

Of course, pimples are no excuse to stop wearing a mask. Yes, acne is annoying (take it from someone who has had decades of experience with the condition), but the alternative to not wearing a mask is worse. Masks are an important part of dealing with COVID-19 and lessening the spread. 

Pimples inside your nose are a very particular kind of annoying: They are often painful and hard to treat as the skin there is very sensitive, delicate, and best left alone. That's why, and we hate to tell you this, the best treatment plan is to let it be. (We're all about solutions here, but sometimes the best action is no action.) "If the pimple inside your nose is painful, you can apply a hot compress to the area, which will help soothe it," Nicole Hatfield, certified esthetician for Pomp and founder of Radiant Beings Wellness & Beauty recently told us. "It will go away on its own; just be sure not to mess with it or try to pop it."

If not doing anything is simply not an option, King notes there are some topicals that can be safe for the area. "Acne pimples will be resolved with time," she assures us. "But there are also OTC acne-fighting ingredients like salicylic acid and benzoyl peroxide that can be carefully applied." Careful is the operative word here: This is not an area of the skin you want to slather stuff onto liberally. 

The takeaway.

Acne from mask wearing is very common—and one place you may be getting those zits is inside your nose. These tend to be more tender and harder to treat, as it is a very delicate area. (However, this is no excuse not to wear your mask.) Try to leave the blemish alone—or, if you must, apply topicals very carefully.

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