From fogged glasses to acne, the COVID-19 mask struggle is real

Consumer Reports offers easy adjustments

As wearing a mask to slow the spread of COVID-19 becomes the norm, so do some annoyances, like fogged glasses, irritated ears and mask acne.
As wearing a mask to slow the spread of COVID-19 becomes the norm, so do some annoyances, like fogged glasses, irritated ears and mask acne.

SAN ANTONIO – As wearing a mask to slow the spread of COVID-19 becomes the norm, so do some annoyances, like fogged glasses, irritated ears and mask acne.

“There are some simple solutions,” said Lauren Friedman of Consumer Reports.

If you wear glasses or sunglasses and they are constantly fogging up, a mask with a wire sewn in at the top is your best bet. Pinch the top so it fits snugly across the bridge of your nose, and tighten the sides. Friedman also suggests wearing your glasses on top of the mask or applying an anti-fogging solution to your lenses.

Plenty of people are dealing with mask acne, now known as maskne.

“When you wear your mask for a long period of time, you sweat, which causes bacteria to build up. That can cause acne,” Friedman said. “Make sure your face and mask are both clean before heading out. If you’re still breaking out, a topical over-the-counter acne cream that contains benzoyl peroxide can help.”

If your ears feel irritated from wearing your mask, it’s because the elastic ear loops cause friction. Friedman suggests rubbing a bit of petroleum jelly behind your ears. Or, switch to a mask that ties in the back of your head.

You should avoid touching your mask, so if it keeps slipping, tighten the ear loops. Sliding a snug-fitting craft bead over the tip of the ear loop will make it adjustable, or simple tie a knot in the ear loop. A mask that slips below the nose is not doing the intended job.

RELATED: How to wash your cloth masks correctly, according to the CDC


About the Author:

As a consumer reporter, Marilyn is all about helping people stay safe and save a buck. Since coming to KSAT in 1985, she’s covered everything from crime to politics, winning awards for her coverage of the Mexican Mafia, Oklahoma tornadoes, children’s transplants, an investigation into voting irregularities and even a hit-and-run Santa Claus.