La peau de l’enfant et le masque

The child's skin and the mask

 "The world is a big ball where everyone is masked" Luc de Clapiers

To face the pandemic, we are all concerned by barrier gestures: distance, hand washing and wearing a mask. Indispensable and essential actions to protect yourself and those around you. 

As children can sometimes be a little confused when faced with these new measures, it is a good time to take the time to (re) explain this situation to them and the reasons for wearing a mask ... talk to them in order to reassure them and perhaps let them choose a mask that they will enjoy wearing!

In this regard, the skin of children under a mask can go through some temporary troubles. Still under construction, fragile and sensitive, it is put to the test… OUATE explains everything that happens under this mask and gives you some tips to overcome these inconveniences. 

Continuous friction 

You will surely have noticed it, the skin reacts with the wearing of the mask by showing pimples, redness or even itching. 

Under a mask, it is in constant friction with the hydrolipidic film of the skin, also known as the skin barrier: a natural shield that acts to fight against external aggressions and limit water loss. 

This friction accelerates the process of desquamation of still young skin. The peeling has the same effect as a scrub, but by rubbing it removes skin cells that are not yet ripe. This friction damages the skin barrier and therefore causes these famous imperfections which are much more accentuated in children because their skin is five times thinner than that of an adult. Yes, as soon as you rub on something thin you refine it even more ... which makes the skin even more fragile!

Lack of oxygenation 

Breathing through a mask all day alters the hydrolipidic film, imbalances its ph and weakens the skin. We grant it to you, that's a lot ... 

The hydrolipidic film, this essential barrier created on the surface of the skin acts against bacteria and helps maintain its pH. 

In children, this hydrolipidic film is built up until they are 12 years old. In order for it to act as a barrier it needs a lot of oxygenation, therefore to breathe in the open air. Under a mask, the pH of the skin is unbalanced which makes the skin even more sensitive!

Heat & humidity 

Under a mask, the skin is confined. As soon as we are hot, she sweats and ends up in a humid environment which accelerates the proliferation of pathogens and causes these famous pimples. 

This famous layer of fat on the skin, which acts as a waterproof to prevent it from becoming dehydrated and maintains its elasticity, is the famous sebum, the skin of any adult person produces naturally. 

Before 9 years old, a child who does not produce sebum, his skin becomes dehydrated even faster and can cause atopic dermatitis or other problems. 

After 9 years, the skin begins to produce sebum, but under a mask when it perspires it produces even more and therefore reacts by causing a few pimples in addition to being dehydrated.

All the functions of the skin of children between 4 and 11 years old are under construction, it needs daily (even more than adults) to be cleansed, protected, hydrated and nourished with gentle care that is suitable for them. 

So to soften this period when we are all vulnerable, here are some suggestions:  

  1. Wash your hands very regularly throughout the day.
  2. Opt for an organic cotton mask.
  3. Gently cleanse your skin morning and evening (My Gentle Cleanser!).
  4. Moisturize your skin to protect and soothe it (All OUATE moisturizers are perfectly suited to the skin of children between 4 and 11 years old).
  5. Snack in the vitamins that fruits and vegetables provide us naturally. Here are some of the seasonal ones: carrots rich in beta-carotene allow our body to manufacture vitamin A: the healthy glow vitamin! Spinach, rich in minerals, magnesium and vitamins A and C, provides hydration and facilitates the healing of wounds and infections. Kiwis hold the record for vitamin C and maintain the skin's collagen. Citrus fruits (oranges, clementines, tangerines, lemons, etc.) are the kings of vitamin C, they make the skin firmer, more elastic, less relaxed, activate microcirculation and revive the complexion. It's good you have an idea of the next dessert and in which raw vegetables to bite into;) 
  6. And of course drink water throughout the day.

Beyond the (few) constraints that this mask can have, let's see the positive side: 

By repeating the same gestures daily to soothe, protect and benefit their skin, these good habits will eventually be taken and, above all, acquired! 

No more saying the same words ten, not twenty times in the most expeditious time slot of the day, we even take the bet that you will no longer need to remind them to wash their hands!