A man shaves his face in the mirror, with an assortment of skincare products lined up under the mirror.

Tips for Proper Face Care When Wearing a CPAP Mask

CPAP masks can cause a lot of problems and some of these include trap issues, skin problems, or improper fit. Here are a few suggestions for dealing with your CPAP mask, including face care tips.

Proper CPAP mask fit

Your mask needs a proper fit or it’s not going to give you the results that you need. You should try several masks until you find 1 that works the best for you.

For me, I use a simple nose mask as this is what works the best. I don’t like full-face masks, but some people may need this type of mask because of the way that they sleep. Speak to your sleep provider about masks to ensure you get a proper fit.

Facial hair interference

Any hair on your face may interfere with a properly fitting mask. In this case, you may have to shave completely to ensure that the mask fits well. You may also want to try a different beard shape to ensure that the mask is fitting in the best way.

By providing your email address, you are agreeing to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

Beauty products

Whenever you sleep, it’s not a good idea to leave any sort of beauty product on your face such as a cream, lotion, or any other type of product. These products may reduce the effectiveness of your mask seal.

Mask straps and seal

Your mask straps should be snug, but not too tight. If they are too tight, you’ll be uncomfortable, but if they’re too loose, you’ll get a poor mask seal.

If you see the red “frowny” face on your continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine, this can indicate a poor mask seal. A poor seal often causes my loose straps, which are causing air to seep into your mask from the sides.

CPAP face care tips

Mask acne and sweat

Acne from a CPAP mask is common because it’s on your face all night and oil can build up on your face. You may sweat during the night as the mask can be hot.

Nightly washing

I find it best to wash my face before I go to bed.

Re-washing if I wake up

If I wake up during the night, I wash my face again to remove oils. This reduces the chances of mask acne in the morning.

Acne products

If you break out a lot, you may want to use an over-the-counter acne product on your face to reduce oils and debris on your face.

Seek help from a dermatologist

Talk to your doctor or dermatologist if these breakouts are serious or if you can’t seem to reduce them on your own.

How to remove morning mask lines

A tight mask or mask straps can produce lines in the morning on your face. Washing your face with warm water should remove most lines that occur after mask use.

Mask liners, cheek pads, or nasal pads will reduce lines on the face if this is a serious issue for you. Talk to your sleep provider about individual products to find the best ones for your needs.

My top 3 face care tips

Take care of your face, ensure your mask fits properly, and speak to your doctor or sleep provider if you have any pressing issues. This is the best way to get the most out of your mask and CPAP machine.

Tell us your CPAP face care tips! Please share a comment.

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The SleepApnea.Sleep-Disorders.net team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

Join the conversation

Please read our rules before commenting.