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“You Must Wear a Mask to Enter”

With Masks Increasingly Becoming the Norm, We Compared Popular Choices – Sponsored Post

In cities across the country signs are popping up on stores and public transit, “You must wear a mask to enter”. Even if masks are not required in your area yet, public health experts agree, masks along with hand washing are some of the most effective public health tools available. But if you are looking for a mask what type should you get?

There are 4 main types of masks:

  • N95 respirators
  • Reusable pollution masks
  • Fabric masks (often homemade)
  • Disposable protective masks

We looked at these popular mask types to see how they compared for safety, comfort and price.

N95 Respirators

N95s are a respirator style mask usually used in construction, these masks are in very high demand for medical use as they filter 95% of particles. Although they have very high levels or particle filtration they can be extremely difficult to breath in. Some masks feature a valve which helps with breathing but negates the public health benefit as the users exhalations are not filtered. N95 masks are also in huge demand for hospitals and care homes, health authorities are not recommending them for the general public. It’s also important to note that these masks are disposable and should not be used repeatedly.

Pros

  • High Filtration
  • Certified and tested
  • Generally won’t fog glasses
  • Disposable (Won’t become contaminated with reuse)

Cons

  • Hard to breath or the exhalation valve doesn’t protect those around you
  • Extremely expensive (Upwards of $10 per mask)
  • Very hard to find
  • Hospitals and doctors need them
  • Disposable ($10 a grocery store visits adds up)

Verdict: Not Recommended

Reusable Pollution Masks

Reusable pollution masks have been advertised heavily on social media in recent months, however there are several reasons we don’t recommend these masks. First of all most of them feature a breathing valve, letting unfiltered air escape. They generally don’t conform to any standard and are usually untested or certified. Lastly and perhaps most importantly, the majority of these masks are being sold directly from China, now while that can make them very cheap, delivery can take up to 3 months for these types of shipments.

Pros

  • Easier to breath in
  • Generally won’t fog glasses
  • Reusable

Cons

  • Generally not tested or certified
  • Unknown filtration
  • Models with an exhalation valve don’t protect those around you
  • Shipping time can take months
  • Can become contaminated with reuse

Verdict: Not Recommended

Fabric Masks

Homemade or store bought fabric masks are another popular option right now. On the plus side these masks are pretty easy to find and make and can be made with different fabric patterns. We have several issues with fabric masks however, first of all they can be very hard to breath in and can fog glasses. The filtration of the masks is also a complete unknown and will undoubtedly vary mask to mask. While they can be quite stylish we are on the fence with these masks and ultimately it’s a personal choice.

Pros

  • Easy to make or buy
  • Can be stylish
  • Cheap(ish)

Cons

  • Impossible to know filtration values
  • Can be hard to breath
  • Can fog glasses
  • Can become contaminated with reuse

Verdict: It is a personal choice

Disposable Protective Masks

Disposable protective masks are similar to surgical masks but are generally certified for home and personal use (meaning they are not meant for medical use). These masks offer a pretty good balance of high filtration while still being easy to breath in. Because they are not certified for hospital use, you don’t have to worry that you’re taking a mask away from a nurse or other essential worker. It’s important to note that these are also one-time use masks and should be disposed of after each use. The advantage of disposable masks is that they can’t become contaminated from reuse but the disadvantage is obvious, each mask has a cost.

We have partnered with Daily Care, a Canadian medical supply company, to give our readers an exclusive discount on their disposable protective masks. They have a 95% bacterial filtration efficiency, are lightweight, easy to breath in and won’t fog your glasses. All of their masks are in-stock and ship locally so you should have your order within 2-10 days.Use the link below or coupon code, GIFT10 for $10 off your order.

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Easy to breath in
  • Good filtration (95% bacterial, 70% particle)
  • Certified and tested
  • Won’t fog glasses
  • Affordable
  • Free local shipping

Cons

  • Not as stylish
  • Disposable so you will need to stock up

Verdict: Recommended

Click here for $10 Off Daily Care Protective Masks

 

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