CDC Recommends … Types of Masks

By  | February 21, 2021 | Filed under: News

ATLANTA, GA-There are many types of masks you can use to protect yourself and others from getting and spreading COVID-19. Cloth masks can be made from a variety of fabrics, and many types of cloth masks are available. Do not wear cloth masks with exhalation valves or vents, single layer or masks made of thin fabric that don’t block light. Disposable face masks are widely available. Do not wear disposable masks with gaps around the sides of the face or nose, or if wet or dirty.

There are many types of masks you can use to protect yourself and others from getting and spreading COVID-19. When choosing a mask, choose one that fits snugly. Learn more about how to choose a mask that fits well and offers the best protection.

Cloth Masksillustration of child wearing mask and waving

Cloth Masks can be made from a variety of fabrics, and many types of cloth masks are available.

Look for

Multiple layers of tightly woven, breathable fabric
Nose wire
Mask should block light when held up to bright light source
DO NOT choose masks that have exhalation valves or vents which allow virus particles to escape

Do NOT wear

Masks with exhalation valves or vents
Single layer or masks made of thin fabric that don’t block light
Wear a mask anytime you are indoors or outdoors with people you don’t live with.

When to wear

Anytime you are indoors or outdoors with people who don’t live with you.

2 Ways to have better fit and extra protection

Wear two masks (disposable mask underneath AND cloth mask on top)
Combine a cloth mask with a fitter or brace

knot and fold Disposable Masks

Disposable face masks are widely available.

Look for:

  • A description indicating multiple layers of non-woven material
  • Nose wire  

Do NOT wear

  • Masks with gaps around the sides of the face or nose
  • If wet or dirty  

When to wear

  • Anytime you are indoors or outdoors with people you don’t live with.Anytime you are indoors or outdoors with people you don’t live with.

Ways to have better fit and extra protection

  • Wear two masks (disposable mask underneath AND cloth mask on top)
  • A cloth mask can be combined with a fitter or brace
  • Knot and tuck ear loops of a 3-ply mask where they join the edge of the mask
    • Fold and tuck the unneeded material under the edges

Media Release/Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

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