- Medical-grade face masks that block the transmission of viruses like the novel coronavirus are still extremely difficult to come by, and you probably shouldn’t buy one even if you can because healthcare professionals have a much greater need.
- What you might not realize, however, is that it’s very easy to make your own mask out of a few simple supplies you can get right now from Amazon and things that are already lying around your house.
- These masks are so simple to make that you don’t even need to sew, so just about anyone can make them with ease.
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We have probably said this about a hundred times by now, but we’re going to say it again: don’t buy medical-grade face masks. N95 respirator masks are in very short supply and if you do happen to find some available for purchase, you should leave them for healthcare professionals and first responders. They need these masks much more than you do.
If you happen to come across KN95 masks at a good price, sure, you can go ahead and buy those. They’re the Chinese version of N95 masks and while they’re believed to work just as well, they’re not certified for use by healthcare professionals so you’re not putting anyone at risk by buying them. You can also pick up Amazon’s best-selling face masks that are somehow back in stock right now, though likely not for much longer. These aren’t surgical-grade, but they’ll definitely do the trick as long as you practice social distancing and good hygiene.
That said, there’s actually a very simple way to can make masks yourself that are more than effective enough — IF YOU’RE SMART — and you can make dozens of them with a few simple supplies. We say “if you’re smart” because no, DIY masks obviously aren’t going to be as effective as N95 or KN95 masks. But if you practice good hygiene and use social distancing, these masks will do a great job of adding an extra layer of protection against aerosolized coronavirus.
We came across a great little video that shows how to make a DIY face mask that is much better than most basic masks you’ve seen plans for online. It’s not complicated at all, and you don’t even need to sew or use any hard-to-get supplies. Most of what you need to make these masks is probably already lying around your house, and the only supplies you won’t already have just came back in stock at Amazon. First, you’ll need a MERV 13 Pleated Air Filter. If the one linked here is sold out, use this search and get any well-reviewed air filer with a MERV 13 rating (nothing lower). You also need some Carbon Pad Charcoal Sheets for Air Filters.
Here’s the full list of supplies and materials you’ll need:
- Old T-shirt or leggings
- MERV 13 Filter (to filter small particles)
- Activated Carbon Sheet (to filter small particles and reduce odor)
- Maxi Pad or Sterile Gauze Pad (to wick moisture away from your mouth)
- Vinegar (to help kill bacteria and viruses)
- Glue Gun and Glue Sticks
That’s it! It’s a very simple little DIY face mask tutorial that can go a long way to help protect you and your loved ones. You’ll find the video embedded below.
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