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  • 3M N95 masks that are NIOSH-approved are the most sought-after coronavirus face masks out there right now, but you absolutely SHOULD NOT buy them even if you have the chance to do so.
  • N95 masks made by major manufacturers like 3M are still in short supply and are desperately needed by healthcare workers in hospitals.
  • There are also 3M KN95 face masks though, and right now there’s a rare opportunity to buy them on Amazon.

UPDATE: These are now sold out, as we expected. Here’s a popular alternative for anyone looking for KN95 face masks:

Price:$69.98 ($3.50 / mask) Available from Amazon, BGR may receive a commission Buy Now

EARLIER: Visit the CDC’s web page covering how to protect yourself from catching the novel coronavirus and you’ll find two important notes regarding face masks. First and foremost, you need to “cover your mouth and nose with a cloth face cover when around others.” That means anytime you leave your home for any reason, you absolutely need to wear a face mask. But there’s another note right under there that’s just as important: “Do NOT use a facemask meant for a healthcare worker.”

Even the CDC emphasized that point by putting the word “not” in all caps. This is absolutely crucial because there is still a huge shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE) at hospitals and other healthcare facilities across the country. Despite the fact that these brave men and women are risking their lives every day to treat coronavirus patients and keep us all alive, there are still people out there who are buying up N95 face masks and selling them to the general public at massively inflated prices. Please, don’t reward these horrible individuals.

The bottom line is that you simply don’t need an N95 face mask. As long as you practice social distancing and good hygiene by washing your hands anytime you touch an object or surface in public (best-selling hand sanitizer with the same formulation as Purell is in stock now at Amazon), you’ll be fine with regular 3-layer face masks like these top-sellers from Jointown. They’re only 60¢ each and they do a great job. That said, there are certain higher-risk situations where it’s good to have even better protection, such as riding on public transportation, flying on an airplane, or visiting a doctor’s office. Now, you have a rare chance to buy the best of the best on Amazon.

Price:$27.50 ($5.50 / mask) Available from Amazon, BGR may receive a commission Buy Now

3M is one of the top face mask brands in the world and it’s best known for its N95 face masks and larger plastic respirators. But 3M makes KN95 face masks as well, and one of the most popular models is in stock right now on Amazon. This almost never happens and they’re definitely going to sell out soon, so you’ll definitely need to hurry if you want some.

The masks in stock right now at Amazon are 3M 9501+ KN95 face masks and they’re much better than most other KN95 masks you’ll come across. In fact, they’re better than most N95 masks as well.

While only N95 face masks are NIOSH-approved, the organization now has an official list of non-approved masks that have been tested for their effectiveness. The “95” in N95 and KN95 means the masks filter at least 95% of tiny particles and if you head over to that NIOSH page, you’ll see that 3M 9502+ masks filtered between 97.27% and 99.17%. That’s among the best efficacy of all the masks you’ll find listed on that page. 3M 9501, 9501+, 9502, and 9502+ are all the same masks but they’re manufactured at different factories.

These 3M face masks are in stock and on sale right now on Amazon, so you can pick up a 5-pack for $27.50. That’s just $5.50 per mask and it’s a fraction of what sellers are charging on eBay for similar masks. These will definitely sell out soon though, so hurry or you’ll miss them.

Price:$27.50 ($5.50 / mask) Available from Amazon, BGR may receive a commission Buy Now

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