A face mask is simply a thin cloth face mask attached to your face with straps or cords, often made of cloth or latex, to cover the entire face. Face masks have many cosmetic uses, but were originally used to prevent the spread of contagious diseases through the air. Controlling the spread of bacteria and viruses was an important aspect of medical surgery during medieval times. The face mask can either be manually applied or attached to the face using facial hair. Manual face masks have been found to be effective for some people, but sometimes facial hair can get in the way, rendering the mask useless.
DescriptionA cloth face mask is typically a disposable mask designed primarily to protect against dust and the spread of contagious diseases through the air. When facial distancing is impossible and if other effective masks aren’t available, manual cloth masks are used. These cloth masks are typically made from either polyester or vinyl, which is also known as PVC, which has been chemically coated so that it will repel water and moisture. They are available in various color choices to easily match skin tone.
Types and NumbersThe face mask can have numerous layers. The first few layers are designed to cover and trap most of the tiny particles that enter the nose and mouth. The “thick” layer is designed to trap and hold more bacteria. The thickest layer is called the “periaqueductal” (which means “end duct”) and it’s located on top of the end duct. Other layers exist that serve a variety of purposes. Some help keep dirt and microorganisms off the nose and mouth, some trap air pollutants, some reduce or eliminate swelling and some improve facial appearance.
Which Materials Are the Best? Although there isn’t a standard for manufacturing these protective outfits, we can generally recommend using materials that are most commonly used in face masks. These materials include but are not limited to, neoprene, polyester, silicone, polypropylene, acetone, ethyl acetate (rubbing alcohol), chlorine dioxide, calcium carbonate, polyurethane foam, and polyurethane foam inserts. The type of fabric that you choose depends on your personal preferences, health, and any allergies that you may be experiencing.
Cleaning and CareMany people suffer from unwanted hair and facial debris, which make cleaning the mask a major task. Because these masks are designed to fit loosely and to trap and contain all manner of particles, they need to be frequently washed with hand or with a wide-toothed comb to remove any soap residue, dirt, and grime. To clean your face mask, you should either wash it in the sink with warm water, or carefully wash each layer by hand using a mild detergent. Never scrub your masks, as this will lead to the tearing of the mask fabric and serious injury to you and your skin.
As with most things, the more research you do regarding face masks, the more knowledgeable you will become about them and their proper use. While face masks do provide some immediate and visible benefits, there are many other ways in which these specialized masks can be used to improve the look and health of your skin. In particular, the use of these specialized masks can help improve your overall social distancing. Face masks have been proven to be effective social distancers for social events ranging from small talk in the supermarket to large scale networking during dinner parties, weddings, and more.