Non-medical face masks are available for anyone heading back to work, and they're different from N95 or surgical masks. Here's what's available if you want to look professional while staying safe.
As certain states begin to slowly reopen public places such as restaurants, gyms, and salons, the World Health Organization and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are emphasizing the importance of safety precautions--particularly when it comes to wearing masks.
While health officials say N95 respirator masks and surgical masks should be worn by frontline health care workers, both the CDC and WHO also urge the public to sport non-surgical masks when leaving the house.
Non-surgical masks are made of cloth, typically fabrics such as cotton and linen. These help slow the spread of the virus by reducing the amount of particles and droplets one breathes in or spreads outward. Some people use bandanas and scarves, or even make their own from T-shirts. However, many retailers have begun selling masks.
For those who might be returning to work soon, or who are visiting newly opened vendors, the following masks are both practical and stylish options that abide by healthcare guidelines.
Retailer Buck Mason has created a line of antimicrobial provincial face masks in an effort called Masks for America. The non-medical, reusable masks come in a five pack of neutral colors and patterns, with an inner layer that is treated with an antimicrobial coating that lasts up to 30 wash cycles. Masks begin shipping the week of May 18.$30 at Buck Mason
Lucky Brand doesn't just make jeans. This retailer is also jumping into the mask game. Selling five-packs of reusable, washable non-medical masks, Lucky Brand will donate five masks to those in need. Buyers can get a pack of striped masks or a variety pack.$20 at Lucky Brand
Vistaprint is upping the ante with replaceable filter system (RFS) masks. The reusable, non-medical RFS masks block airborne contaminants without trapping moisture. The filter is replaceable, allowing the user to wash the mask and reuse.$18 at Vistaprint
Subzero also features a slew of simple, stylish masks. The masks are made in the USA, are hand-sewn, and made of 100% breathable cotton. The non-medical masks can also be upgraded to include premium filters, which are two layers of filter-media sewn between the layers of the mask. The filter protects from microscopic particles, as well as odors.$19 at Subzero
Match your furry friend with this dog nose and mouth face mask. Zazzle makes a bevy of fun, machine washable, reusable, non-medical face masks made of 100% polyester. You can even make your own mask print on the site.$13 at Zazzle
Casetify is making strides to donate masks--the company has already donated more than 35,000. Any number of masks a user buys, Casetify donates the same number to medical professionals. Each reusable, cloth mask comes with two filters for multiple layers of protection.$15 at Casetify
Designer Kenny Flowers is bringing style to face masks with beach-themed patterns. For every purchase of a non-medical "lifestyle" mask, Kenny Flowers donates one to communities in Bali.$24 at Kenny Flowers