Washable Face Mask

Donation Requests

If you are seeking mask donations for your volunteer organization or non-profit or for health care workers, please contact me.

Order a Face Mask

Per each cotton/polyester facemask, shipping by USPS First-Class Mail included. Allow 7 to 10 days for delivery. Please use the Contact Me link to provide your address and discuss color/pattern options. All mask orders now come with a five-pack supply of Filti Face Mask inserts (Up to 95% efficient at 0.3 micron at 5.33cm/sec face velocity). At this time, all proceeds go back into the supply fund to provide mask donations.

$12.00

You can also order through my Etsy Shop.

Features

  • Washable and reusable
  • Shapes over nose and cheekbones
  • Snaps under chin accommodate a beard
  • Snaps can be left open for a looser face covering fit
  • Filter pocket with included reusable Filti inserts
  • Reduce or eliminate glasses fogging with shaped fit

Download Face Mask Instructions

How good is Filti? See this video.

For instruction on how to sterilize Filti inserts, see this video.

Want to see or leave a review? You can do that here.

Available Patterns/Colors

Special Orders

If you like, you can send baby bandana bibs of your choice and I will convert them to masks for $5 each.

Mask Design

Objective

Create a mask design to achieve an optimum combination of particle filtration efficiency, breathability, and comfort as well as aesthetic value and ease of construction

Design Considerations

Materials have been chosen and design has been developed according to a number of recommendations from the CDC and various state and municipal health departments as well as an examination of scientific literature both peer-reviewed and pre-print. The main points considered and incorporated are as follows:

100% Cotton T-Shirt Outer Layer: Cotton t-shirt material has been cited as an acceptable last resort material for the general public in making homemade face coverings.

Polyester Microfleece Inner Layer: Several municipal and state health departments have released information on masks that include the following recommendation in mask design principles:

Suggested materials- outer layer tea cloth, inner layer of a microfleece to wick away moisture, and an inner tea cloth layer. 

This recommendation appears to be part of boilerplate copy, but the original source could not be determined.

Fit: While the efficacy of various materials in washable fabric masks is a significant consideration, it has been determined through review of scientific literature on the subject that fit is also a major consideration, and one in which dominant designs such as the pleated surgical-mask style and the Olson mask have been lacking, with gapping resulting from poor fit and lack of adjustability to fit the user.

Filter Insert Pocket: To compensate for the lower expected filtration efficiency of 100% cotton t-shirt material in comparison to tightly woven cotton material, this design relies on the use of a filter insert to achieve a higher particle filtration efficiency. The end-user can use whatever materials they have on hand or decide to use based on information available to them and their own determinations around breathability versus efficiency and their individual risk factors.

The filter pocket is a trapezoid shape that extends vertically over the nose past the bottom of the chin and horizontally to meet the cheekbones just outside of the eye sockets at the top and beyond the curvature of the cheeks around the mouth.

Chin fit: The adjustable space at the chin addresses two problems: 1) mask slippage when the mouth is opened and 2) accommodating beards.

History

In March 2020, the rapid spread of SARS-COV-2 in conjunction with a shortage of PPE and significantly increased demand for PPE prompted a nationwide call for crafters to sew makeshift fabric masks to supply healthcare workers as well as other volunteer workers in high-risk areas. In April 2020, state and municipal governments began issuing guidance and mandates for all individuals to wear face coverings in public.

The idea of this “baby bib modification” mask came when the designer spotted a rack of bandana bibs (during an unavoidable trip to a Family Dollar) and had the idea of quickly converting them to reusable fabric masks, eliminating the time needed to cut fabric. It was also determined quickly that the elasticity of the materials in these bandana bibs allowed for a better and more customizable fit. From there, design development proceeded along the lines of improving fit and reducing air gaps while maintaining the ease and speed of construction.

Advantages of Design

This design offers several key advantages:

Ready availability of materials: At this time, there appears to be no supply chain difficulties in obtaining baby bandana bibs, as all companies seem to be well stocked and shipping times are only slightly extended in comparison to other materials.

Speed of production: There is no cutting out of patterns, which greatly speeds up production time for makers who do not have access to tools necessary to rapidly cut many pieces at once. It is also not necessary to cut pieces for a variety of sizes.

Materials: The standard materials of baby bandana bibs, being 100% cotton t-shirt outer material and moisture-wicking polyester microfleece, align with common recommendations for reusable fabric mask materials. Polyester microfleece also offers comfort in close skin contact.

No middle seam: Unlike the Olson contour mask and other similar patterns, this design does not necessitate a seam in the front, which has the disadvantage of creating holes in the fabric that present possible particle entry points.

Chin/beard space: The adjustable space around the chin allows for movement of the jaw without pulling the mask down from the nose. It also allows the user to tuck a beard into the mask.

Disadvantages of Design

There are some possible drawbacks to this design.

Cost: In comparison with masks made from whole cloth, the cost of materials is significantly higher, at around $1.70 to $2.25 per mask.

Filtration efficiency without filter insert: In comparison with masks made from tightly woven cotton fabrics, this mask offers a lower filtration efficiency if a filter insert is not used.

Air infiltration at chin: While the snap and tongue design of the chin offers key advantages, it may have the disadvantage of air leakage at this point. This can be determined by lab testing.

Recommendations for Wear

This mask design includes a channel for ties or elastic loops and comes with double loops of elastic. These may be work in tandem around the ears, or with one set of loops around the ears and one set secured towards the crown of the head or at the back of the neck. The best fit seems to be achieved by fastening one set of loops behind the head. However, simply looping around the ears seems to be more comfortable in terms of breathability.

This design also features an adjustable closure under the chin using two snap tabs and a “tongue.” This should allow the user to pull the mask tight under the chin for a snug fit or to wear more loosely if the preference is for comfort. This design also allows for accommodation of a beard without resulting in air gapping. To don the mask, the user should secure the snap tabs then pull the tongue through toward the throat until desired fit is achieved.

Technical Specifications

Samples have been sent to labs for testing. Results of those tests will be posted here.

Cash Donations

The majority of masks made are going to donations for voluteer organiztions, non-profits, and health care workers. If you would like to make a cash donation for supplies, use this box.

Cash Donation for Supplies

Use this link if you would like to make a cash donation for purchase of supplies, including baby bibs, filter media (Filti Face Mask Material), thread, and elastic. (Believe it or not, the price of both thread and elastic has gone up dramatically.)

$1.00

FDA Emergency Use Authorization Information

On April 24, 2020 in response to questions and concerns that have been received by FDA since issuance of the April 18, 2020 letter of authorization and having concluded that revising the April 18, 2020 EUA is appropriate to protect the public health or safety under section 564(g)(2)(c) of the Act (21 U.S.C. § 360bbb-3(g)(2)(c)), FDA is reissuing the April 18, 2020 letter in its entirety with amendments6 incorporated. Specifically, FDA is clarifying through this re-issued letter that facemasks, including cloth face coverings, are authorized to be used by HCP only as source control7,8 in accordance with CDC recommendations under this EUA.9 As stated in the April 18 letter, face masks are authorized for use by the general public to cover their noses and mouths, in accordance with CDC recommendations.

For the most current CDC recommendations on the use of face masks by the general public during COVID-19, please visit CDC’s webpage: Recommendation Regarding the Use of Cloth Face Coverings, Especially in Areas of Significant Community-Based Transmission For the most recent recommendations on use of face masks by HCPs in a healthcare setting, see: Strategies to Optimize the Supply of PPE and Equipment.

  • This product has not been FDA cleared or approved
  • This product has been authorized by FDA under an EUA for use as source control by the general public as well as by HCP in healthcare settings as to help prevent the spread of infection or illness during the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • This product is authorized only for the duration of the declaration that circumstances exist justifying the authorization of the emergency use of medical devices, including alternative products used as medical devices, during the COVID-19 outbreak, under section 564(b)(1) of the Act, 21 U.S.C. § 360bbb-3(b)(1) unless the authorization is terminated or revoked sooner.