Face masks don’t tend to be the most pleasant thing to wear. They can strain the ears, make talking less easy, and become itchy after a long day of use. Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to address these problems. Whether you are heading to work, travelling for long hours or enjoying your vacation, here are some tips to make wearing a face mask more comfortable.
- Wear a Properly-Fitting Mask
One of the best ways to make mask-wearing more comfortable is to get a mask that properly fits you in the first place. Wearing a mask that is too tight can be intolerable as it can irritate your nose or cause strains on your ears. On the other hand, a loose mask will keep falling off your nose and won’t be effective against filtering out dust and respiratory particles.
Finding a mask that comfortably fits may be difficult, especially since most masks are available only in a standard size. In order to get a proper fit, choose masks with adjustable ear loops or get adjustable mask extenders. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) also recommends double-masking by wearing a reusable mask over a disposable, medical-grade one. Apart from ensuring a better fit, double-masking provides extra protection for the wearer, so you should definitely consider buying an antimicrobial face mask online and layer with it a disposable mask.
- Apply an Anti-Fog Spray
Wearing face masks can be a major inconvenience, particularly for people who wear glasses. Face masks, especially loose-fitting ones, make glasses fog up because breath tends to rise up in the gap between your mask and nose. One easy way to solve this problem is to apply an anti-fog spray before heading out. Anti-fog sprays work by reducing surface tension in your lenses, thereby minimizing the formation of fog. If an anti-fog spray is hard to come by, another useful trick is to wash your lenses with soap and water. This technique works the same way as an anti-fog spray. By leaving behind a thin surfactant film, soapy water can reduce surface tension and lessen fog formation on your glasses.
- Buy Head Loop or Neck Loop Face Masks
Ear loop face masks can become unbearable on the ears if you are going to wear them all day long. Thankfully, there are face masks with a head or neck loop design that makes mask-wearing a more comfortable experience. The loops of these masks rest on your neck or at the back of your head, removing any strain on the ears. Because of this feature, these masks remain painless and comfortable even after long hours of wearing. Head or neck loop face masks also generally fit better than most ear loop face masks. They form a tight seal around your mouth and nose, so these masks don’t easily slide down when you talk.
- Always Bring Extra Face Masks
Because neither surgical masks nor any disposable face or mouth coverings are designed to be used for extended periods of time, it is recommended to bring along a few backup masks every time you head out. Wearing a mask for long hours in a day decreases its filtering capacity—consequently exposing you to more pathogenic particles—which is why masks should be replaced at least every 4 hours. In addition, your backup masks would always come in handy in case your mask becomes soiled, torn or uncomfortable to wear.
- Put on Mask Brackets
Mask brackets are silicone or plastic frames that you can wear under your mask. They make wearing a face mask more comfortable by letting you breathe more easily and allowing you to speak more clearly. If you are wearing makeup, mask brackets can also save it from smudging. Mask brackets also help prevent acne breakouts caused by wearing face masks.
For people who find wearing a face mask a tad bit uncomfortable, putting on mask brackets could be the solution. Here are some things to remember when getting one:
- The mask bracket must not allow any gaps between your mask and all sides of your face.
- Mask brackets can still potentially cause acne breakouts because they still touch your face.
- Mask brackets come in different shapes and sizes. Find out what kind of mask you are supposed to use with it to avoid a bad fit.
- Mask brackets are reusable and thus require regular cleaning.
- Wash Your Reusable Masks Regularly
Wearing a dirty mask can irritate your skin and cause acne breakouts. If you are someone who wears reusable masks, the CDC recommends washing your mask with soap and water at least once a day to avoid skin problems like acne and contact dermatitis. Disposable masks, on the other hand, are designed for a one-time use and must be thrown away after each use.
Wearing a face mask can be challenging, especially when you have to wear it all day. With the help of these tips, it becomes much easier to stay protected and to keep everyone around you safe.