The world just experienced the largest spike in reported coronavirus cases in history. If you need to go out (and, to be clear, you shouldn’t unless it’s essential), the advice is the same as ever: Wear a mask. I repeat, wear a mask.
A study published on June 12 by a team of researchers led by a Texas A&M University professor found that not wearing a face mask “dramatically increases a person’s chances of being infected by the COVID-19 virus.” This inexpensive practice, in conjunction with social distancing and proper hygiene, is “the most likely opportunity to stop the COVID-19 pandemic,” according to the researchers.
It’s really that simple.
Keep in mind that the WHO has released new guidelines for more effective cloth masks—recommending that they consist of at least three layers of different materials: an inner layer being an absorbent material (such as cotton), a middle layer of nonwoven materials for the filter (for instance, polypropylene), and an outer layer made of a nonabsorbent material (such as a polyester or a polyester blend).
If you’re looking for a mask to wear, the Nisolo Mask Marketplace is a great place to start. The online mask shop curated by fashion label Nisolo was created when the brand was forced to close its production factory due to COVID-19 restrictions. It features masks individually selected and rated on a scale of 0-5 for style, comfort, functionality, breathability, and sustainability. Additionally, Nisolo is constantly identifying and filling gaps in the marketplace based on customer needs and mask availability.
Plus, you can see shipping estimate times on all masks, so you can more easily shop for available masks that meet your needs and that you can buy online right now.
Here are eight of our favorite masks on the Nisolo Mask Marketplace right now.
3D Print Knit Filtered Mask by Ministry of Supply
The mask to beat all masks, this functional superstar is soft, comfortable, washable, and includes 10 filters made of melt-blown polypropylene that have been tested by Nelson Labs and health professionals and have over 95% BFE (Bacterial Filtration Efficiency).
Limited Edition Poplin Face Mask by Ética
Want a tie-dye face mask to match your tie-dye sweat suit? Here it is. This whimsical, well-designed mask is individually colored with Ética’s nontoxic botanical dye. And it’s got protection as well as style, since each order comes with one mask and two antibacterial melt-blown polypropylene filters.
Everyday Filtered Mask by Proper Cloth
This mask is unique in its fit—with neither ear loops nor ties, but elastic straps that fit over your head. Other than that, the look is utilitarian—and so is the construction. This mask from Proper Cloth includes a removable, washable filter (lab-test-certified to filter out ≥ 85% of 0.1-micron-sized particles) that is made of three layers of nonwoven polypropylene. Additionally, the 100% cotton layers are treated with an antimicrobial solution. Plus, it’s certified nontoxic by the Oeko-Tex Association.
Salvaged Hemp Blend Face Mask by United By Blue
If you haven’t heard yet, all those disposable face masks are causing a bit of trouble for the environment—and city sewers. But B Corp brand United By Blue is looking to change that. The Salvaged Hemp Blend Face Mask is made of upcycled salvaged fabric—including a blend of hemp, GOTS Certified organic cotton, and recycled polyester. Each machine-washable mask in this pack of three also features a pocket for a filter, should you want to insert one.
Reusable Cotton Mask Set by Baggu
If you’re sick of basic, bland masks, these fun masks from Baggu have personality (without being garish) dyed into the tightly woven 100% cotton. Fitwise, Baggu’s masks have a double layer of fabric with an adjustable strap and a moldable nose bridge to ensure a comfortable fit. These masks also contain a filter pocket.
Upcycled Hemp & Cotton Mask by Made Trade
These simple masks look like the sustainable, upgraded version of disposable nonmedical masks—and are just as sensible. They’re handmade in Portland, Oregon, out of GOTS-certified organic cotton and recycled hemp. Each pack of three comes with rich, natural, PNW-inspired hues: Fog, Ocean, and Pine, and each mask features elastic ear loops and a filter pocket.