Frequently asked questions about the surgical mask

So many questions arise when researching the best face mask.  Some may know how to fashion a DIY mask out of cloth with a pattern, and it's wonderful if you can make your own.  I've bought reusable masks for some purposes, but many other times I bought a surgical mask at CVS, Walgreens or Walmart.  Whether you make a black or white mask, many of the same questions remain.  Here are some of the frequently asked questions about the surgical mask.


Surgical mask

1.  How to make a surgical mask?  This blog post Titled: How to sew a DIY face mask has a free, printable pattern and also includes a link to a YouTube with step by step instructions.  Now that the CDC has recommended that everyone wear a face covering, many of us have been struggling to find one.  Fabric masks are not as effective as N95 or surgical masks, but wearing a fabric mask is better than not wearing a mask at all.

2.  How to wear a surgical mask?  

  • Clean hands well with soap and water or alcohol based hand sanitizer before picking up the mask
  • Make sure that your mouth and nose are completely covered by the mask, and that there is no gapping
  • Masks should be replaced as soon as they are damp, and are not meant to be reworn if disposable
  • Remove your mask from the back, not the front and dispose of it immediately in a closed receptacle.  Wash hands immediately after.

This article How to wear a facemark for Covid-19 protection has great tips for putting on fabric masks and laundering them as well.  The details make such a big difference.  It makes an excellent suggestion of laundering your cloth face masks in a pillowcase.  A mesh lingerie and delicates laundry bag can work very well if you have one.

3.  Where can I buy a surgical mask?  This was a question that I had myself at the onset of the Coranavirus.  I usually keep several boxes of disposable face masks around, but all of the sudden they became very scarce.  My Asian friends had taught me years ago that if I was unwell I should wear a mask to protect others.  I also often wore them to protect myself as an auto-immune condition had left me with a compromised immune system.

 I checked Amazon, Google and Ebay for masks and couldn't find them anywhere.  Finally, I called the talented woman whom I work with to import products.  I asked her to source me a surgical mask as my next product instead of what I had planned.  I knew that masks would be an integral part to protecting people from getting sick, as well as from transmitting the virus.  I have disposable surgical masks for sale on Shop Megan Graham Beauty.  They are 3ply, have low breathing resistance, are adult sized and have made many customers very happy.

surgical mask

4.  How long can I wear a face mask?  You should wear your mask only until it is damp, and no longer.  As tempting as it can be to wear a disposable mask again, they are only meant to be worn once and then safely disposed.  The coronavirus has survived for up to a week on the outside of masks, so they should be carefully taken off and not won again.

5.  What is a surgical mask?  A surgical mask provides protection against large droplets and splashes.  They provide protection to others from the wearers respiratory emissions.  They are not tight fitting, and leakage occurs around the edges when the wearer is inhaling.  They do not protect the wearer from small particles.

I hope that you find this blog helpful.  I wanted to share a great video that shows how to use three hair elastics to make a tighter seal with a surgical mask.  Click here to learn how to fix the mask.  If you have any patterns that you like, or suggestions for things you'd like to hear more about, please comment below.  Sometimes, when I'm writing my blogs I wonder if people are reading them, and when I get your comments, it makes my day.

Stay healthy and beautiful,


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