COVID-19 has been spreading rapidly across the globe. As such, hospitals and their medical staff are battling to provide their services despite their constrained supplies of masks, face shields, goggles, and all other PPEs of this sort. In the wake of this pandemic, instructional videos and articles for DIY masks have also mushroomed across on the web and social networking sites. Although such fabric masks may not come in handy for medics, they can provide protection in day to day settings.

Make Your Own Face Mask
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Therefore, custom made face masks made of fabric have now turned into an essential item. But if purchasing a mask or stitching one isn’t perfect for you, then don’t worry! It’s astonishingly simple to craft a DIY face mask with things that may already be available in your house. What’s great is that you don’t even need to use a needle and thread – you can easily make one without sewing!

How to make a no-stitch mask:

There are lots of DIY approaches to creating a mask without using a sewing machine. The reason behind it is that such fabric masks are quite simple to make. They can be crafted by utilizing common things that are lying around in your home. Following are 3 different ways to make a no-sew cloth mask:

1.     Instructions to make a mask using a bandana or a cotton cloth:

If that you’ve gone out in public lately, you’ve most likely come across people wearing bandana masks. These are principally utilized by individuals who don’t possess other masks. Here is a speedy and simple way for creating a face mask on your own without purchasing new supplies and
without using a sewing machine:

mask using a sock
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  • Place a bandana or a cotton cloth (measuring 20” x 20”) on a flat surface
  • Keep a smooth coffee filter in the middle the squared cloth (this step is not mandatory)
  • Fold the top and base towards the middle
  • Put a paper clip, or some other metallic piece near the top (can be skipped) 
  • Repeat the second step
  • Fold the sides into the middle, keeping the ties at the folded crease. In case you’re utilizing elastic bands, circle these around the cloth. If you’ve chosen laces or strings, bring the middle of those in the crease and pull the strings tightly
  • Insert one end of the cloth into the other
  • Bring the mask to the level of your face and secure the strings. For elastic bands, loop them over each ear. In case of laces and strings, knot them at the back of your head
  • Some adjustments may be required to ensure the mask is properly secured

2.     Instructions to make a mask using a sock:

  • Get a sock of your choice and spread it out over a surface in a horizontal fashion
  • Bring the right side of your sock to the middle. Now get hold of some scissors and cut to the left end of the overlap. Take away the extra piece.
  • Unfold the fabric and place it in a vertical manner. Now, utilizing scissors, start cutting from the ankle gap opening and bring it to the next hole. This ought to make a stretchy rectangular material.
mask using a sock 1
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Open up the sock entirely, tuck it vertically two times more. With the scissors, slice into the folded sock an inch from above, however not entirely through.

  • Once you unfurl the sock, you will notice that the cut made holes to cover your ears. Keep a filter of your choice inside for added safety.

3.     Instructions to make a mask using a normal T-shirt:

Get a simple short-sleeved T-shirt (dodge V-necks if you can) and put it on just the way you usually would. Get your head partially through the neckline. Leave it there so the upper part of the neckline is directly over your eyebrows and the lower part of the neckline is beneath your jaw.

using a normal T-shirt
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  • Take both of the sleeves and tie them up behind your head into a strong knot (or anything which you find comfy). Just make sure that you achieve a firm grip around your face.
  • Finally, draw up the additional fabric around your neck and cover your mouth with it. Just bear in mind that a filter is essential here

In case you want some extra information, here are some frequently asked questions and their answers:

Which material is appropriate for a face mask?

For a handcrafted mask to be powerful and effective enough, it must cover your nose and mouth. This is because these are the places where droplets and particles leave and go inside. As far as the material is concerned, the thicker fabric you use the greater safety it would offer.

In our opinion, the finest material for a handcrafted mask would be firmly woven, pure cotton. You can utilize a fabric headband, covers for pillows, curtains, or whatever else you may find easily inside the house. You can similarly utilize a T-shirt. However, it’s not our first choice since its material is knitted and therefore leaves gaps when stretched.

Furthermore, you’ll require something to allow the mask cling to your head while being cosy at the same time. You can employ pins, hair bands, or elastic strings to lock the mask around the ears. However, shoelaces and strips that you can knot behind your head may feel comparatively comfier. You can also include a metal piece such as a paper clasp so that it fits properly around your nose.

appropriate material
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Is it mandatory to add a filter inside the mask?

When you place a filter inside, it acts as an extra wall of protection. This is why it is significantly safer as compared to using a single layer of fabric. It would act as a decent middle layer between the inner and outer layers of cloth.

Therefore, it’s sensible to place one in your mask, if you have Espresso filters, dryer sheets, etc. available in your house. HEPA filters which are commonly utilized as decontaminators in machines like ACs and heaters may also come in handy. You can even go for some Kleenex if nothing else is present.

However, it isn’t mandatory to use a filter. Just to ensure that your DIY mask without a filter provides efficient filtration, raise it towards a light source. Is it translucent and can you without much of an effort see somewhat through it? If the answer is yes, including a filter may further inhibit the drops originating from your mouth from diffusing out into the air. Such is recommended by the CDC.

Can cloth masks be used as a substitute for medical masks?


No doubt you must cover your nose, eyes, and mouth, but that does not mean that you go on the search for face shields and N-95 masks. These are not suggested for anyone other than healthcare and medical staff – those taking care of and working on the front line with infected patients. Hospitals desperately require this equipment, so you should leave the N-95 masks for their use only.

medical masks
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In this regard, handmade or DIY versions are a sensible option for the common public. These can be more relaxed and efficient than merely wearing a scarf around your nose and mouth areas.

Do cloth face masks safeguard you against COVID-19?

Researches unmasked the fact that Corona Virus can be spread by individuals who are not even demonstrating any symptoms of the disease yet. As such, the CDC immediately suggested that everybody should use a mask (at least a fabric one) when outside their homes. That is because masks reduce the drops from releasing into the air, onto someone else or a surface, when a person sneezes or coughs. So it could be concluded that a mask is more efficient in safeguarding others rather than securing yourself.

However, they work well if they’re used by each person in spaces where social distancing is hard, like markets and drugstores. The reason why the CDC suggests this is that it can minimize the transfer of the virus from infectious individuals who aren’t aware they are carriers of it.

Do keep in mind that face masks made of cloth or fabric are not as efficient and protective as CDC-endorsed ones. Those include medical and N-95 masks. However, we should strive to minimize the spread of the virus by wearing whatever mask we have available.

Conclusion

It’s imperative to keep in mind that a face mask alone isn’t sufficient to protect you, especially during this pandemic. Ensure that you additionally use glasses or goggles to secure your eyes. Also do not touch your mouth especially while you’re wearing a mask. When you’re back home, disinfect your mask and allow it to dry (in the sun if possible) to prevent any microbial or viral growth. Later, store it in a clean and dry plastic bag.

Most of all, keep sanitizing your hands and maintain social distancing, only leaving the house when necessary. Also, abiding by rules, such as the six-foot distance one, and washing and sanitizing hands is essential in our fight against this virus.