Hopefully, we’ve all learned at least two key points from the coronavirus pandemic of 2020: face masks are effective when used properly, and they’re not going anywhere for the foreseeable future.
But that doesn’t mean you need to continue suffering from sore ears, chaffed facial skin and claustrophobia. Protective face masks are still new to us. We’re all in the apex of an unpredictable learning curve.
So let’s get creative with it.
Here are some tips on how to make your mask more comfortable:
Invest in a High-Quality Mask
Since it looks like face masks aren’t going anywhere, now is the time to invest in a high-quality face mask. When shopping for a safe yet comfortable face mask, make sure you’re getting effective materials.
Best Face Mask Materials
We like Public Goods’ KN95 Face Mask, constructed from five layers of cotton and polypropylene. Interestingly enough, we also have these materials lying around our homes.
You know your favorite worn out t-shirt? Odds are it’s 100% cotton. Cotton is an ideal fabric for face masks and old summer shirts alike because it’s breathable and stays cooler in the heat than other materials.
Polypropylene is a recyclable plastic that can be reused again and again. Plastics are in almost everything we use because they’re versatile and durable — two characteristics you want in your face mask.
People who wear glasses will appreciate masks with an adjustable nose clip. The KN95 has a strong metal nose clip, but some masks use a thin wire sewn into the fabric instead. For best results, tamp that clip onto the bridge of your nose before you don your glasses.
Make Sure It Fits
Most of all, get a face mask that is designed to fit the contours of your face. A snug seal keeps your face mask feeling secure, while ensuring potentially infected saliva droplets don’t enter or escape.
Make Your Mask Fit Better
One of the most wonderful aspects of humankind is our diversity and uniqueness. There isn’t much in life that’s truly one-size-fits-all. But when it comes to masks that fit, it can be a harsh reality to face.
If you’ve already invested in a high-quality face mask, but it feels too loose, too tight or it’s just too uncomfortable, don’t sweat it. Human ingenuity has your back.
Here are some creative methods to make your mask fit better:
- Use a headband with buttons to save your ears
- Make a behind-the-head ear saver
- No-sew adjustable face mask hack
Your mask should be snug but not tight. If your mask is too tight, you might be tempted to adjust it during the day. However, this will put you and the people around you at an unnecessary risk of exposure.
It’s best to ensure it fits properly and comfortably before leaving the house.
Use Your Mask for Aromatherapy
Now that you’re safe and secure, why not ride the wellness train all the way to the top?
If your mask is causing you more than just physical pain, we get it. Masks feel like they restrict your breathing. Even if you know it’s not life threatening, that restriction can still leave you feeling claustrophobic and anxious.
Fortunately, masks are perfect for all-day discreet aromatherapy. Synchronicity Hemp Oil Aromatherapy Blends come in two all natural scents: calming lavender and chamomile-infused Full-Spectrum Hemp Oil, and invigorating peppermint and rosemary in Hemp Oil.
How to Use Aromatherapy with Your Mask
- Unscrew the cap off of your Synchronicity Aromatherapy Roll-on, and simply apply it to the bridge of your nose, and temples.
- Wear your mask, and breathe as normal.
…Or if you have a favorite essential oil at home you love;
- Dilute a drop of your preferred essential oil blend in one tablespoon of water.
- Apply a drop or two of the mixture onto the mask along the bridge of your nose. This step will ensure the scent isn’t too strong and that the mask doesn’t get wet where you breathe.
- A wet mask is an ineffective mask! Dry any excess water.
- Wear your mask, and breathe as normal.
Protect Your Skin
Finally, one of the best ways to make your mask more comfortable is by taking care of your skin.
Mask discomfort is frequently the result of skin irritation. You might experience dry, chaffed ears or what I like to call an acne goatee. Luckily, the skin care industry is much older and wiser than the face mask explosion.
Mask Comfort for Dry Skin
If you have dry or sensitive skin, the edges of your mask and elastic bands are likely rubbing your ears and cheeks raw.
Double down your moisturizing efforts. Our Full-Spectrum Hemp Oil Facial Cream contains soothing aloe vera to calm skin and non-comedogenic Hemp Oil to create a hydrating barrier between your skin and your mask.
Cleanse and moisturize before and after wearing your mask.
Mask Comfort for Oily, Acne-Prone Skin
Oily skin and acne are exacerbated by the intense humidity of breathing in a mask. There isn’t much you can do about the breathing part, but you can protect your skin from becoming too moist.
Acne is caused by environmental irritants and your skin’s natural oil becoming trapped in your pores by dirt, makeup and dead skin cells.
Worse yet, bacteria love a warm, wet environment to grow.
Deprive them of a comfy home by keeping your face, mask and hands clean whenever you touch your face mask.
Use a facial cleanser for oily skin twice daily. If you’re still feeling sticky, you can use oil blotting sheets, or a non-alcohol based toner with tea tree. This will gently wipe away and absorb excess oil, to help bring balance to your skin throughout the day.
And If It’s Not Too Much to Ask…
Always wear your mask! In public, anyway. Wearing a face mask may feel inconvenient, but it’s very important to stop the spread of disease.
This blog is written by: Tee Corley is a freelance writer who works with Public Goods, a company that sells eco-friendly household essentials such as tree-free tissues, shampoo bars and silk dental floss. Check out their blog for a wide range of topics: everything from product storage tips and recycling advice to brand reviews and simple recipes.