Resources for Choosing High Quality Masks
- Project N95 has devoted itself to helping people navigate the tricky task of choosing masks and finding reliable vendors. They have specific recommendations for kids too:
- NYTimes Wirecutter also independently verified the quality of many types of masks. They have recommendations for both kids and adults, recommendations for exercise, etc.
- The Mask Nerd on twitter, a.k.a. Aaron Collins, is very helpful. He independently tests masks – kids, adults, singers, etc. Lots of good info in his threads. Kids mask tests link. Adult mask tests link.
- “Your Local Epidemiologist (YLE)” is written by Dr. Katelyn Jetelina, MPH PhD. This article has some information on masks in this article, and pointers to specific helpful studies and videos by the Mask Nerd.
- USA Today article about choosing children’s masks.
- MPR article about choosing masks and avoiding fakes.
Don’t Have Time for Research?
Project N95, The Mask Nerd, and the NYTimes Wirecutter, all mentioned above, recommend Powecom KN95s purchase from https://bonafidemasks.com/. We have zero connection to Bonafide Masks or Powecom and these are not affiliate links, but we have purchased and used their masks. They come in two sizes. The small is good for adults with a smaller face or some kids. Groups of people can join together in an order and significantly bring down the price of the masks to around 55 cents each.
We have also used the Harley N95s from Bonafide Masks, since we know they are a reputable source. Again, we have zero connection to Harley and this are not affiliate links. We have found the Harleys better at prevent glass fogging than the Powecom masks.
Many good Twin Cities folk prefer 3M N95 masks. Many are very hard to find, but Home Depot has been carrying the Aura mask. Again, we have no affiliation with Home Depot or 3M.
The Powercome KN95 mentioned above for adults comes in a small that works for some kids (too big for toddlers).
The Mask Nerd and NYTimes Wirecutter, recommend a mask for kids (and adults) called a Happy Mask that a number of us have tried. )Mask Nerd retested happy mask after washing the mask and found reduced performance.) Their masks are sold through a waitlist system to be sure everyone can eventually get one. You can join the waitlist here. The kids size small was small enough for a 2 year old and provided a secure fit.
Per the CDC, about 60% of KN95s sold in the USA are fake and don’t meet NIOSH requirements. So be sure to follow the guidance in the sources at the top of the page to get a truly protective mask.