Face masks

  • Do you wear a mask or other face covering? 6

    1. Anytime I am out (3) 50%
    2. En route to and while shopping (1) 17%
    3. Only while shopping (1) 17%
    4. Rarely (1) 17%
    5. Never (0) 0%

    We were all initially told that wearing masks did not help us, as they did nothing to protect the wearer, only protecting others in contact with the wearer (and his/her “droplets”).

    Earlier this month, health officials began recommending that everyone wear a mask or some type of face covering anytime outside, precisely TO protect others. In some places, this is even becoming mandatory.

    How do you feel about wearing a mask? What kind of mask or face covering do you wear?

  • I use it all time on street, shops etc., Only time when I pull it down is when I'm with the dog in totally open air without anyone even close!

  • I have been searching mercadolibre for a facemask of the bigote and his big fake smile and fake teeth ......no luck yet......

  • It's compulsory here so no choice but to. Won't have to wear it tomorrow as we're not allowed to set foot outside the front door from 5pm this evening until 9am Monday morning without good excuse.

    Just for Splinter....:rimg::rimg::rimg::rimg:

  • Just for Splinter....:rimg::rimg::rimg::rimg:

    Meant to add the 5pm curfew siren is back or to be more accurate it never went away in the first place. Seems if we're inside with the windows closed and the TV on it's hard to hear....especially if the wind is blowing in the wrong direction.

  • My husband has taken to practically body-slamming me across the street if anyone is approaching within a block. He agrees with you about the niceties at this time.

    Did you read my attachment about shortcomings and strengths of various types of mask? I learned that ours are practically worthless, and am going to need to improvise something else.

    • Helpful

    Here’s the article. Sorry - didn’t think about the paywall. (our masks are just surgical masks too - - little did we know of their limitations -)

    The good face mask guide: which ones work against coronavirus?

    Are surgical masks better than cycling masks – and how about a simple scarf wrapped around your neck? We explain everything you need to know

    ByJoe Shute, SENIOR FEATURE WRITER17 April 2020 • 3:49pm

    Take a deep breath and prepare yourself for the latest Covid-19 essential soon to sweep the nation. After months of being instructed not to trouble ourselves with wearing masks during thecoronavirus outbreak, it has become a hot topic once again.

    Sir Patrick Vallance, Britain’s chief scientist, has admitted in recent days the current advice that people should not wear face masks in public is under review. His comments follow those made by Dr David Nabarro, a senior British scientist with the World Health Organisation (WHO) who has claimed people will have to get accustomed to a “new reality” of wearing a facial covering while out in public.

    Masks are routinely worn in China, South Korea and other countries in the Far East which have dealt with previous coronaviruses in recent memory. At the beginning of this outbreak, much of the talk in the West was of how mask-wearing was a cultural issue and the scientific evidence was scant.


    Until now the Department of Health and Public Health England (PHE) have refused issuing face masks to members of the public as a matter of orthodoxy. However increasingly they appear to be isolated in this position. The Centers for Disease Control in the US, which previously followed the UK approach, is now recommending Americans wear ‘cloth-face coverings’ when they are out in public.

    In Europe the likes of Germany and Spain are all including face masks and other forms of personal protective equipment (PPE) in their lockdown exit strategies, with commuters in Madrid being handed masks as restrictions on movement slowly start to be lifted.

    According to Trisha Greenhalgh, a professor in primary health care at Oxford University, the evidence so far has focused on whether the masks can stop a wearer from being infected when in fact the realisation is gradually dawning that if we all wear even rudimentary masks there will be a lot fewer germs floating around in the first place.

    “It doesn’t have to be perfect,” Prof Greenhalgh says. "If you were wearing a mask to protect yourself from everybody else’s droplets it would need to meet official standards. But we are talking about everybody as good citizens wearing them to protect other people.”


    So from home-made versions crafted out of hoover bags and panty liners (yes, really) to bandanas that transform even the most genteel Home Counties shopper to roadside bandit, to the urban cycle masks beloved by Gwyneth Paltrow that make the rest of us resemble a poorly-equipped Power Ranger. The question, naturally, is what kind of face mask do you have to hand and how can you wear yours better?

    The most common design that everyone clambered to buy from Amazon in the early days of lockdown. Effective to a point, protecting the wearer against large droplets although not so much with airborne particles due to the loose fit. They are also only useful for a limited period of time as once they become damp through a person’s breath – which can happen in as little as 15 minutes – they become permeable.

    The masks also cannot be re-used and must be disposed of after wearing. Which is possibly bad news to all those you spot wearing theirs under their chin as they answer their phone / sip their coffee / go for a crafty cigarette: once removed from the mouth they cannot be put back on again.

    Note to NHS and care home staff: current guidelines state the masks can provide some protection if standing more than a metre from infected patients.

    The most effective mask in circulation (although still in critically short supply). The masks take their name from their ability to screen out 95 per cent of airborne particles. Experts do not recommend the public use these masks as they are intended for healthcare workers in close contact with coronavirus patients and require careful fitting around the face. The mask is only properly effective if worn with full PPE.

    Top of the range are the so-called ‘urban air masks’ developed by the Swedish firm Airinum, which sold out after Gwyneth Paltrow was spotted modelling one and are now being peddled for hundreds of pounds on online auction sites. Fredrik Kempe, the co-founder of the Swedish luxury brand, says daily sales have rocketed beyond 10 times what is normal.

    The rest of us must make-do with the sort of neoprene anti-pollution face masks first modelled by Hannibal Lecter and later taken up by overzealous cyclists in a rose-tinted pre-Covid age when all we had to worry about was dying early from air pollution. The masks remain untested with regard to coronavirus and don’t have to abide by the same standards as medical equipment, so check their filters are N95 grade (or an equivalent).

    They also need to be washed or have their filters changed regularly, depending on the design.

    A 2013 study by Public Health England (PHE) looked at the various suitability of household materials to filter bacterial and viral aerosols when used as masks. Vacuum cleaner bags seemed to be particularly good; less so, breathable materials such as 100 per cent cotton, linen and silk.

    However, there is no evidence that your mask needs to be made with any particular expertise or care to be effective for controlling the spread of germs. Professor Trisha Greenhalgh has created her own mask out of a walking bandana with a panty liner folded inside which she currently wears when she leaves the house. “Waterproof, sterile and thin, they are just the thing,” she says.

    A recent study conducted in South Korea found that if you have COVID-19 and cough on someone from eight inches away, wearing a cotton mask will reduce the amount of virus you transmit to that person by 36 times. At a press briefing earlier this month the US president Donald Trump even claimed scarves were frequently "better" than masks. In actual fact the Centers for Disease Control guidance states that scarves and bandanas (which are broadly deemed to be similarly effective) should be used as a last resort when masks are not available.

    Now recommended for public use by the US health authorities, bandanas are also catching on in the UK. This week Joanne Millburn has started a new Birmingham-based business, Millie’s Masks, designing cotton bandanas inspired by her 10-year-old daughter. Joanne, who in normal times is a wedding dress maker, says she has received 100 orders since setting up. Disturbingly the skull pattern is so far the most popular, though she says other designs are available. “The masks are not going to stop people getting the virus but certainly they will help prevent its spread,” she says.

    Where once you would don one for insulating your basement, suddenly the humble builder’s dust mask has created the sort of levels of demand that have led to hour-long queues even to access the B&Q website.

    Provide a tight-fit which scientists say is essential to blocking out airborne particles. As with other makeshift Covid masks, people have taken to spraying them with a high percentage alcohol spray in order to sterilise it between wearing. However do so with care, as studies in China have suggested this can lower filtering efficiency.