As the pandemic has progressed, one thing has become increasingly clear: face masks help stop the spread of coronavirus. Scientists have also been able to study the different types of masks that are available to gain a solid understanding of the best types to use to keep the public—and even the person wearing the face covering—safest. Now, a new study has added to the mounting evidence that your mask isn’t fully protecting you if it doesn’t have at least three layers of fabric. Read on for the details, and for more advice on what masks not to use, check out If Your Face Mask Has One of These, Stop Using It Immediately.
Researchers at Virginia Tech University tested 11 different types of face masks, including nine cloth masks made from materials such as coffee filters, a cotton T-shirt, and other fabrics as well as a face shield and surgical mask, Yahoo! News reports. And there was a clear winner.
“We recommend now based on this study that people use a three-layer mask,” Linsey Marr, PhD, a leading aerosol scientist at Virginia Tech and co-author of the study, said during a press conference on Nov. 23. Specifically, Marr recommends a mask in which “the outer two layers are a tightly woven but flexible material that allows the mask to conform to your face,” with a layer made of vacuum bag or filtration material in the middle. If that’s the case, your face covering could allow filtration as high as 90 percent, the researchers found.
The findings back up a study published in the journal Science Advances in September out of Duke University. For that report, researchers tested 14 different masks’ ability to block respiratory droplets, and they found that other than N95s, a three-layer surgical mask allowed the fewest number of droplets to get by its barrier. And coming in third was a three-layer mask with polypropylene acting as a filter between two layers of cotton.
Read on to find out more about how your mask performed in the study, and for more on what other health officials have to say about PPE, check out The Only Reason Dr. Fauci Doesn’t Endorse a National Mask Mandate.
Read the original article on Best Life.