The number of coronavirus cases is increasing worldwide and many countries have closed boundaries and taken measures to limit the infection as much as possible. It is important that you do not panic, be careful and prepared and to follow the instructions given by the authorities.
World Health Organization and local health experts and governmental authorities remind via media that there are two important protective measures that we all should practice – wash our hands with soap and water (or use hand sanitizer) and wear a face mask. We have explained in a previous article the importance of proper hand washing and the most important facts that you need to know about coronavirus. While professional respiratory masks – N95 respirators, are required by the medical profession and are not recommended or not accessible to the general public and ordinary surgical masks disappeared from the market, we will show you how to make a DIY face mask to protect mouth and nose.
DIY face mask – Why should you wear one?
Do you need to wear a face mask? The World Health Organization emphasizes that a face mask should not give you a false security. It cannot protect healthy people from the virus due to the fact that most of these masks are moisturized after half an hour and can no longer offer effective protection against the coronavirus. Ordinary surgical masks are designed to prevent the surgeon from passing a virus to the patient and do not protect the doctor from pathogens. However, mouth and nose protection is very useful for those who are already infected, as they are a barrier and help prevent people passing the infection to other people and this helps to slow the spread of the virus. Even if it is a DIY face mask, this is one of the prevention and security measures that each of us must take. We remind you that you should also:
- Wash hands thoroughly 20 times a day
- Avoid touching the face
- Disinfect surfaces such as door handles at home
- Avoid crowds
- Avoid waiting in line
- If possible, stay at home
- Keep a distance of at least 2 meters from other people in the supermarket or in the pharmacy.
When should you wear a mask?
Despite the pandemic situation, life goes on and you will need to go to a supermarket, pharmacy, possibly to work. It is strongly recommended to wear a face mask when you go grocery shopping or when you have to wait in line. Make sure you keep the recommended distance of 1,5-2 meters. Even if you wear a DIY face mask, this helps reducing the risk of infection. If you touch infected surfaces the mask will prevent you touch your face with dirty hands.
DIY face mask: Step by step instructions
You can make a unique face mask from household materials. At first glance, such a homemade mask may look strange, but it works, and that is what is important. Before starting work, make sure that your hands are clean and disinfected. When you leave your home, pack a few face masks in a zipper storage bag so you can replace your mask, if necessary. If you replace your mask on the street, make sure you put the used one in a sealed bag and then put it into a rubbish bin. When you wear a DIY face mask, the inner layer with facial tissue should cover the nose and mouth with kitchen paper towel facing outward. Do not re-use DIY paper towel face masks. Make sure you washed your hands before taking off the mask, discard it and then wash hands again immediately.
You can make a mask from paper towel and a handkerchief and here is a guide how to do that.
You need the following materials:
- 2 sheets of paper towels
- 1 handkerchief
- 1.3 meters of elastic band, flat
- Floral wire
- Adhesive tape
How to make the mask:
Place the two sheets of paper towel on top of each other
Place the handkerchief over the kitchen paper and then cut in half. Two rectangles should appear.
Stick the short sides of the rectangles on with the adhesive tape
Make two holes on the short sides
Cut the floral wire and glue the piece to one long side of the rectangle. The flower wire gives the mask its semicircular shape and enables it to be fixed in the nose area.
Cut the elastic band into eight pieces, pull the two ends of four pieces through the left hole and tie the ends. Now pull the two ends of the remaining four pieces through the right hole and tie their ends too.
How to make a face mask for multiple uses
You can also sew a face mask for multiple uses. This mask has the advantage that you can wash it and then iron it. It is advisable, however, to use disposable masks and throw them away after using.
You will need:
- An old t-shirt
- Pack of wet wipes
- Elastic band, flat
- Sewing thread
Cut out two rectangles from the old t-shirt. Let 2-3 wet wipes dry out completely at room temperature. They work well as filters. Then lay the first rectangle on the table, place the dry wet wipes over it and cover it with the second rectangle. Make four-five folds towards the bottom of the fabric and then topstitch the five folds. Then sew all the three layers – the top layer of fabric with folds, the middle layer of wet wipes and the bottom layer of fabric together. Then attach the rubber band.
In conclusion, we will remind you that you can protect yourself against coronavirus by following the guidelines of the authorities. You can also help protect others from the Covid-19. In the event that you become infected with the virus and develop no symptoms, the mask will protect other people, your family, friends, colleagues, etc. Even if you are healthy, a DIY face mask is a physical barrier between your hands and will help you not touch your face, mouth and nose.