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DO YOU KNOW HOW TO CHOOSE A CLOTH FACE MASK? FIND OUT HOW TO PROTECT YOURSELF

In this article, I want to show you which cloth face mask you should buy if you live in Switzerland. Why? Because firstly, textile masks are more sustainable alternatives to single-use surgical face masks.

According to the “Swiss National COVID-19 Science Task Force”, there are several options for safe protection:

  • Filtering facepiece (FFP) or FFP2/FFP3 masks,
  • surgical masks/ face masks,
  • certified reusable textile masks “Community Masks”- industrially produced textile masks.

CERTIFIED TEXTILE MASKS – “COMMUNITY MASK”


  • Recommended only for persons without symptoms and non-vulnerable groups.
  • Guaranteed efficiency for 5-20 washes (depending on the mask).
  • There are only two companies in Switzerland that received this certification. This Swisstextiles website lists where you can buy “community mask” online (the website is in German).
  • The EMPA (Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology) has tested “Community Mask” for splash protection & filter efficiency in a specially developed process.
  • TESTEX (independent Swiss testing and certification organization) covers the following reusability and comfort tests: air permeability, colorfastness to domestic washing, perspiration, and saliva, as well as dimensional change.
  • The label includes STANDARD 100 by OEKO-TEX® certification, which ensures that the masks have been tested for harmful substances.
Testex certified & EMPA tested Community Masks | source: Testex

PRACTICAL TIPS

I got my certified “Community mask” on Schoeller Textil Swiss. It is made in Europe, EMPA tested and TESTEX certified. And it was about 20 CHF.

It is washable at 60 degrees Celsius for 20 times. Which makes me wonder. Does it mean that these community masks can safely protect you 20 times only? If that’s the case then this textile face mask is a bit of an oxymoron. Firstly, it is made of polyester, which is not a sustainable material. Secondly, you will dispose of it after 20 washes.

If you decide to get a polyester mask, use a Guppyfriend laundry bag when you wash it. Guppyfriend washing bag is a special laundry bag that allows water to come through but keeps microplastics inside. Why?

Firstly, small microparticles are released in the water when you wash synthetic materials such as polyester. Secondly, they finish in water, fish digest it and later, it finishes in our bodies when we eat fish or drink water.

Did you know that you should clean and disinfect your reusable textile mask after every use? The best scenario is to have several masks. This way you can throw it in a laundry bin after use and take a new one. Check this article on Curated By Jennifer to learn more about taking care of your cloth mask as well as your skin.


NON-MEDICAL CLOTH FACE MASKS


currently wearing-swiss sustainable blog-cloth mask you should buy

APESIGNED

  • Material: upcycled cotton, reversible,
  • 3 layers (filter between the outer fabric and the lining),
  • specifications AFNOR for barrier masks are respected during production,
  • SPECIAL OFFER FOR YOU! You can purchase the masks HERE. Use code “MIRI10” to get 10% off at the checkout (this offer is valid until 30 September 2020, inclusive).

CALIDA

  • Material: organic cotton or Tencel ™ Lyocell,
  • 3 layers, compostable,
  • Cradle to Cradle ™ certified,
  • MADE IN GREEN by Oeko-Tex® certified,
  • made of leftover materials.
  • available online: https://www.calida.com/en-CH/Women/Masks/

JULIAN ZIGERLI

  • Material: cotton, polyester,
  • 3 layers, contains a certified filter between the outer fabric and the lining,
  • a flexible wire on top of the mask to adjust it to the nose, 
  • adjustable rubber bands.
  • available online: julianzigerli.com

Swiss Mask

  • three layers, anti-projection fleece, as well as a nose clip,
  • reusable after washing 50 to 100 times,
  • machine washable at 95° C (or boil in a saucepan).
  • available online: swissmask.org

If you decide to purchase a textile mask which is not a « community mask », check the following:

  • It must have 3 layers,
  • you should not be able to blow a candle with your mask on,
  • it should (at least) respect norms AFNOR.

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES:


How to wear a face mask – video

SHOP NON-MEDICAL CLOTH MASKS

Now, when you know which cloth mask you should buy, which type will you get? Did you find this article helpful?

Let me know in the comments below.

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