2. How Do You Properly Wash a Reusable Face Mask?

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The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) provides guidelines for either machine or hand washing cloth face masks.

For machine washing, wash your mask as you would (and with) your regular laundry. It’s fine to use your regular laundry detergent. Determine the water temperature based on the needs of the other clothes you’re also washing, unless your reusable face mask is hot pink in a load of white towels. In other words, follow regular laundry washing guidelines as you would with clothes and linens.

For hand washing, the CDC recommends using a solution of 4 teaspoons of bleach per quart of water. The water should be at room temperature. Soak the face mask for about 5 minutes, then thoroughly rinse it with room temperature or cool water.

Make sure your face mask is completely dry before using it again. Either machine dry it on high heat, or lay flat to air dry in a warm area.

1. How Do I Know If the Mask Is Protecting Me?

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If you’ve chosen a cloth face mask made properly and you’re washing it after every use, it should be helping protect you from coronavirus spread. That said, make sure to check that it fits right and you’re wearing it properly.

The CDC recommends a face mask that covers both your mouth and your nose. This is crucial, as the mask is there to protect you from inhaling or ingesting respiratory droplets of the virus.

The mask should fit snugly and comfortably against your face, while still allowing you to breathe. It should also be tucked under your chin for better coverage.

Now that your reusable face mask is made well, freshly washed, and fits correctly, you can enhance your virus protection by practicing social distancing, washing your hands, and sheltering at home when possible.

Related: Best Way to Store Your Face Mask
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