Mistakes We’ve Made With Our Face Masks in the Laundry

Laundry may be a hard duty if you aren’t an expert, and it’s all too tempting to skip reading the tag and toss everything in the same load. There are several materials and care needs available, which might cause good cleaning practises to fall into the wayside. Regardless, certain objects should be treated with much more care than others—and it’s not just the cashmere sweater. Face masks, too, need special care.
What was once an infrequent piece of protective equipment for most of us is now a necessary part of our daily lives, and keeping them clean is critical to remaining healthy and safe. With so many guidelines and recommendations floating about, it may be difficult to keep on top of basic standards, much alone remember the proper technique to wash your reusable face mask.
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To remain safe and retain the protective characteristics of your masks, there are a few errors that many of us have made (and may continue to make) with reusable face masks that should be avoided. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and other specialists, fortunately, provide guidelines for properly care for your mask.
Reusable Face Masks: General Guidelines
According to the CDC, reusable face masks should be washed at least once a day and may be cleaned in a washing machine or by hand. Both do not need the use of specialised detergents. Masks may be dried in the dryer if washed in a washing machine, but they must be entirely dry before usage. The CDC recommends letting hand-washed masks to dry in the sun. If this isn’t an option, lay them out flat until they’re completely dry.
Mesh laundry bags are useful for keeping your mask separate from the rest of your apparel and making it easier to transfer to the dryer. For further protection, sanitizers such as chlorine bleach or pine oil might be utilised. Though they are not necessary when using hot water and a hot dryer, they are particularly useful in households with a sick person and are not required for daily washing.
These criteria, as well as the advice that follow, are particular to reusable face masks. Remember that single-use and disposable face masks should not be cleaned and should be discarded. Respirators, such as N95 and KN95 masks, may be reused a few times but must be carefully maintained for and not misused. This might result in a loose, poor fit and inadequate filtering. 1 Failure to wash face masks at all
Yes, it occurs, but it’s a major blunder that you should avoid at all costs. Masks may be easily forgotten when carried in purses, backpacks, and coat pockets, but they need to be cleaned, and not just a fast rinse. “A good detergent, time, and temperature are the keys to eliminating germs and thereby sterilising masks,” explains Wayne Edelman of Meurice Garment Care. “[The CDC] recommends a minimum temperature of 160°F (71°C) for at least 25 minutes.”
He also mentions that chlorine bleach may be useful, but only for a high degree of protection. “Again, to emphasise, time and temperature are important for decontamination, and you really want to have a germ-free mask to breathe through since we spend a lot of time in masks.