Friday, April 24, 2020

What are the Differences Between Masks for COVID-19?

Staying healthy is more important than ever in the time of COVID-19. In fact, to help curb the spread of this incredibly contagious virus, many states across the nation are requiring citizens to wear masks anytime they go into a public place. You may have heard, though, that not all masks for COVID-19 are created equal. It’s important to understand the differences in these masks before you run out and purchase your first order – or, more likely right now, click the “Add to Cart” button. This guide can help you select the best masks for you and your employees!

Cloth Masks

Right now, many people are having a hard time getting their hands on surgical or N95 masks. Because of this, there has been a strong uptick of people sewing cloth masks at home, generally using cotton quilt fabric.

Although these masks are better than nothing, according to the National Center for Biotechnology Information, they aren’t ideal for blocking virus transmission. In fact, wearing one of these masks does more for the people around you than it does for you. If you have a cough or are displaying symptoms of COVID-19, wearing this type of mask can help contain your germs.

However, if you can get your hands on a better mask, it’s highly recommended since these are usually about ½ as effective as a surgical mask.

Surgical Masks

Surgical masks are essentially disposable versions of reusable cloth masks. They work similarly in that they protect other people from the germs of the wearer. While these masks work twice as well as cloth masks, they still don’t stand up to viruses like COVID-19 very well.

There are three different ratings for surgical masks, depending on risk of exposure to bodily fluids. If you only have access to surgical masks during this pandemic, you’ll want to go with the highest level of protection to avoid spreading this virus.


By far, the most ideal mask for preventing the spread of COVID-19 is a respirator. These types of masks come in a variety of standards. The most common ones you’ll hear about in reference to the novel coronavirus, though, are N95, KN95, and FFP.

N95 and KN95 Masks

N95 and KN95 masks are equally protective. The only real difference is that KN95 is the Chinese standard for respirators as opposed to American standards. The important part is that they both block about 95% of airborne particles, significantly reducing your chances of catching COVID-19. These are the types of masks that most medical professionals are using right now.

FFP1, FFP2, and FFP3

Of these masks, FFP3 masks have the top filtration rating, preventing up to 99% of particles from breaking through the barrier. FFP2 are similar to N95 and KN95 masks with a 94% filtration rate.

Get Masks for COVID-19 From Skylight

Right now, many factories that usually produce promotional products have switched production to PPE in order to help protect our heroes on the frontlines: medical professionals, grocery store clerks, custodians, the list goes on. This puts us in a unique position to help people with their needs while providing a lending hand to our community.

We recently set up an online shop where you can purchase PPE for your employees, including surgical masks, KN95 respirators, and branded custom face covers. We’re also carrying face shields, goggles, gloves, and a number of other protective items to help keep you and your employees safe and healthy.

Additionally, we are donating 10% of the proceeds from all orders straight to Maryland organizations serving our communities and our neighbors. You can check out the shop here or contact your sales rep directly for more information! More questions? Give us a call today at 410.879.8401.

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