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Face Masks 101

What is something we never thought would be a part of everyday life at the beginning of this year? Face masks! The CDC supports face mask use to help protect others in case you’re infected but aren’t showing symptoms. Many businesses are now requiring the use of masks and schools are considering requiring masks when they reopen in the fall. Since it is recommended we all wear face masks, what are some good face mask options? Read our Face Masks 101 and discover different face mask styles as well as wearing and cleaning tips.

Types of Masks

N95 Masks

Everyone has heard a lot about N95 masks. These masks are intended for healthcare workers. They are made of tighter fitting material than regular masks and they filter 95% of airborne particles. Surgical masks are less thick than the N95s but protect healthcare workers from contact with splashes.

Cloth Masks

Cloth masks are recommended for healthcare workers who are not providing direct patient care and people who are going out in public. But why are their so many different styles? Below are different things to consider when shopping for the right fabric face mask to ensure you find the mask for you.

Face Mask Designs:

Woman wearing blue, pink, and purple Simply Southern Face Mask
Simply Southern Face Mask
  • Some cloth mask options include built in filters. This can provide an extra level of protection. Other masks, including our Simply Southern face masks, have a pocket where filters can be inserted and removed as needed.
  • In fabric masks, it has been found that masks with more than one layer of fabric have a greater filtration efficiency.
  • Microfiber masks compared to cotton are more lightweight, comparably softer, and less bulky, especially if the mask has two or more layers.

Face Mask Fit:

Women in her car wearing Lotus and Luna Wide Face Mask
Lotus and Luna Wide Face Mask

Face Mask Straps:

  • Elastic straps are the most common for masks. Some brands like Lauren James have cotton straps that are soft on the ears and are not adjustable.
  • Other masks offer adjustable straps. Brands like Girly Girl offer this option to fit comfortably behind the ears.
  • Another face mask strap option is made with strings you tie and secure around the base of your neck and the middle of your skull.

Tips For Wearing & Removing Face Masks

  • Wash your hands before putting on your mask.
  • Put it over your nose and mouth and secure it under your chin.
  • Try to fit it snugly against the sides of your face.
  • When taking it off handle only by the ear loops or ties.
  • Fold the outside corners together, to avoid contamination.
  • Be careful to avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth when removing and wash your hands immediately after removal.
  • Don’t forget to wash your mask regularly!

Tips For Washing Your Mask

Experts suggest washing your cloth mask after every use. For those who only use their mask intermittently, washing after every couple of days is acceptable. It is important to note that washing insertable filters will reduce their effectiveness. Filters are more delicate than cloth masks, so hand washing filters is suggested when needed. Insertable filters for the most part are meant for one- time use, but again, it depends on how long you are wearing your mask.

Cloth masks usually have the option to be dried. However, keep in mind that drying your mask has the potential to shrink it, damage the elastic straps or nosepiece, and lose its shape. Best practices for cleaning your mask includes washing the mask in hot water with a detergent of your choice and air drying afterwards. When you are not wearing your mask you should always store it in a clean place.

When purchasing your mask be sure to read the special care instructions as they will differ depending on which mask you choose.

Face Mask 101 Style

You aren’t boring, so your mask doesn’t have to be either! Fabric masks have now quickly become a form of self-expression with fun prints, solid colors, and screen prints on them. They have easily become the newest fashion statement with some fashion brands designing matching outfits and accessories to your face mask. To find your face mask style, here are just some of the face mask options and styles we carry.

  • Girly Girl face masks have all the styles a girl could want from bright solid colors to patterns.
  • Z Supply carries some wild options in masks with animal prints.
  • Lotus and Luna offers fun mandala and Hawaiian inspired designs.
  • Aftco carries buff style masks and neck gaiters that can also be used for fishing and lawn care activities.
  • Lauren James has styles for him and for her. With solid color options to keep it simple and pattern options to help mix it up.
Man and woman wearing blue Aftco neck gaiters
Aftco Neck Gaiters

Be on the lookout for more masks coming in over the next couple of months. There will be collegiate fask masks, Simply Southern masks, and masks by Miss Me just to name a few!


We also have a new hands-free Oventure Accessory! This tool is easily accessible because it can stay on your keychain, and it can be wiped down to disinfect. You can use the hook on it to help you open doors or the end to press buttons or keypads without having to touch them!


Eagle Eye Outfitters is family run outdoor apparel and fashion retailer. Shop online or stop by our retail store in Dothan, AL to browse our full face mask selection.