September 14, 2020

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New Nose Dart Face Mask Design with Adjustable Strap

We have a new face mask design! We think it is likely that people will be wearing face masks for a long time, so we wanted to develop a pattern with adjustable fit, that allows vital components to be replaced, and is easier to use. After making hundreds of face masks we knew what design details we like and what we wanted to improve. 

Our new face mask design is made in size Large for men/adults and size Medium for women/teenagers. The mask is fitted to the face with a nose dart and has a flat front without a center seam. This creates a good shape on the face without putting a seam right down the middle, as you can see in this photo:

Our reversible face mask design allows you to have two different looks! Our new face mask design is shaped for the face with a nose dart and does not have a seam down the center front so there is more space to show the design of a fabric. 

This new design is also totally reversible, so we are making them with very different fabrics on each side. 

Our new face mask style is shaped with a nose dart, has an adjustable head band, has a filter pocket, and is totally reversible. This face mask is totally reversible so you have two different looks! 

 

The design has a wide filter pocket that is accessed from underneath. 

The filter pocket is accessible at the bottom and it is wide and easy to use. Tension will hold the filter in place. The filter pocket is wide and easy to access, just lift up the bottom edge. These masks are made with three layers of fabric and you can see the third layer of fabric here. 

Long Lasting Face Mask that You Can Update

We think people may be using face masks for a long time, and not just because of the Covid-19 pandemic. Some people may continue to use face masks during cold and flu season or may want to have personal protection due to immune issues, so we wanted to create high quality accessories that allow for flexibility and durability while also being easy to use, so we designed this mask with removable or replaceable components. We've continued to use the high quality woven quilting cotton fabrics we're already known for, as they have been very popular with the contour fit face masks we've made for children, teenagers/women and adults. Elastic can wear out over time so we decided not to use it at all. These face masks are shipped with a narrow ribbon headband and sliding bead to adjust the length and tension of the wrap around your head. If you have hair you can secure the ribbon into place with a barrette or bobby pin. If you don't have hair then this band can be easily replaced with a narrow strip of knit fabric, like from a t-shirt. Another thing that works well is a shoelace or leather shoelace. We are excited that this design allows you to control and customize your wearing experience and if you discover something that works for you, let us know so we can share your experience. 

Replacing and Customizing the Head Strap

Does the head strap slip around on your head? Do you want a head strap that grips? You might have better success with a leather shoelace, stretchy t-shirt fabric or even a strip of elastic or elastic cording. We recommend using something around 54" long so there is plenty of room to expand when you're putting the mask on. 

A strip cut from an old t-shirt can make a comfortable headband. In the photo below we cut a 5/8" wide strip from a 2XL t-shirt then pulled the strip firmly all along the length and it will curl up like this. See how it looks like a tube now? 

Old t-shirts are great to use to make a drawstring tie, cut to about 5/8" wide then pull the fabric and it will curl up

Old t-shirts are great to use to make a drawstring tie. Cut a strip about 5/8" wide then pull the fabric and it will curl up

Use a big safety pin to thread the t-shirt fabric into the face mask. Bigger safety pins will be easier to use, but it it's too large it won't fit through the tunnel! Test the size before you get too far along. 

The perfect safety pin is the biggest one that will still fit through the casingThe perfect safety pin is the biggest one that will still fit through the casing, so test it before you get too far along

Nose dart style face mask has a fully adjustable headband, a style that can work well if you wear glasses or hearing aids. This face mask is made with three layers of woven quilting cotton fabric, is reversible, has an easy to use filter pocket, and a channel to hold a nose wire. Made in USA by The Cat Ball, LLC

The mechanical drawing in the upper left shows a side view of this face mask design, and the stitches that create a channel that can be used to hold a nose wire. 

 Some People Want Nose Wires

Our main goal with this face mask design was to create a face mask with adjustable sizing and a filter pocket, and we know that some people like nose wires. Nose wires add a layer of complexity and we wondered things like: will the metal be washable? Will it rust when washed? Will the wire poke holes in the fabric when it is washed? Will the wire cause a reaction to skin? What we decided to do is design the mask so that a nose wire could be added if desired. The mask has a stitched channel that is open on each end so you can replace any nose wire on demand and continue to customize the mask. It can be kind of tricky to insert a nose wire, here is what we suggest:

  • Get a long tool that will fit into the nose wire channel, a chopstick may work well. We've used a chopstick in this photo.
  • Insert your chopstick so that it passes beyond the dart seam at center front of the mask. Keep the chopstick in there and wiggle the nose wire in over it. The chopstick will help you to guide the nose wire in.

Inserting a nose wire of your choice in the face maskWe've inserted a chopstick in the channel where the nose wire goes, and use the chopstick to help create a pathway to insert the nose wire

Washing Face Masks

How do you wash these things? They are made of cotton fabric and the instructions are the same as for our other face masks. If you are washing in a machine we recommend:

  • Tie the strings together when you wash so they don't pull out
  • We recommend washing inside a mesh bag (Pro-Tip: just drop used masks directly in the bag and store them there until washing time!)
  • Heat shrinks cotton, so we recommend cool water to preserve fabric color and size of mask
  • Bleach till change the color, so we do not advise using bleach on these fabrics
  • We like to hang dry to reduce wrinkling. If you use the dryer then keep the mask in the mesh bag and be aware that a hot setting could shrink the cotton fabric

Have you learned any tips or tricks that make face masks easier to wear? We'd love to hear from you. 

 

 

 

 

 


Jennifer Boaro
Jennifer Boaro

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