We have retooled our cat bed production and are now making reusable fabric face masks for public use.
Our fabric face masks:
- Are made right here in Washington State
- Feature a contour shape for fit and comfort
- Made with three layers of fabric, one creates a filter pocket
- Made with an ear loop option or behind the head elastic option
- Not guaranteed to prevent disease, but are made in response to CDC information
Why should you wear a mask?
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that you cover your face when you’re out in public and can’t follow social distancing guidelines, you can read the CDC recommendation here. Evidence suggests that the coronavirus can be spread while talking or breathing, so wearing a mask can help to prevent you from unknowingly spreading the virus. It’s still very important to wash your hands frequently and to practice social distancing.
What’s the proper way to wear a mask?
Wash your hands first, then with clean hands, cover your nose and mouth with the mask and secure it, making sure there are no gaps between your face and the mask. Once your mask is on, it’s important not to touch the front of your mask. Refrain from adjusting or pulling down the front of your mask while you’re wearing it and remember not to touch your face. When you’re ready to take your mask off, remove it from behind by loosening the ear loops or ties and pulling it away from your face. Put your used mask in a dedicated laundry bag and immediately clean your hands with soap and water or a hand sanitizer.
How can you clean a washable mask?
After you've been wearing a face mask you need to assume it is "contaminated" and should be careful of how you remove it, store it, and wash it.
- Grasp the corner or ear loop to remove and pull away from the face
- Place the used mask in a "contaminated" storage area until you wash it
- Wash fabric masks after each use
- Remove and discard any filtering material you put in the mask
- Immediately wash hands after removing the mask
- Wash with soap and water, buy hand or in a machine
- Wash hands after any time you handle contaminated clothing or masks
Cleaning the masks that we make
Most of our masks are 100% cotton and subject to shrinking or color run if washed in hot water. Using a hot dryer can also cause shrinking. Here are some additional tips for washing these fabrics. Remember that any used face mask is contaminated and you need to also follow safe handling procedures (see the section above)
- Our face masks can be hand washed or machine washed. I usually wash a few of mine at a time in a mesh lingerie bag
- New cotton fabrics, especially bold or dark colors, will often bleed with the first wash (or two). A product called Shout Color Catcher works well to capture the fabric dye. I was able to buy these at a local grocery store. You can avoid drastic color run by using cold water. This article has information on using vinegar or salt
- If the face masks ball or wad up during the wash then pull, stretch and smooth the fabric out while still damp
- I hang dry or flat dry to avoid wadding up and excess shrinking
- It's OK to iron face masks made of cotton fabric unless they have an inner layer of a substrate that should not be ironed. It's OK to iron all of the cotton fabric masks that we make. Do not iron elastic
- For more information on washing and storing face masks, and for managing fogging if you wear glasses, see this blog post
Approximate dimensions of the first two production runs of our face mask design. Not all masks are these measurements
What are we working on next?
We now have made face masks for kids, and face masks sized for teens and women. In later August or early September 2020 we will be introducing a new face mask design that is reversible, has an easier to access filter pocket, can have a nose wire inserted, and has an adjustable headband.