Aplat Mask FAQs


Shu
and the Aplat team shared these FAQs about their masks, which we thought would be helpful to pass along to you.

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SIZING

Q: Will the mask fit both men and women?
A: Our mask is designed to fit most adult faces. The origami design allows the mask to adjust to different face and nose shapes. For people with smaller faces, the mask will be roomier at the center, allowing for more space around the mouth and nose to breathe.

Q: What are the dimensions of the mask?
A: Our mask measures approximately 9.75” wide. The vertical height has a center band 2.75” in height with a top and bottom flap that extends up to 2" from the center band to cover the nose and chin, making the total height  approximately 6.75". Due to the handmade nature, there may be a few centimeters of variance between masks.

Q: Will the mask fit a teenager’s face?
A: Yes, our mask will adjust to fit most teenagers.

Q: Will the mask fit small children?
A: Our mask will fit most children 10 years and older. For younger children, the mask may be too wide for their face. We offer instructions on how to make our mask for younger children in our DIY notebook story here.

Q: Should my one year old wear a mask?
A: According to the CDC recommendations, children under the age of 2 should not wear a face mask.

  

MASK USE

Q: Do I need to wash the mask before using it?
A: Yes, we strongly recommend that the mask is washed before using for the first time. Please see the mask care question and answers below.

Q: The cotton feels scratchy and stiff. What do I do?
A: The cotton canvas will soften after washing. Please wash before wearing.

Q: Will adding a filter help?
A: We found this paragraph helpful from the New York Times article, "A User's Guide to Face Masks":
“Coffee filters and paper towels: The C.D.C. suggests inserting a coffee filter into your mask for extra protection. Missouri University of Science & Technology scientists found that using three coffee filters made it difficult to breathe. Adding a layer of paper towel in between two layers of fabric could make your homemade mask more efficient. An engineer at an air purifier firm ran his own test and found a single paper towel filters 23 percent of 0.3 microns and two paper towels filtered 33 percent.”

Q: Does the mask have a pocket for a filter?
A: No, our masks do not have a pocket for filters. Filters can be tucked in to the interior of mask.

Q: Where and what kind of filter do I put in the mask?
A: Adding a disposable filter is optional. You can add a folded paper towel or coffee filter sized 2, 3, or 4 for an added layer of protection. Place your disposable filter on the interior area and tuck the four corners under the fold on top and bottom to keep it in place.

Q: How can I make it easier to breathe while wearing the mask?
A:  Our mask design uses origami inspired folds to create space around the nose and mouth. When worn, the center should protrude out and away from the face like a beak. This allows for better breathability. When speaking with the mask on and you are at a minimum of six feet of distance from others, you can loosen the bottom fold temporarily so that others may hear you from a distance.

Q: How do I put the mask on?
A:  Follow these detailed steps:

  • Open the mask and pull a little slack on the cord loop at the top of your mask.
  • Hold the top butterfly flap of the mask on the bridge of your nose with one hand and hook the cord over the tops of each ear.
  • Grab the loose ends of the rope and pull behind your head to tighten.
  • Tie the cord at the base of the neck.
  • Pull the fold at center outward slightly like a beak to create space around the nose and mouth.
  • Adjust the fold at top and bottom to adjust to your face.
  • Adjust the position of the top rope to comfort.
  • Press all the edges down against the face to close off gaps.

Q: How do I take off my mask after I have worn it outside?
A: Follow these steps to take off your mask.

  • Untie your mask.
  • Pull the top rope up and over your head away from the face.
  • Be careful not to touch your eyes, nose, and mouth when removing your mask and wash hands immediately after removing.

Q: How do I store my mask when not in use?
A: When not in use, we recommend airing the mask out by hanging it in a place away from other objects, ideally in the sun or other open space area until a washing is needed. Do not store your used mask in a plastic bag. Not only is it bad for the earth, but the plastic does not allow air flow creating a breeding ground for germs and bacteria.

 

MASK CARE

Q: Can I machine wash and dry my mask?
A: Yes, our organic cotton masks are preshrunk and do not utilize elastic bands, so they stand up to frequent machine washing and drying really well. We recommend turning your mask inside out and tying the braided cord together in a loose knot before washing to avoid tangling.

Q: Should I wash in hot or cold water?
A: Per CDC guidelines, hot water is NOT necessary in the sanitization of your mask and we recommend you wash the mask in cold water with like colors.

Q: Can I machine dry my mask after washing?
A: Yes, our masks do not have elastic bands that can melt and are preshrunk so they are safe to throw in the dryer at low to normal setting. After drying lay mask flat with nose and chin flaps in and then fold in half to retain the shape. We recommend ironing for crisp folds.

Q: Should I use bleach to sanitize my mask?
A: Do not use bleach. Our organic cotton masks are made without the harsh chemicals of commercially grown cotton, and therefore, will last longer with proper care. Bleach will discolor the natural and organically dyed colors and the CDC states that machine washing and drying the mask is enough to sterilize it.

Q: How often should I wash my mask?
A: It depends on the usage of your mask. We recommend washing after each day of use.

 

MASK MATERIALS

Q: Is the cotton used to make the masks certified organic?
A: Yes, our preshrunk duck cotton is certified organic by the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS). It is grown without herbicides or pesticides, making our organic product better for you and better for the planet.

Q: Is the dye used for the color masks organic?
A: Yes, our organic cotton is dyed with eco-friendly, certified organic, food-safe dyes.

Q: What country is your organic cotton canvas sourced from?
A: Our organic cotton is produced in India and is certified organic from seed to shelf.

 

MASK EFFECTIVENESS

Q: Will the mask protect me from the COVID-19 virus?
A: The CDC recommends that everyone wear a mask or face covering to help slow the spread of the virus. Recent studies have found that cloth masks not only help protect others but also the wearer from infection.
Although these masks may help deter you from spreading COVID-19, they will not prevent you from getting it. While wearing any mask, you must follow CDC guidelines — maintain six feet of physical distance, wash your hands frequently and thoroughly, and do not touch your face.
Our masks are not a substitute for N95, surgical, or procedural masks.

Q: Do I still need to social distance while wearing my face mask?
A: Yes, always follow the guidelines of prevention provided by the CDC even while wearing a face mask. Social distance if possible, don't touch your face, and try not to touch your face mask. Wash your hands for 20 seconds after touching your face mask after it has been worn and exposed to contamination, and stay at home when you can. For more information, view the CDC guidelines here.

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Check out the Aplat Mask here, and read founder Shu Bertrand's story here.

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