Until a few months ago, wearing a face covering was considered superfluous or being overcautious. In some cases, it could even be misconstrued as discourtesy to the person next to you. Today, as COVID-19 continues to spread across the United States, the importance of wearing a face covering, particularly a face mask, has never been more emphasized. Surprisingly, many people still refuse to do so. They argue that wearing a face mask, especially the thick kind, makes breathing difficult and therefore could lead to respiratory problems. Anyone who regularly wears a face mask can easily refute that. Breathing is undeniably slightly harder when you have a piece of fabric covering your nose, but the extra effort you have to exert is generally not enough to be a cause for concern for the average person. The truth is the benefits of wearing a face mask overshadow the drawbacks many people claim it has. Here are three reasons why wearing a face mask should be normalized.
- It helps prevent the spread of airborne viruses or those that are transferred through respiratory droplets.
- If you are immunocompromised or have an existing respiratory problem that makes you susceptible to allergens such as dust and pollen, wearing a face mask can help prevent symptoms of your condition.
- Depending on the kind of face mask you’re wearing or the filter insert it has, you can safely work with potent chemicals or fumes.
That being said, incorporating face mask wearing in your daily routine can be costly. With supply running low due to the pandemic, face protection products cost higher than normal. This is why a lot of people are starting to use washable face masks, which are made of ordinary cloth. The problem with washable cloth face masks is that they are not as effective in blocking microorganisms and particles as N95 or surgical face masks. That’s where filter inserts come in. These are pads inserted in cloth face masks to improve their performance. There are numerous filters available on the market today but not all of them are good. Some are made of poor-quality materials, while others lack the required efficiency to filter out microscopic allergens or pathogens. A MERV 16 filter is one of the best filter inserts for face masks. Manufactured and distributed by trusted brands such as DragonWise, this face protection product
is packed with valuable features you won’t find elsewhere. Let’s have a look at the features that set a MERV 16 filter apart from other commercially available products.
MERV 16 filter fabric consists of three layers of materials:
This is a nonwoven textile made from synthetic thermoplastic polymer. It is soft, lightweight, and easy-to-clean, making it the perfect filtration material. Polypropylene fabric is naturally robust as well, and resists moisture and microbial growth.
Polyurethane Nanofiber Fabric
Engineered with particles that boost the properties of a material, this textile is well-known for its super hydrophobicity or extreme water resistance. Apart from water or moisture, nanofiber fabric can also repel odor, a quality that’s well suited for a face mask. This textile is strong and offers excellent filtration of small particles.
Spunbond Polyester Fabric
Although plastic-based like polypropylene, polyester is manufactured in a different way. Instead of instantly emerging as a finished product, this textile starts out as polyester filaments and laid on a continuous belt before being bonded through hot roll calendering.
With this structure, a MERV 16 filter
proves efficient in fortifying cloth face masks against airborne contaminants. Not only does it offer 95% filtration of 0.3 micron particles as a standalone material and 99% when worn with a face mask, but it also maintains the ultra-thin, lightweight, and breathable qualities that users are looking for. It’s washable and sanitizable, too, which consequently addresses the cost problem.
Most face masks can block large particles such as dust and allergens. Although, dust and allergens are generally small, they are quite large when compared to a lot of other contaminants that a face mask is made to block. By inserting a MERV 16 filter in your face mask, you can protect yourself against even smaller and more harmful things in the air, including bacteria and viruses. It has a higher filtration performance than cotton and furnace filters.