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How To Make A Fabric Mask For Donation

Please note, the instructions are and materials are for personal and community use. These are not for a health care setting.

















Above are only a few of the many great resources on how to make masks for the community. To make the safest and most effective masks please adhere to these important DO's and DON'Ts when making masks to donate:

  • Avoid making masks if you are sick or think you might be getting sick. 

  • Avoid making masks if you have been told you have a multi-drug resistant organism like MRSA or C. diff., or if you have any open or draining wounds. 

  • Keep all face mask materials away from household pets. 

  • Be sure the area in which you are working is clean (sanitize all surfaces with a disinfectant) before making masks. 

  • And, be sure to perform hand hygiene before touching mask materials. 

  • If you are sharing the community masks you are making with others, masks should be washed before wear.

Before You Pick Your Pattern and Supplies … Read These Mask-Making Fundamentals 

  • The face-covering fabric should be tightly woven 100% cotton. If you can see through it, it is not tightly woven. If a strand of it melts rather than burns when lit with a match or lighter, it is not cotton.

  • Preshrink the face-covering fabric by washing in hot water and drying on the highest setting.

  • The pattern you choose may vary yet the mask should be at least two layers. Some designs use three layers with a pocket for filter fabrics.  

  • The fit you are striving for includes adequate chin to nose coverage. Some designs include inserting a bendable wire across the nose bridge. Designs with wire include instruction on what types of wire work well.

  • It is helpful to define the outward-facing and inward-facing side in some way to help the user avoid flipping sides between use. This is easily accomplished by choosing different fabrics for each side.  If that is not possible, add a small mark (X) on one outside corner with a fabric marking pen (sharpie works).

  • The strap designs also vary with the pattern and people who wear masks for prolonged periods tend to prefer fabric tie straps to elastic that goes behind ears.

  • Choose designs with your end-user in mind and with consideration for materials on-hand. Solid-colored masks may be more versatile for the general public.  Elastic is getting hard to find at the present time.


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