Best Face Mask
The BeatBasic Cotton Face Cover is a versatile, two-mask-pack at a reasonable price point. This plain black, durably crafted cotton mask is easy to wear with any outfit choice. It can be dressed up for a night out on the town or dressed down with gym clothes when you're looking to get your sweat on. With comfortable ear straps and a malleable nose bridge wire, this set is a great all-around option. Breathable cotton and an adjustable, ergonomic shape help guide air down and out rather than up, keeping glasses from fogging up. The BeatBasic is also machine washable and durable enough to withstand many washes.
While the simplistic, sleek black offers versatility, we wish there were more colors and patterns available. The BeatBasic is only available in one other design, a fun galaxy print. This mask would score a few more points for style if it were offered in additional color and pattern options. The only other gripe we have is that the ear loops are not adjustable. It fit most of our testers just fine, but some complained about the tension causing discomfort. However, this is a great minimalist option for the workday, the gym, or cocktails with coworkers.
Non-Award Winner Error: gearID #916505
[award=2, 916505]Great Value for Disposable[/award]
Number of Masks: 25 | Main Material: Not stated
The EasyEast Face Mask is a 25-pack of pleated, disposable medical masks. These face masks sport stretchy ear loops that are comfortable and fit a wide array of face sizes. While the loops are not adjustable, we found that tying a small knot works just as well. The fabric is pleated, which helps with face fit and breathability. The nose wire is easily adjusted by simply pinching where you'd like it to be tighter. This wire helps keep the mask on your face without feeling too tight. The nose bridge wire can also help with glasses fog but does not mitigate it completely.
Since these masks are disposable, they do not withstand liquids very well, making them a little difficult to use during a particularly sweaty workout. That being said, if you're not drenched, they are quite nice for a light workout, and since they are disposable, you can just throw them out after. They are also not adjustable, though we found that tying a small knot in the ear loops took care of this issue. These traditional blue medical masks do not come in fun colors or patterns, making them less aesthetically versatile than most of the washable/reusable masks. That said, this reasonably priced pack of 25 is a great option for people or businesses who need a larger quantity of quality disposable masks.
The WeddingStar Cloth Mask is a well-constructed, comfortable fashion mask that can be worn to the gym, work, or even to a wedding, hence the name. The ear straps and nose bridge wire are easily adjustable and do not deteriorate with washing. The flower design is simple yet adds a little pizzazz to what otherwise might be considered a boring mask. Due to the simplicity of the design, this mask looks great with most outfits. It can be dressed up or down depending on the event, and there are many colors and patterns available. The nose bridge wire also positively affects the mask's comfort, fit, and versatility. The Weddingstar is a great face mask option for those who wear glasses, as the fit encourages air to escape the bottom of the mask rather than the top.
This face mask is nicely fitted and seals to the face as it should, but the fabric seems to expand and contract with each breath — when inhaling, the fabric may touch your lips or nose. This didn't bother our testers as the fabric is quite breathable, but it is worth noting for those who might be less inclined to purchase a mask that does not remain completely off the face. Bottom line, the WeddingStar is a great choice for anyone looking to make a subtle statement with their mask without sacrificing comfort.
The 100% cotton Perry Ellis face mask is a pleated 3-pack with adjustable ear straps and a bendable nose bridge wire. This pack is comfortable for most and comes in both flashy and tame prints. The adjustable elastic ear straps and bendable nose bridge wire make this set a versatile one as the fit range is wide. The pleating also provides a little extra fabric, making these ideal for large and medium-sized faces. And, if you're looking for a little added protection, there's a pocket on the inside for disposable filters.
While this set will fit a wide range of differently sized and shaped faces, we did find that the extra fabric between the pleats makes the fit too big for smaller folks. This extra fabric also causes the mask to slide up a bit, but all you have to do to mitigate this is tighten the wire on your nose. The small plastic pieces for ear strap adjustments may come off in the wash, so be sure to tie a small knot to help them stay put and remain adjustable. This face mask set is a great option for those looking for a medium to large fit with adjustable ear straps and nose bridge wire to wear casually around town.
The Medi+Sons Supply set is an adorable reusable cotton set of 3. The fun pattern options are sure to turn heads, and the pleated face is quite comfortable. These machine-washable masks will last you through many washes as long as you lay them flat to dry. If scrunched in a pocket or throw in the dryer, the pleats unfold, and the mask loses shape. If you wear glasses and strategically place the bridge over the nose fabric, the glasses help fasten the face mask down, holding it in place and mitigating glasses fog. Each mask also has an easily accessible pocket for disposable filters if you'd like to add additional protection.
As fashionable as these masks are, the eye-catching patterns may make them less versatile for some. If you like to wear all black with a pop of color, these could be a great choice, but they may clash with some outfits. And while they are very comfortable, they are in no way adjustable. Unlike many of the other masks in our test suite, this set does not have adjustable ear straps or a nose bridge wire. Due to the lack of a nose wire, these masks tend to slip up the face into the field of vision. If you are a glasses wearer, it is important that you either pull the fabric as far down your nose as possible while still covering it or pull it high up on your nose and hold it down with the bridge of your glasses. If the mask hovers anywhere in between, you will surely experience glasses-fog. The Medi+Sons set is for the fashion over function types who want to look cute and don't mind adjusting their mask here and there.
Non-Award Winner Error: gearID #916501
[award=6, 916501]Best Disposable Mask[/award]
Number of Masks: 10 | Main Material: Not stated
The Covaflu KN95, is a durable and comfortable disposable mask that comes in a set of 10. Unlike many of the standard blue medical masks, this one can withstand multiple wears and small amounts of moisture. The mask is stiff and well-formed, keeping it away from your face to improve comfort and breathability. It folds flat in half and can be stored away in a pocket, bag, or purse easily without worrying about damaging it. This mask is also great for working out, but since it is disposable and non-washable, it will only last a few not-so-sweaty workouts before it begins to lose stiffness and appear dirty.
Unlike the 25 to 50 packs of traditional disposable blue medical masks, this mask set is a little more expensive when you take into account price per mask. That being said, the durability will make the pack last longer if you are willing to wear them more than once. These masks only come in one color, and while the fit is stellar, they look a little funky. The nose protrudes out quite far, and they say 'COVAFLU' on one side, which may clash with your fancy black dress or fitted suit in a more formal setting. This face mask set is a great choice for those looking for a sturdy yet comfortable disposable mask to wear to the grocery store or around town, or for those who are more into function than fashion.
The Mask by Design is a comfortable and soft reusable face mask. The cotton, polyester, and spandex blend is very gentle on sensitive skin, and the adjustable nose bridge wire and the elastic ear straps make this mask great for most sized and shaped faces. Whether you are looking to make a statement with your mask or remain under the radar, the wide variety of colors and patterns from pink tie-dye to simple black make this a great option for anyone. Not only is it soft, adjustable, and stylish, but it also has a pocket to place a disposable filter in for added protection.
While this mask fits comfortably on the face and comes in a plethora of different designs and colors, it protrudes a little too far off the nose and mouth, making it look a little odd. It also seems to suck itself into the face when the wearer inhales. This didn't bother our testers much, but if you are looking for something with a little more structure, this floppy mask may not be the right pick for you. However, for those with sensitive skin looking for a mask with a variety of style options, this could be the one for you.
The ANGPO Dust Mask is a single mask that comes with four disposable filters. It has two air valves, one placed on either cheek, to allow for unrestricted breathing, and we must say it works very well in that department. The reusable filters are easy to replace, and the mask itself lasted just fine through the wash, although you shouldn't have to wash it much since the replaceable filters are the only part that actually makes contact with your face. The heavy-duty nose bridge wire is both durable and adjustable. Virtually no air travels up the mask and out near the eyes resulting in little to no glasses fog.
While this mask does not create glasses fog, the thick nose bridge wire makes it a little difficult to wear glasses with if you sport larger frames. However, this can be mitigated by dropping the mask a little lower on the bridge of your nose. Unfortunately, the fit and comfort level of this mask aren't great. The neck strap inhibits movement of the head, and the ear design is not adjustable. The ear holes ride a little low and tend to pull the tops of the ears down. The mask is also far from fashionable unless you are going for the post-apocalyptic look. Overall this mask isn't our favorite but will work just fine for those looking for zero glasses fog and something to house disposable filters.
The Jumbl Blue Disposable face mask is a 50-pack of traditional style masks. What they lack in quality they make up for in quantity. We tested the pack of fifty, but this particular brand has packs of up to 2000. They are easy to put on and comfortable to wear. The three layers offer added protection, and the nose bridge wire allows for fit adjustments. The pleated front helps the mask fit a wider spectrum of faces, and the traditional style allows for these masks to be relatively versatile.
It's a good thing that this pack comes with 50 masks as they break quite easily. We understand that they are disposable; however, we would like to have confidence that each mask will last a full day. Unfortunately, it is worth bringing a backup with this mask in case the one you are wearing snaps while in use. We also noticed that some of the ear straps are of different lengths. This causes the mask to slip further to one side, affecting the overall fit. We mitigated this by tying a small knot on the larger ear hole, but we would rather not have to deal with that. We also noticed that there is a little excess fabric even for larger faces. Overall this mask set is best used by someone looking for quantity over quality.
The Feeke Protection Bandana is an adjustable mask with a visible mouth window. This somewhat comfortable mask comes in a set of 2 and has one very specific use: it is meant for the deaf and hard of hearing. The cotton bandana-like material around the peekaboo mouth window is breathable, and the adjustable ear straps make this mask fit over most faces. It is hand washable, but don't put it in the washer as this will compromise the plastic mouth window.
This mask aims to allow others to have full visibility of the wearer's mouth; however, the window fogs up quite quickly. That being said, when used in tandem with a little anti-fog spray or droplets before each use, the window remains mostly fogless. However, the mask is also relatively uncomfortable. There is a lot of fabric, and it is difficult to get the fit right, even with the presence of adjustable ear straps. The lack of a nose bridge wire also affects the fit negatively. Even though this mask is ill-fitting and a little loose, it is a viable option for those that work with the deaf and hard of hearing.
The SuppyAID KN95 is a 5-pack of disposable masks. Even though they are disposable, the thick material holds its shape and remains intact through multiple wears. These masks fold flat for easy storage between uses and come equipped with an adjustable nose bridge wire to improve comfort and fit.
Even with the adjustable nose wire, the SuppyAID suffers in the fit and comfort department. The mask itself is very small, and the ear straps are not adjustable. It holds tight to the cheeks, which creates an effective seal, but most of our testers could barely speak without pulling the mask off their faces. This mask might work for children or for adults who find that most masks are too large for their faces. However, keep in mind that this is NOT an N95 mask, despite the name that suggests otherwise.
Why You Should Trust Us
The person in charge of this review is Hayley Thomas from Denver, Colorado. She is active in her travels and enjoys everything from the busy city to the quiet outdoors. From climbing to coffee shops, Hayley is adamant about staying healthy and out of harm's way.
Nothing is more important than keeping ourselves and our loved ones safe, but you don't have to sacrifice comfort and style to do so! Our review process goes far beyond just testing these items. In the weeks before ordering our face mask test suite, we took our time doing plenty of research. We dove deeply into verified customer experiences and spent many hours researching what people, like you, look for in a good mask. Once we decide on what to buy, we determine our testing criteria and compare everything side-by-side. We wore each mask to the grocery store, the gym, inside, outside, and more. We washed the washable options and re-wore the disposable ones. We were sure to test the masks out on different sized and shaped faces for comfort, breathability, fit, versatility, and durability.
Analysis and Test Results
To ensure that our comparisons are accurate, we chose five different metrics to emphasize during our testing phase. Read on to learn about our findings for each metric.
Wearing a mask doesn't have to be uncomfortable — nor should it. We found that stiff nose bridge wires, tight ear loops, and itchy material are the top causes of discomfort. To ensure a comfortable experience, we tested each mask on multiple people. We paid attention to every minute detail, both while walking casually to the store and while getting our heart rate up for a workout - among other things.
The BeatBasic and WeddingStar face masks are our top comfort contenders. The BeatBasic sports a comfortable nose bridge wire and easy to use ear straps. The Weddingstar has a soft fabric with adjustable ear straps.
When wearing a mask, it can be hard not to become overly aware of your breathing. Too much hot air in the mask can be panic-inducing or just straight up annoying, so we scored masks higher in this metric when they could move air effectively and efficiently.
Cotton is known for its breathability, and cotton masks are no exception in this department. The BeatBasic face mask is a top contender in this arena. Between its shape and the adjustable nose bridge wire, the air flows down the mask, keeping it from overheating. The Medi+Sons and Perry Ellis masks are also pleated, which allows for a little space between the mouth and the mask, letting breath flow more easily than form-fitted masks.
An ill-fitting mask affects not only comfort but also protection. If the mask is too large and falls off the wearer's nose, then the fit compromises its ability to provide protection. And if it's too small, the discomfort may lead you to remove it prematurely. Both of these things defeat the purpose of wearing the mask in the first place.
Some masks in our test suite sit a little far off the face, while others are too tight. We found that the best fitting masks have a combination of an adjustable nose bridge wire and ear straps. Our top performer in this category is the Weddingstar, with the Perry Ellis coming in a close second.
Some of us enjoy a good outfit change, but others want one option that works in multiple scenarios. Whichever way you feel, no one wants to be carrying around one mask for work, another for the gym, and then a different one for cocktails in the evening.
We have three winners in this department. Black is easy to match no matter what you're up to, and the BeatBasic is comfortable enough to wear on a jog or while in the office. Dress it up with some fancy threads or dress it down with shorts and a T-shirt. The WeddingStar is similarly black but with a floral flair — and many other options are available. The pleated Perry Ellis is a comfortable set of three differently patterned masks that offer a little added variety.
Durability is always an important factor. Not only do we want our reusable masks to last more than one wash, but we want our disposable ones to last through an entire day of work, evening out, or gym session. We paid special attention to popped stitches, the ear straps' elasticity, and the fabric quality pre- and post-wash.
We were happy with most of our reusable face masks' durability, but a few that stood out. The BeatBasic, WeddingStar, Medi+Sons Supply, Mask by Design, and ANGPO Dust Mask are the top contenders. As for disposables options, the COVAFLU and EasyEast seem to last the longest.
Whether you're planning a quick trip to the grocery store or you're attending a wedding, it's important in these times to have the right mask for the job. They don't have to be uncomfortable, unfashionable, or difficult to breathe in. Without trying masks on, it can be a little difficult to tell what's what, which is why we had our experts test them out for you. After ample research, weeks of wear, and multiple washes, we landed on the top contenders in this review and hope that all our hard work helps you choose the perfect mask.
— Hayley Thomas