How to Properly Wear a Face Mask

Thanks to COVID-19, face masks are required pretty much everywhere you go but how do you know you're wearing it right? Check out these tips on how to properly wear a face mask.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has advised individuals to cover their mouth and nose in public to help stop the spread of COVID-19. On July 10, 2020, citing an increase in COVID-19 cases, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer released an executive order that requires residents to wear face masks in all indoor public spaces and in some outdoor public spaces when people can’t maintain six feet apart.

Businesses are to refuse service to anyone not wearing a face mask and anyone that won’t wear a face mask is subject to a $500 fine. The only exceptions are kids under 5 and those with medical conditions.

When wearing a face mask, it’s important to wear it properly to make sure you are protecting yourself and others in your community. Here are the CDC guidelines on how to properly wear a face mask.

How should I wear a face mask?

When wearing a face mask, make sure you’re following these recommendations from the CDC:

  • Cover your mouth and nose with the mask.
  • Make sure the mask is snug, check for gaps on the sides.
  • Keep the mask on while out of your house.
  • Avoid touching the front of the mask without gloves.
  • When removing the mask, make sure it doesn’t touch your eyes, nose or mouth.
  • Wash your hands after you remove your mask.

Should I wash my face mask?

Yes, be sure to wash a cloth mask or dispose of a disposable mask after every use. You don’t have to follow a sanitizing procedure — a washing machine should be enough to properly clean your face covering.

Where can I find a face mask?

According to the CDC, cloth face coverings are recommended. Surgical masks and N-95 respirators should continue to be saved for health care workers and other medical first responders.

Many businesses are selling these essentials while giving back. If you want to support small and local, there are Detroit-area designers selling face masks. You can also look into bigger corporations such as Disney and Old Navy or check out our roundup of places to find a face mask for more.

How can I make my own face mask?

Try these directions from the CDC for making sew or no-sew masks. Or, use this tutorial from the Stitching Scientist for kid-sized masks or this one from Cricut for a no-sew version.

How do I explain wearing a face mask to my child?

Though face masks aren’t required for kids under the age of 2, they can still be intimidating to young kids. If you need information on face masks and kids, check out our post here.

This post was originally published in May 2020 and is updated regularly.

Metro Parent Editorial Team
Metro Parent Editorial Team
Since 1986, the Metro Parent editorial team is trained to be the go-to source for metro Detroit families, offering a rich blend of expert advice, compelling stories, and the top local activities for kids. Renowned for their award-winning content, the team of editors and writers are dedicated to enriching family life by connecting parents with the finest resources and experiences our community has to offer.


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