'''Updated on April 3, 2020:''' I revised the design to use two different colors of fabric for the inside and the outside. I also changed the method of attaching the elastic straps to the mask, which is now much easier and nicer looking too. Many of the photos have been updated to match these revisions.
'''Updated on , 2020:''' I of for the and . to the mask, and of .
As of today (March 31, 2020) there's a '''severe shortage of PPE''' (personal protective equipment) in the United States as we face the COVID-19 pandemic. Many people have been making masks at home in an effort to provide a minimum of protection to frontline healthcare workers, and some hospitals have begun accepting donations of these homemake masks.
I began making surgical-style masks at home, for which there are many online guides, but found them to be '''frustratingly uncomfortable''' and '''seemingly ineffective''', as they fail to form even a rudimentary seal around the wearer's nose and mouth. Instead, I decided to try and make a smaller, more comfortable, and potentially more effective homemade mask in the style of certain disposable half-face respirators.
[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Respirator|Wikipedia] says, "a respirator is a device designed to protect the wearer from inhaling hazardous atmospheres." By attempting to create a proper seal between the user's face and the edges of the mask, inhaled air is forced through the filter material and not through gaps between the mask and the user's face.
This design has gone through several iterations and seems to work well. It '''uses less material''' than a homemade surgical-style mask, is '''more comfortable''' to wear (in my opinion), is '''reasonably easy to sew''' (even for a beginner like me), and it offers '''arguably better protection''' by eliminating any large air gaps.
== Warning ==
Please note that '''this mask has NOT been rated or certified''' in any way whatsoever. Its effectiveness will depend entirely on the quality of construction, the particular materials used, and how it fits on the person wearing it. This mask should NOT be used by anyone with a beard. This mask may provide better protection than a bandana or a surgical-style mask, but '''it should NEVER be used EXCEPT when medical-grade equipment is UNAVAILABLE'''.
== Disclaimer ==
I am not a healthcare professional. This design has not undergone any laboratory or field testing. '''No warranty is implied or provided. Use at your own risk.''' Please use common sense, and please be safe out there.
== License ==
The [https://talldog.dozuki.com/Document/LyXxUabYyWZIY1P4|face mask pattern PDF] and this step-by-step guide are licensed [https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0/|CC BY-SA]. That means you can use or modify these materials for any reason you want, including commercial purposes, as long as you provide attribution, and that any derivative work is released under the same license.