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Masks – Re-use or Toss? The Pros and Cons of Each

We get it. Choosing the appropriate face mask for yourself or employees can be a challenge.

Of course, you want protection….

Style is a definite plus….  

Comfort is key too, especially if you have to wear a mask all day at school or work. 

For most people, the choice comes down to reusable cloth masks or disposable face masks, such as surgical masks. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) recommends simple cloth face coverings for members of the public, and they suggest washing them every day in the laundry. Simple is good, right?

The pros:

  • You can make them yourself
  • You can better express your personality and coordinate masks with outfits
  • You can make a statement about causes, politics, or brands

But then there are the cons:

  • You really don’t have time to sit down and sew masks
  • They don’t meet any recognized quality standards (you never know what you’re going to get)
  • You need to wash them every day or…yuck or worse…
  • You forget which one is in the laundry and which one is in the car
  • The clean one doesn’t match your outfit or isn’t appropriate for meeting with clients
  • They cost more than disposables—if you run a business, the cost adds up fast
  • The dog shredded it

Disposable surgical-style face masks are a better option. They are designed to help block large-particle droplets, splashes, sprays, or splatter from reaching your mouth and nose. As a disposable, they should be used only once and then discarded. Disposable masks:

  • Offer optimum hygiene
  • Cost less than cloth
  • Are lightweight

But finding quality disposable masks can be a challenge:

  • Most do not meet ASTM technical standards for fluid resistance, breathability, bacterial filtration, particulate filtration, or flammability
  • Counterfeits of legitimate brands abound 
  • Supplies are notoriously inconsistent

A Better Option

A better option for consistent, ASTM-rated disposable masks is part of creating and using Care Package service. Unlike Amazon.com, Walmart, and other online markets that source products opportunistically, we guarantee quality and our “set-it-and-forget-it” subscription service ensures availability. Our suppliers’ factories do not change. And with more than 40 years of experience in providing high-quality products, they monitor every aspect of the PPE process—from sourcing raw materials to final quality checks. As a result, most leading healthcare providers use the same products we send in your care package service, including Kaiser, California Pacific Medical Center, McKesson, and Cardinal Health.

We can help you decide quantities. For example, if employees require all-day use, the best practice is to allow for two or three masks per day, per person. You can always adjust quantities at any time. 

Prices range depending on ASTM rating and quantities. ASTM Level 1 standard masks for general-purpose use start at $22.99 for a package of 50. Subscription customers save an additional 15% on their orders. 

Subscribe Today! 

Never worry about having the right personal protective equipment on hand. We’ll make sure that you always have the supplies you need, when you need them, at an affordable cost.