How to Make a Stylish & Protective Face Mask
The CDC (Centers for Disease Control) is now recommending that everyone wear a face mask in public to help control the spread of the coronavirus. Our first face mask DIY (#300465XHT) used two layers of Spun Bonded Polypropylene Non-Woven Material for Masks as the mask shell, with a layer of filter material in the pocket. This new design uses Sunbrella® Spectrum for the mask's outer layer, providing a fun and colorful fabric to make a more stylish and customizable mask. We've also added some other tweaks to our mask design, including a metal nose stay at the bridge of the nose and elastic straps to keep the mask in place. This mask DIY is quick to make and will keep you protected when you go out in public.
Our mask design has a contoured shape so it fits closely to your face and eliminates gaps. We have three downloadable templates — Small, Medium and Large — so you can find the size that fits your face. If you want to create a mask that is specifically sized to your face measurements, check out our Fabric Calculator (www.fabric-calculator.com). You can use it to input your face measurements and the calculator will create a custom mask size to fit you perfectly.
Here are the three template downloads that you can print out and use to mark your fabrics:
We chose Sunbrella Spectrum for our outer mask layer in the color Dove (#48032-0000). Sunbrella has stated that their Cast, Spectrum and Canvas upholstery fabrics can be used for mask material due to the weight and weave of these fabrics. We offer dozens of colors of these fabrics so you can choose whichever color suits you.
Our mask design has two key features that are different from our first mask design: a metal nose stay and elastic straps. The brass nose stay is thin and flat. It fits in between the outer and inner layer and is sewn in place. The metal shapes to your nose to create a tight-fitting mask. Best of all, the mask can be washed with the nose piece in it without causing an issue. We used 1/4-inch elastic for our ear straps. Please note that we are going through a lot of elastic and it might not be in stock. We are trying to keep elastic in stock but it is in very high demand right now. You can also use grosgrain ribbon as ties — as we did for our first mask design — if elastic is unavailable.
The bottom of the mask is left open so that there's a pocket opening for a filter layer inside the mask. Our Melt Blown Face Mask Filter Material blocks 95% of airborne particles. We highly recommend it as the filter layer in DIY face masks. The mask itself is washable, but the filter layer should be discarded after every public outing and a new layer inserted before your next outing. We also highly recommend that you wash your mask after every public use. Read our blog "How to Wash a DIY Protective Face Mask" (#300467XHT) to learn how to properly wash and sanitize your face mask.