To best protect yourself and others, it’s important to wear a well-fitting mask. Data shows that a well-fitting mask does a much better job preventing the spread of COVID-19, and is now required under Vail Resorts’ policies for team members who have been in close contact with someone who has COVID-19 or returning to work after isolation. So what does “well-fitting” mean?
Your face covering should:
Fit snugly against your face. Gaps can let respiratory droplets leak in and out around the edges of your mask.
Have multiple layers. A mask with layers stops more respiratory droplets from getting inside your mask, or escaping from your mask if you are sick.
With COVID-19 spreading in our communities, now’s a good time to upgrade your mask and make sure you’re sticking to the following Dos and Don'ts:
- Choose a mask with a nose wire or metal strip along the top of the mask. The nose wire prevents air from leaking out of the top of the mask. Bend the nose wire over your nose to fit close to your face.
- Use a mask fitter over a disposable or a cloth mask to prevent air from leaking around the edges of the mask. A mask fitter, also called a mask brace, is a soft, flexible and adjustable “frame” that significantly improves the outer seal of a mask.
- Check that your mask fits snugly over your nose, mouth and chin. Check for gaps by cupping your hands around the outside edges of the mask. Make sure no air is flowing from the area near your eyes or from the sides of the mask. If the mask has a good fit, you will feel warm air come through the front of the mask and may be able to see the mask material move in and out with each breath.
- Add two layers of material. You can use a cloth mask that has multiple layers of fabric, or even wear a disposable mask underneath a cloth mask. The cloth mask should push the edges of the disposable mask against your face.
- Neck gaiters or “buffs” are acceptable as a second layer OR as the only mask as long as they are folded to provide two layers of protection and secured using a mask fitter or brace.
- If you have a beard, make sure your mask still fits snugly by trimming your beard close to your face, use a mask fitter/brace, or wearing a disposable mask underneath a cloth mask that has multiple layers of fabric
- Consider voluntary use of N95 or KN95 respirator
- Wear a mask made of fabric that makes it hard to breathe (e.g. vinyl).
- Wear a mask with exhalation valves, vents or holes.
- Wear a mask made of mesh, lace or see-through fabric, which allow virus particles to escape.
- Wear a bandana, scarf, ski mask, or balaclava as your only face covering. You may wear these on top of an approved face covering.
- Wear multiple disposable masks on top of each other.