How to Store and Re-Use Masks and Cloth Face Coverings

Removing Surgical Masks

How to remove facemask with intent to reuse:

1.  Wash hands thoroughly (for 20 seconds) or use hand sanitizer

2.  When removing mask:

      • Remove mask by holding the ear loops. Remove slowly and carefully.
      • For masks with ties: untie lower ties FIRST. Untie upper ties LAST.  Do not let loops or ties touch your face.

3.  After removing facemask:

      • Look for contamination, distortion in shape/form. If the mask is dirty, torn, wet, or no longer adequately covers your nose and mouth, the mask should be thrown away.

4.  If the facemask is NOT visibly soiled, torn, or wet:

      • Carefully fold the outer surface against itself so that it is on the inside.
      • Store the folded mask in a clean, sealable paper bag or breathable container.

5.  Wash hands thoroughly or use hand sanitizer

 

Removing Cloth Face Coverings

Homemade cloth face coverings should be made using multiple layers of tightly woven but breathable fabric such as flannel, denim, batik or shop cloth. 

How to remove reusable cloth face covering:

1.  Wash hands thoroughly (for 20 seconds) or use hand sanitizer.

2.  When removing face covering:

      • Remove face covering by holding the ear loops. Remove slowly and carefully.
      • For face coverings with ties: untie lower ties FIRST. Untie upper ties LAST.  Do not let loops or ties touch your face.

3.  After removing face covering:

      • Look for contamination or distortion in shape/form. If the face covering is torn, damaged, or no longer adequately covers your nose and mouth, the face covering should be thrown away. If it is dirty, contaminated or wet, wash it immediately.

4.  Wash face coverings FREQUENTLY. The CDC recommends washing after each use if possible.  Use hot water, detergent and hot dryer cycle.

5.  To store cloth face covering:

      • Carefully fold the outer surface against itself so that it is on the inside.
      • Store the folded face covering in a clean, sealable paper bag or breathable container.

6.  Wash hands thoroughly or use hand sanitizer.

 

Putting both Surgical and Cloth Face Coverings back on:

1.  Wash hands thoroughly (for 20 seconds) or use hand sanitizer.

2.  Hold the mask/face covering by pinching the ear loops or upper ties.

3.  Place over face, making sure to put the mask/face covering on with the same inner and outer sides as before.

4.  Secure ear loops behind the ears. If the mask/face covering has ties: secure the upper ties FIRST, then secure the lower ties LAST.

5.  The mask/face covering should fit snugly across the bridge of your nose so that your nose is covered. The mask/face covering does not need to completely wrap underneath your chin, however doing so helps to create a good seal around your nose and mouth.

6.  Wash hands thoroughly or use hand sanitizer.