Several types of masks are used predominantly to protect yourself from airborne droplets that might contain the dreaded coronavirus. These masks are "3 Ply Face Masks," "Surgical Masks," and "N95 Masks." These masks have different features but offer the same thing - protection against the virus. 


Surgical Masks


Surgical masks cover the nose and the mouth. They provide a barrier between fluids and particles in the air that can come in contact with your nose and mouth. Surgical masks provide at least 80% of bacteria filtration efficiency. These are masks inherently created with three-ply or three layers of polypropylene.


3 Ply Face Masks


Three-ply face masks consist of one, two, or three layers of flat or pleated fabric usually made of paper, cotton, or polypropylene.


N95 Masks


An N95 mask is one of the best protective covers against particles in the air (viruses, aerial pathogens). According to studies, N95 masks are considered two times more effective compared to surgical masks. 


Generally, N95 Masks are allocated for medical workers who are working in high-risk environments like hospitals. However, civilians can still use N95 masks for whatever purpose they deem necessary.  


Why are 3 Ply Face Masks and Surgical Masks considered good alternatives for N95 Masks?


N95 masks are undeniably one of the best masks the world currently has to offer, but they can be quite rare in terms of supply these days compared to 3 ply face masks and surgical masks. That's not always the case, though. Some stores sell N95 masks. For example, here at CBD Armour, we offer N95 respirators at the ease of online transaction. 


If you're on a budget and would rather choose the trusty old three-ply face masks and surgical masks, they can still work too, and here are the meaningful reasons why. 

Surgical Masks


  • Surgical masks are regulated by the FDA (Food and Drug Administration); they can't get tampered in terms of quality unless you purchase from a shady buyer with no business permit.
  • Surgical masks are medical masks typically used by medical workers when they operate or every time they're confined in high-risk spaces where pathogens linger. Because it's medically used, the protective and filtration barrier of surgical masks is quite effective.


3 Ply Face Masks


  • Three-ply face masks are a regular protective barrier made up of regular fabric pieces like cotton. Because pieces of cotton may not meet fluid barrier or filtration efficiency levels, three layers or plies of fabric are needed to add filtration efficiency.
  • Three-ply face masks are relatively cheap and can be fashioned from the hems of your skirt. 
  • Three-ply face masks are reusable compared to N95 respirators. They are washed and dried every after use.


Final thought


All these masks offer the same thing, protect your respiratory system from contracting unwanted pathogens. All masks are not the same, though, they don't offer the same filtration level or protection. 


For the record, N95 respirators currently offer the highest level of protection against airborne pathogens. They can be quite rare these days, but here at CBD Armour, we have enough supply to cater to our customer's demands.