Coronavirus - Advice & Face Mask Research
There has been much discussion about whether the general public should wear masks and more so what kind. Various countries have taken different approaches on these matters. Fashionizer has been collecting a variety of articles on the subject that have led us to the conclusion that fabric face masks do offer some value, and washable masks like the ones we offer are a comfortable, cost effective and sustainable solution in non-medical settings.
COVID-19 is a novel disease, and we are constantly learning new things about it every day. However, much of the confusion comes from not understanding that face masks have two very different functions.
Masks can be worn to protect the wearer from getting infected, or masks can be worn to protect others from being infected by the wearer.
To protect the wearer, medical grade PPE masks are required. However, due to the rising global pandemic, there is a shortage of their supply, which is why some governments are reluctant to advocate the use of masks for the general population, as the danger of infection is much higher in medical environments.
However, masks that protect the wearer from transmitting the virus to others, like social distancing, is an important measure for keeping the virus spread at bay, and blocking the transmission can be accomplished with a cloth mask. As evidence suggests that COVID-19 can be transmitted before symptom onset, community transmission might be reduced if everyone, including people who have been infected but are asymptomatic and contagious, wear face masks. The other benefit of wearing cloth masks is that they offer some form of protection from touching your face with “dirty hands”, and help build an awareness to not touch one’s face.
Our fabric face masks are made of high-quality fabric, and are guaranteed for a minimum of 30 washes. They consist of three layers of fabric, one being a non-woven layer of interlining for filtration. Fabric is either 100% cotton, or Fashionizer organic CPF, (Cotton Performance Fabric). The masks have a lightweight metal wire at the top of the mask, making it easy to fit around and shape the nose, with lightweight elastic ensures minimal pressure around the ears (you can expect 5% shrinkage after the first wash).
It is important to follow strict hygiene procedures when wearing all face masks. You should always wash your hands before putting on your mask, as well as before taking it off. Once it is taken off, do not put it on again without washing it. Please also make sure that it does not come in contact with any surfaces before it is washed. Masks should be washed with soap and agitation at 60°C.
Watch our video: Step by step process of how to take care of your face mask
WHEN IT COMES TO LAUNDERING MASKS AND UNIFORMS
- The protein shell of the CoronaVirus is protected by a lipid membrane and this membrane is dissolved by soap and hot water. In the same way as the hand washing instructions washing your clothes need to involve, sop, temperature and agitation.
- Avoid cross contamination, by keeping all “dirty” clothes in a bag separate to clean ones.
- Avoid touching “dirty Laundry” without gloves and masks and ensure it does not touch and cross contaminate your clothes.
- Staff uniforms should not be worn on the way to or from work especially on public transport.
- Towels pose a high risk of cross contamination due to the fibres holding bacteria and viruses in the pile. They need to be thermally disinfected.
Machine Cycle Management: 3 minutes at a temperature of 71 degrees or 10 minutes at 65 degrees will provide thermal disinfection, however, for those operators who are conscious of laundry energy savings, we would recommend a detergent called Sparenity, which combines low temperature bug kill and odour elimination with excellent cleaning performance. Halo destroys H1N1 flu virus, which is an enveloped virus like Covid-19, in 5 minutes contact time at 30°C.
Sere below further research from across the world on the subject: