Now that masks are mandatory in the Melbourne metro area and the Mitchell Shire (well, nearly) and the rest of the country is becoming more aware at how quickly another spike in coronavirus cases can happen, heaps of Aussies are looking at investing in a face mask or two (or three?) to wear on a daily basis. Over a million people bought masks from chemists over the weekend, which means that many places are deeply sold out, so here are some nifty ways to make your own reusable face mask.
No matter if you’re a whizz on the sewing machine (I’m gonna dig mine out this week) or you simply do not trust yourself with a needle and thread, there are ways to DIY a face mask using things from around your own home.
How To Make A Reusable Face Mask At Home
Go Sew Yourself
Plenty of places have posted up free sewing guides and patterns for making your own face mask at home, including the legends over at Spotlight. They dropped a free pattern and tips on making those pleated masks, which I’m sure even a complete sewing machine virgin could whip up in a good crafternoon session.
As for what you should be making them out of, the Victorian Department of Health & Human Services says that a three-layer approach will properly protect you. It recommends you use water-resistant material for the outer layer (like a green shopping bag or old workout gear) a middle layer of fabric blends like cotton and polyester (like an old t-shirt or a reusable bag) and an inner layer made from water-absorbing fabric like cotton (another old cotton t-shirt.)
The DHHS has also got a little guide on the best way to create a mask, which is not as fitted as others but will still do the trick.
A little tip if you’re making a mask, feed a bit of malleable wire through the top that sits across your nose, so you can mould the top of the mask to your face and over the bridge of your nose.
Grab The Scissors
If you don’t trust yourself with a sewing machine, or you need something to tide you over while you get your hands on a better one, you can also DIY a makeshift mask out of an old sock.
Literally, you don’t even need to do some bodgy hand-sewing on this one, it’s as simple as making a few smart cuts into a cotton sock and you’ve got yourself a mask that’s good enough to stop you from copping a fine in Melbourne.
Belgium dancer and choreographer Safia Aggoune has gone super viral this week, with a TikTok showing how you can make a sock mask. These are good for a temporary fix, but extra layers are necessary to fully protect yourself and others. Maybe you could wear multiple sock masks for added protection?
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Wrap It Up With A Bandana
Another very simple mask you can make without getting out any sharp objects uses a couple of things you probably have around the house. A bandana, hair elastics, and a coffee filter or some paper towel.
There are heaps of tutorials out there on how to makeshift a mask with a bandana, but this one shows you three (3) different ways to DIY a face mask. You’ll need a stapler and a hot glue gun for one of them, if you can trust yourself with those.Image: Getty Images / Gotham / Instagram / @nwtdepop