One way to improve fit is to “knot and tuck.” Knot the earloops close to the mask’s edge, then tuck the extra material to close any gaps. Here is a video demonstrating the procedure:
2. Double up if you’re wearing a single layer mask. The CDC recommends wearing a disposable mask beneath a cloth mask.
“The second mask should push the edges of the inner mask against your face,” the CDC wrote.
After experimenting with varying techniques for mask effectiveness, the agency concluded that wearing a cloth mask over a surgical mask — along with using a mask filter or wearing a nylon covering over a mask — are effective options to improve mask’s fit and decrease exposure to aerosols that could cause infection, the AJC’s Kiersten Willis wrote.
1. Don’t double up disposable masks. If you’re going to double up, only one should be disposable. These masks do not fit snugly enough to be effective, even if you’re wearing two, the CDC states.
2. Don’t wear any masks with exhalation valves or vents, even if doubling up. These allow droplets in and out, which makes the mask ineffective.
3. Don’t double up if you’re wearing a KN95 mask, the CDC writes. This type of mask is designed to filter 95% of particles and fit snugly to your face, so there is no need to wear two masks.