Face masks are becoming more commonly used in public around the UK and, in some cases, are a requirement in shops and on public transport.
But, if you're regularly wearing a face mask or covering, it's vital to make sure that it is clean every time you wear it, otherwise you risk contamination.
Here, CEO of laundry service Laundryheap, Deyan Dimitrov, explains how to effectively wash your reusable face mask.
Wash your mask every time you use it
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If you buy or make your own cloth face mask, it’s wise to clean it regularly. Even though the face mask’s purpose is to protect others from yourself, your fabric face mask still needs washing. If you don’t wash it, you risk germs and bacteria harbouring on the face mask, which could cause you to become ill or cause blemishes on areas where your mask rests on your face.
The best way to wash it
The best way to wash your face mask is to pop it in the washing machine and add some fabric-safe disinfectant to the rinse compartment of your washing machine. You should do this every time you wear it, just to be safe. It’s fine to throw it in with other similar colours, so don’t worry about washing it on its own.
You can also hand wash it
If you don’t have the time for a machine wash in the evening, then you can easily hand wash your mask. Fill up a clean basin with hot water and some detergent and begin to scrub the mask. Have the water as hot as you can and be sure to scrub the mask well for five minutes. Then rinse the mask with cold water and leave to dry completely.
Store your mask properly when you’re not using it
If you take your mask off for whatever reason, make sure to store it properly until you get home to wash it. Leaving it loosely in a pocket or handbag could transfer germs to other items, and vice versa. Keep a small disposable bag inside your bag or pocket that you can keep the mask in until it’s time to wash it. If you take your mask off, don’t put it back on until after you’ve washed it.
Have more than two masks
Having two face masks means that you will always have one spare when the other’s in the wash, so it’s worth investing in a two pack. Many fashion retailers now sell non-surgical masks, so you can easily pick some up.