Finally! peer-reviewed research from the American Chemical Association giving an in-depth overview of the effectiveness of DIY mask materials. The most important takeaways are –
- Masks need to be sealed to be effective. Surgical style masks and bandannas provide ample airflow through the sides and lose the vast majority of their filtration power simply to the air flowing in the sides.
- Materials matter. Silk and chiffon were the best at filtering fine particles, but a multi-material mask with alternating layers worked the best.
- Correctly assembled and fitted, cloth masks can repel >80% of even the smallest aerosol particles.