As the pandemic rages on, people have begun trying out mask alternatives from bandannas and neck gaiters to knitted and silk face coverings — but the N95 mask remains the gold standard.
A Duke University study published this month tested the effectiveness of 14 different mask types and found further proof that the N95 is the most effective for stopping transmission of respiratory droplets during regular speech.
While personal protective equipment shortages persist, often leaving those most vulnerable to contracting the virus — including health care workers — unable to procure enough N95 masks, PPE is available for individual purchase at some online retailers.
KN95 and N95 masks are extremely similar.
“The difference between an N95 and a KN95 mask is where the mask is certified,” the Oklahoma Department of Health wrote on its website. KN95s are certified in China while N95s are certified in the US.
Here are the online retailers selling N95 and KN95 masks, as well as extra mask filters.
In addition to servicing first responders with wholesale options, N95 Mask Co. sells a variety of its first-tier protective masks to the public. The Respokare NIOSH N95 Respirator Masks boasts “advanced antiviral technology” and retails for $49.99 for a four-pack or $89.99 for a 10-pack.
The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, part of the CDC, has approved this N95 Respirator face mask, which is the second of Mask Co.’s two N95 options, and sells for $179 for a 20-pack or $349 for a 40-pack.
The best-selling KN95 on Amazon
On Amazon, mask-seller SuppyAID has the title of best-selling KN95. Its masks offer some of the best possible protection against coronavirus particles and are additionally dust-, pollen- and haze-proof. A five-pack costs $18.
N95 respirator filters should be replaced regularly. The brand 3M sells a 10-pack of disposable filters for $20.70.