How to DIY Face Masks and Other Homemade Personal Protective Equipment

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Face masks are one of the most important items nowadays. Medical and healthcare professionals use face masks to protect themselves while they work and to avoid catching airborne diseases. Those who are exhibiting symptoms such as coughs and sneezing also need face masks to avoid further transmission of the novel coronavirus, which results in the COVID-19 disease. 

Unfortunately, there has been a scarcity of face masks in the healthcare sector. In regions in and out of Luzon where an enhanced community quarantine has been set in place, face masks are also required when going out for essential activities. What will you do if you can’t buy face masks anymore, but you need to go out and buy food for the family

Don’t fret. There are DIY tutorials on making homemade face masks, which you can also donate to healthcare workers if you want to. Here are some helpful tips for you. 

Use Free Patterns

Don’t know how to create your own pattern? No worries! The internet has a lot of free templates for face masks that you can download and use. Sewcanshe.com shows you five different face mask patterns depending on your needs and style.

If you are looking for face mask templates that will fit children’s faces, this Instructables tutorial is perfect for you. This tutorial is complete with the materials needed, instructions on how to use the templates correctly, and how to wash them after use. There are also available videos online that will show you step-by-step tutorials in case you want to make sure you are doing it right. 

Perhaps the best part about these homemade DIY masks is that they use materials that are really affordable or may already be available at home that you can just upcycle. 

Gather Materials You Can Find at Home

While most DIY face mask projects involve really inexpensive materials, the lockdown may not make it possible to go outside and buy them at all. 

The good news is most of these DIY face mask tutorials allow you to use whatever scrap materials you have at home, making these projects zero-cost.

You can use fabrics from t-shirts or bedding that you don’t use anymore to create cute, stylish, and useful face masks for you and your family. You can also use some elastic band that you have in your sewing kit, ribbons, and even shoelaces to tie your face mask onto your face.

Keep in mind to use materials that won’t cause any irritation or will aggravate any symptoms of colds or cough, or asthma. While these masks are meant to be cost-efficient and back-ups if no surgical face mask is available, it’s still important to use items that are clean and microbe-free.

Try No-Sew Options

There are also no-sew tutorials for those who don’t have a sewing machine or a sewing kit available, as well as for those who aren’t that familiar with how to use a needle and thread.

The video tutorial below shows five easy ways to DIY face masks without the use of any kind of sewing. Plus, most of the materials used in this tutorial can already be found at home.

If you are on the more high-tech side and you have a 3D-printer, use the device to create your own face mask. This video tutorial by CNN can show you how to craft your face mask and face shields step-by-step.

Alternatives for Other Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

DIY Raincoat

Raincoats now have an alternative function other than protecting you from rain. It may also be used to protect yourself from viruses while you’re outside. Because the need for protective equipment has increased due to the ongoing virus scare, even some of our front liners are asking for alternatives to disposable gowns, such as raincoats, as donations to add to their personal protective equipment stock. 

This tutorial from PrettyPrudent.com shows you all the materials and a step-by-step video on how to sew a cute raincoat for you, your kids, or the frontliners in your local government who need all the support they can get. You can use old plastic protective covers or an old shower curtain to make this raincoat.

If you are looking to upcycle your stash of plastic bags, follow this tutorial on how to convert your excess shopping plastic bags at home into raincoats. Not only is this tutorial practically zero-cost, but you are also reducing plastic waste that deteriorates our environment.

With these practical and almost zero-cost tutorials, many will be able to make their own PPEs at home and protect themselves from the COVID-19 pandemic. Still, remember that if you don’t need to go outside, it’s better to stay indoors and keep safe

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