Leaving the house now involves checking for phone, keys, wallet *and* your mask.
Wearing a reusable cloth mask when you’re out and about is important in the fight against COVID-19, especially as cases rise in parts of Canada. By now, we know that COVID-19 is spread through small liquid particles secreted when we cough, sneeze and even talk. By providing a physical barrier that stops droplets from landing on surfaces or being inhaled by others, masks help curb the spread of the disease.
There are a few things to be mindful of when using reusable cloth masks. First, they need to be washed. Narveen Jandu, an assistant professor at Waterloo University’s school of public health, says that masks should be washed after daily use. This can be done either by hand with soap and water, or they can be tossed into your washer and dryer (or hung to air dry) with the rest of your laundry.
When you’re out and about, make sure your mask stays clean and maintains its shape. Rolling your mask down to your chin, or cramming it into your pocket isn’t optimal since “it’s getting bunched up, it’s getting folded up and you’re potentially soiling it,” says Jandu. “Soiling it or compromising the integrity of the mask, and then putting it on, would not be ideal.” Use a Ziploc bag to avoid this, and replace the bag every few days. You can also use a small reusable bag, like a sunglasses bag or a jewelry pouch—just remember to wash it as often as you wash your masks.
At home, it’s important to keep your clean masks somewhere they will stay dry, keep their shape and stay separate from your dirty ones. Here are 7 possible mask organization solutions.
Repurpose a wall-mounted coat hanger
If you have an old coat hanger kicking around in your garage, now’s the perfect time to hang it up in your entryway. Or, shell out for a dedicated mask hanger—like the pretty one at the top of this story, from Etsy, $49.
Get some adhesive hooks
Grab a pack of adhesive hooks and stick them onto the wall near your home’s entrance for a quick mask organization solution.
Fill some baskets
Get a couple of cute baskets or bins to store your masks by the front door so you always have clean ones on hand when you’re rushing out.
Keep dirty masks in laundry bags
Need somewhere to keep your dirty masks? Store them in a mesh laundry bag and toss the whole thing into the washing machine when you wash your clothes.
Ikea must be working on better mask storage right? 😷 (But holiday tins it is for now) 🥰 pic.twitter.com/NXqHN2snRb
— sueriedl (@sueriedl) September 11, 2020
Upcycle your food storage containers (hello, cookie tins)
Round up some empty cookie tins and place your masks in them for an easy DIY solution.
Use tote bags, and your existing coat hooks or hangers
Need to separate a bunch of kids’ and adult masks, plus filters and mask bags? Make use of all those canvas tote bags you’ve collected over the years, and any existing coat hooks or hangers to corral and sort (added bonus: you can still hang your coat overtop). Or, shell out for a cute bag, like this one from Okayok.
Make your own indoor mask dryer
Use a coat hanger and some clothes pegs to make what is the world’s quickest craft project: a mask dryer. Or, if you just have a couple of masks to dry, repurpose an old hanger—the kind with clips on it.