Best COVID face masks for kids: KN95, disposable, cloth and more

For probably the most up-to-date information and details about the coronavirus pandemic, go to the WHO and CDC web sites.

Beginning college will be one of the vital nerve-racking occasions of 12 months for folks — do you have got every part you want? Most back-to-school lists embody college garments, provides, a lunchbox, a backpack, and now, a masks.

The extremely contagious delta and delta plus variants of the coronavirus persevering with to unfold throughout the US possible have you ever paying particular consideration to which masks you must use to guard your little one and others after they return to school and social actions. Masking guidelines are designed to guard little ones under the age of 12 who aren’t yet eligible to receive a COVID-19 vaccine. Whereas breakthrough infections not often lead to hospitalization, carrying masks if you happen to’re vaccinated provides an additional layer of safety — and can assist stop you from presumably spreading COVID-19 to extra weak members of your loved ones or the neighborhood. 

The steerage has advanced over the previous months as to the kind of masks for teenagers that may greatest shield in opposition to COVID-19’s unfold. And even when your kid’s college does not require masks carrying, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that each one college students and employees put on a masks, even when they’re absolutely vaccinated. 

Whereas CNET has not formally reviewed and examined face masks, we spoke to medical specialists for the most up-to-date face mask guidance and drew from CDC suggestions to formulate our knowledgeable selections of one of the best youngsters’ face masks, together with disposable KN95 mask fashions for smaller faces. Plus, we’re together with some fashions that our employees have utilized in their very own household environments, comparable to reusable face masks with adjustable nostril wire bridges and elastic ear loop straps for a safe match and better consolation throughout all-day put on, and waterproof reusable masks which might be good for sports activities.

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New CDC face masks steerage

With breakthrough COVID-19 instances on the rise, CDC face masks steerage has shifted. It as soon as stated that absolutely vaccinated folks not have to put on masks, however now recommends wearing a face mask indoors — particularly in areas of excessive transmission — because of the delta variant.

The advice hasn’t modified for many who are unvaccinated. Anybody who can get vaccinated ought to achieve this. For individuals who cannot — comparable to these underneath 12 — the CDC nonetheless says they need to proceed carrying a masks in all public indoor settings, even when it isn’t an space of excessive transmission. That goes for teenagers 2 years outdated and up.

Key phrases for masks buying: N95, KN95, KF94, NIOSH and extra

  • On the prime of your buying record needs to be N95, KN95 or KF94 masks. That is the US, China and South Korea requirements, respectively, designed to filter out 95% (N95, KN95) or 94% (KF94) of exterior particles. 
  • Within the US, an N95 masks must be approved by the Meals and Drug Administration in addition to the Nationwide Institute for Occupational Security and Well being with a view to qualify for medical use. 
  • As a result of the KN95 and KF94 aren’t regulated by US authorities, it is a bit trickier to know you are getting the actual deal and counterfeit masks have abounded all through the pandemic. The FDA accepted certain KN95s underneath an Emergency Use Authorization in 2020, and whereas that authorization has expired, the record of FDA-approved producers remains to be a useful useful resource. The CDC additionally maintains a list of non-NIOSH-approved masks which have gone via filtration testing. Nonetheless, even when they do not meet NIOSH requirements for filtration efficacy, KN95 masks are nonetheless in all probability more likely to provide better protection than a material masks.
  • Ignore the time period “FDA registered” when purchasing for masks. Because the FDA notes on its website, amenities “concerned within the manufacturing and distribution of medical gadgets meant to be used in america are usually required to register yearly with the FDA.” However, importantly, the “FDA’s registration and itemizing database doesn’t denote approval, clearance or authorization of that facility or its medical gadgets.”

Essential issues to know when shopping for face masks for teenagers

  • In case your little one is unvaccinated, immunocompromised or at the next threat for COVID-19, we advocate double-masking with a disposable masks beneath for additional safety if a N95, KN95 or KF94 is not obtainable. 
  • In case your little one wears glasses, take into account kinds that go across the again of the top or neck, as a substitute of ear loops. Additionally, a contoured face masks form may go greatest with glasses.
  • In case your little one has respiratory issues, comparable to bronchial asthma that’s well-controlled, the American Lung Association says they need to be capable to put on a face overlaying with out affecting their oxygen ranges, however “mother and father can purchase or determine a facial overlaying that’s comfy for his or her youngsters to put on.”
  • We advocate shopping for a number of face masks on your little one to rotate out all through the day.
  • The docs we spoke to stated that material face masks alone are not really useful and recommended them solely when double-masking. (See under for extra.) 
  • Is your child lively? Some corporations are utilizing a light-weight, moisture-wicking material face masks material, like cotton, which is best suited to the summer time warmth. (Once more, that is recommended as a part of a double-masking routine, no less than when indoors.)

N95, KN95 and KF94 face masks


Vida has KN95 face masks for teenagers with a five-layer filtration system. You may get a 10-pack of those disposable masks for $35.


ZDNet’s Alyson Windsor says it is vital that her youngsters put on extremely protecting, well-fitting masks in public because of their immune points, and he or she’s discovered Protectly — a California-manufactured KN95 masks — to be their favourite. “These are comfy and simple to breathe in whereas becoming snugly — no nostril gaps!” Alyson stated. You may get a 10-pack of the disposable masks proper now for $27.50 on sale.

Screenshot by Katie Teague/CNET

Grainger’s Moldex masks are NIOSH-certified N95 masks that CNET’s Brian Bennett says are perfect “for the super-COVID-paranoid mother and father like me.” You may get a pack of 20 for $41.37.


Powecom’s KN95s are priced at simply $5.45 for a pack of 10. The masks have 5 layers with adjustable ear loops and are available from an EUA-authorized Chinese language producer. 


WWDoll’s KN95 masks have 5 layers of cloth, a foldable 3D form, ear loops and an adjustable nostril clip bridge for a safe match. They’re manufactured in a manufacturing unit in China that is on the FDA’s EUA record, and you will get a masks pack of 25 for $30. 

Different disposable face masks

ICU Well being

ICU Well being disposable face masks supply three layers of safety and an adjustable nostril bridge to suit your kid’s face. You may get a pack of 20 for simply $10.


WeCare’s disposable face masks have three layers and are individually sealed, so you may simply retailer one in your kid’s backpack. They arrive in a field of fifty for $25.

Screenshot by Katie Teague/CNET

Simply Play’s disposable face masks have three layers with an adjustable nostril piece and are available in sizes small (youngsters ages 2-7) and enormous (ages 8 and older). Every field has 24 masks and in two designs for $18.

Fabric masks

Dr. Bob Lahita, director of the Institute for Autoimmune and Rheumatic Illness at St. Joseph Well being, informed CNET that he is steering folks away from material masks versus the N95, KN95 and KF94 masks listed above. However there’s an outer-layer loophole, says Dr. Bob Bollinger, professor of infectious illnesses at Johns Hopkins College College of Medication and founding father of Emocha Well being: double-masking. If you cannot discover an N95, KN95 or KF94, ” high quality disposable masks underneath a material masks is an inexpensive various, so long as the match on the face, nostril and mouth is tight.”

Underneath Armour

For kicds who play sports activities, the Underneath Armour Sportsmask may also help enhance airflow with its waterproof material. It additionally offers UPF 50+ solar safety. ZDNet’s Larry Dignan says his youngsters hold coming again to the UA masks and that he is been carrying them to the fitness center as nicely.

Vista Print

Vistaprint has contoured face masks with adjustable ear loops and adjustable nostril items for teenagers.

Outdated Navy

Old Navy has tons of reusable face masks in several colours and designs on your toddler. The fabric face coverings are produced from 100% cotton and have three layers.

This story has been utterly up to date and revised to replicate new recommendation and proposals as of August 2021.


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The knowledge contained on this article is for academic and informational functions solely and isn’t meant as well being or medical recommendation. All the time seek the advice of a doctor or different certified well being supplier concerning any questions you could have a couple of medical situation or well being targets. being/parenting/best-masks-for-kids/#ftag=CADf328eec | Finest COVID face masks for teenagers: KN95, disposable, material and extra


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