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(Fast Company)   If you thought humans were disgusting stinkbags BEFORE the pandemic, then it should come as no surprise that 79% of Americans don't wash cloth face masks after each use (and 8% never wash their cloth face masks AT ALL)   ( divider line
    More: Sick  
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366 clicks; posted to STEM » on 24 Oct 2020 at 10:05 PM (18 weeks ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook

Voting Results (Smartest)
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2020-10-24 7:19:26 PM  
26 votes:
If you can smell someone's mask you are much too close to them.
2020-10-24 7:01:11 PM  
19 votes:
I wasn't aware that it really matters all that much. Isn't a mask supposed to stop me spraying in your face? A "dirty" mask does that just as well. Would it be nice if it was a clean mask? Sure. I'd rather you wear ANY mask versus no mask at all.
2020-10-24 10:16:04 PM  
11 votes:
Oh, okay.  I'll gladly stop reusing my N95s.  When we start making enough of them.
2020-10-24 8:13:45 PM  
9 votes:
I have about 20 cheap Haynes masks I use for work and 4-5 dressier masks. They all get washed regularly like the rest of my clothing. I think of them as underwear for my face.
2020-10-24 7:27:59 PM  
5 votes:
"Those nasty people with their unwashed masks" he typed, sitting in his semen-stained underwear, sweat matting the hair on his back.  Was it six days since his last shower or seven?  It doesn't really matter when you don't leave the house.
2020-10-25 12:41:44 AM  
4 votes:
One benefit of following the rules... is... counterintuitively.... not having to follow the rules.

Time and again, I see these articles saying that  you have to do this and you have to do that because otherwise someone is going to die. And you know what? That might be true. It might also be true that by going overkill in some area, you raise consciousness to the point that you are encouraging vigilance in some other area. Great. That is a benefit. Yay fear. Yay overkill.

But if everyone does the simple stuff, the infection rates plummet. Pretty soon, infectious people are out of the population and people become conscious that everyone is wearing a mask, probably for no reason. What happens then?

Stuff like this:

Hey, you forgot your mask. Oooops sorry. No problem.

Hey. Do you need a mask? I have an extra. No thanks. Got one.

Hey. That guy is not wearing a mask. Oh. Its probably ok. He probably just forgot.

And if the news announces that there was some outbreak across town, all the masks go on and people get a little antsy but dont get crazy about it. The contact tracing is top notch and the likely virus loads are low because people are ventilating and moving around and washing their hands. So the outbreak gets traced and nipped.

Until vaccines really kick in, that is as close to normal as things are going to get. It is not so bad. Several countries are already there... it is a weird zone somewhere between vigilance and complacency and everyone knows where it is instinctively after a while.
2020-10-24 7:09:26 PM  
4 votes:
Now people are going to use this study as an excuse not to wear reusable face masks. They've already got a ready-made argument against reusable grocery bags that they can't possibly be bothered to wash after each use.
2020-10-24 11:55:11 PM  
3 votes:
I mean, they pick up germs, but they're more or less entirely germs that came from the wearer's mouth, so they're either native microscopic flora, something you were already infected with, or something from food or drink yoy voluntarily put in said mouth.

Even if you never wash it, one of the basic rules prevents anyone else from handling it, so at the grossest you're maybe disrupting your facial bacteria to the tune of annoying acne that'll be hidden by the mask anyhow. See also: winter scarves, which do the same when it's cold enough to wear them up.

Note that no one freaks out about how doooooooom is coming when your scarf only gets washed once a week in the rainy part of winter? There you go, you're fine.

// I mean, I'd advise having a few masks to swap between laundry days because it might start to smell and because you should have a backup mask in general so you might as well.....
2020-10-24 10:57:22 PM  
3 votes:
I wear mine fit 30 seconds walking from the door of my company to my office wear I take it off.  Throughout the day, I wear it maybe 2 minutes.

I throw it away after a week or so and open a new one.

I keep four or five in my car for shopping or restaurants. I figure the UV rays kill most everything on them.
2020-10-24 10:10:59 PM  
3 votes:
I bought one of those lingerie laundry bags. I leave it on the washer and put my used masks in it. When it's full, it goes in the laundry. Easy peasy.
2020-10-24 10:10:46 PM  
3 votes:
When I need to wear a mask over the course of the day its definitely impacted my decisions about what I have for lunch, knowing I have to smell my own breath so intimately afterwards until I'm home.  Also been working the simple neutralizing power of dill pickles into my post-lunch routine for the same reasons.
2020-10-24 10:44:57 PM  
2 votes:

kyleaugustus: Tr0mBoNe: I have about 20 cheap Haynes masks I use for work and 4-5 dressier masks. They all get washed regularly like the rest of my clothing. I think of them as underwear for my face.

Are we really doing pandemic fashion?

I do. I have masks that go with what I'm wearing.
2020-10-24 8:07:53 PM  
2 votes:

foo monkey: PainInTheASP: You could stretch it a little longer by using your underpants as a mask too. Though you may want to give some thought to the rotation strategy.

monsatano: I also do that with my underpants, and then repeat the process when I'm using them as a mask.

puffy999: I do that, and then rotate with my underpants before washing.

I think you guys might be on to something.  Or just on something.

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2020-10-25 1:06:02 PM  
1 vote:

Raoul Eaton: If you can smell someone's mask you are much too close to them.

One positive thing to come out of this situation is that I can continue to recoil in horror and immediately flee at the sight of another human being and not be thought of as weird
2020-10-25 1:01:24 AM  
1 vote:
Do I wash them every time?  No.  For a ten minute trip in and out of the store to get some things we need, it's being ridiculous unless some asshole was coughing on you or something.  After about 30m-an hour of cumulative use (or a week, sometimes that does come first - we try like hell to stay home) then into the wash they go.  Sheesh.  Do you immediately decide a shirt/pants/even underwear is irrevocably contaminated and must be cleanted because you wore it for 10 minutes in moderate weather?

/yeah moderate weather does have to go in there
//I've been in climate that irrevocably contaminates anything the minute it touches you
///100+/high 90's humidity is a different ballgame for anything you wear
2020-10-24 11:29:31 PM  
1 vote:
What for? It serves its intended purpose (keeping my particles away from you). And my face doesn't make it dirty.
2020-10-24 10:24:46 PM  
1 vote:
if you click through, the survey actually says:

46% who use reusable cloth masks wash their masks daily or after each use


o 43% wash their reusable cloth mask weekly

so, yeah, the article is crap.
2020-10-24 6:50:15 PM  
1 vote:
I just turn mine inside-out, then upside down, like my underpants.
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