How to Wear Face Masks in Public in 2021

A clean mask that covers your nose and mouth is sufficient. But a pure face mask alone won't keep you safe when you head to a restaurant, the gym, or the grocery store. Learn the dos and don'ts of masking wearing so you can minimize the risk to yourself and others.

Working out

Exercise during a pandemic does a body good in more ways than one, but in a gym environment, there's only so much you can do to keep a safe distance from others. That's where good N95 face masks like those from Green Supply come into play. Keep your face mask on as you progress through your workout, swapping out with a new one if yours becomes too sweaty. A sweat-laden face mask won't protect you from the coronavirus, so bring extra face masks with you in sealed, separate plastic storage bags.

While a gym with high ceilings and open windows or doors is especially welcome during the pandemic, you still need to play it safe. Skip the drinking fountain; when you need to hydrate or swap masks, step outside. Use antibacterial wipes on your favorite gym equipment before you hop on and when you're finished, and regularly use hand sanitizer.

Dining Out

Protect yourself, support your area businesses with a carryout order, and wear your mask to pick it up. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) considers indoor dining a higher-risk activity. If you absolutely must dine out, have a seat outside where tables are set at least six feet apart in the open air. 

Remove your mask after you snag an outdoor table and only if you are actively eating or drinking. Your cover should never go around your neck, your arm, on your head, or the table or empty seat next to you. Bring a small paper bag for a safe, risk-free place to set your mask.

Repeated handling of your mask increases your risk, so carry another N95 face mask with you. Limit your contact with your server by making sure you have whatever you need, and skip the special requests that result in an extra conversation. Do switch out your mask if you are making a lot of mask-on, mask-off motions your visit. 

Grocery shopping

When you hit the grocery store, don't wait until you are almost inside to put your mask on. People are zipping around pushing carts, herding kids, and trying to get in and out of the store and parking lot as fast as humanly possible. Don't add to the chaos. 

Before you leave your car, be a good neighbor and put on your mask. It should stay in place without adjustment and any gaps or bunches. Keep your face mask on as long as you are in the store (and preferably the parking lot, too). 

While grocery stores do sanitize carts, it doesn't hurt to wipe down the handle on your own. Use hand sanitizer when you enter the store and again when you leave. Maintain six feet of distance, even in the checkout line, and skip the in-store coffee shop. 

Wearing your mask in public

You don't have to ditch your favorite routines; you just have to put a little thought into your outings. Covid-19 spreads via respiratory droplets, and nothing sprays them around more than talking, eating, and working out. Wear your mask at all times in public to keep you and everyone around you safe.

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