Easy DIY face mask

EMMA LEDBETTER, Evergreen news editor

In order to prevent the spread of COVID-19, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends wearing a face mask whenever social distancing may be difficult or impossible — including at the grocery store, pharmacy or doctor’s office. 

Due to the shortage of personal protective equipment, actual surgical masks are in short supply. Luckily, there are many tutorials online for how to make your own mask or face covering at home. 

You don’t have to be handy with a needle and thread to make this quick and easy no-sew mask and keep yourself and others safe. 

Surgeon General Jerome Adams made a YouTube tutorial for how to quickly make this face covering from a t-shirt and two rubber bands. 

I found that a t-shirt is a bit too thick to stay put on my face. You can substitute for a bandana, scarf or any other piece of cotton fabric you have at home. Walmart also has plenty of cheap fabric squares that come in dozens of fun patterns. 

The rubber bands can be replaced with hair ties, string or any other (preferably stretchy) material you have to secure the mask to your face. 

  1. Fold or cut your t-shirt or fabric into a square.
  2. Take the top edge of the square and fold it to the center. Now take the bottom edge and fold it to the center.
  3. You should now have a crease at the top and bottom of the fabric. Take the top crease and fold it to the center of the fabric (this is just repeating the previous fold you did with the edge). Repeat with the bottom crease.
  4. Your fabric should now look like it is folded “hotdog style” — a narrow rectangle. 
  5. Take one rubber band and put it around the narrow end of one side of the rectangle. Use the other rubber band and do the same on the other side. 
  6. Fold the extra fabric on the outside of the rubber band to the middle. Repeat on the other side.
  7. When you look at the mask, you should have the extra end fabric on the inside, next to your mouth and nose. Use the rubber bands to attach the covering to your ears.

I recommend this mask for quick outings, like getting gas or picking up a prescription. I tried to wear it for a couple hours and found that the rubber bands hurt my ears after a while. If the fabric edges don’t stay in place, you can use a safety pin to hold them together. 

This mask is not meant to replace an N95 or surgical grade mask.