Face Mask Adaptations for Improved Comfort

When you’re wearing a mask for a long time, the ear loops can be an issue

We’ve all seen the images circulating of nurses and doctors after 12+ hour shifts with deep lines from the masks and red marks from wearing their masks. If you’re making your own fabric face masks at home, there are ways to modify the design or how it is worn so that it is comfortable for long periods of wear.

Check out some of the crowd-sourced ideas below of adaptations to make your face mask more comfortable.

Using Buttons and Ribbons

They’re great for allowing a custom fit! Just loop elastic over extra times around the buttons to keep mask from sagging and leaving dangerous gaps!

We got out the leftover ribbon and buttons from prior random projects for this new project, “save the ears”. The first set was a couple of inches long and the second set about three inches.

Bridgette C McQuaig via FB

Button + Headband Solution

For a true fashion statement that doubles as an ear-saving solution, sew a button an any headband, and loop the elastic on the facemask to the button instead of to the ears. Voila!


3D-Printed Surgical Mask Strap

Link to 3D Printed file

This one comes to us from an enterprising and tech-savvy Canadian Boy Scout named Quinn!

“Quinn answered a request from the local hospitals for help with creating “ear guards” to help take the pressure off health care workers ears from wearing masks all day. He got busy on his 3D printer and has been turning out dozens of ear guards to donate.


Chin Dart + Elastic Band

This simple solution was originally an adaptation for an elderly friend who found the elastic too uncomfortable and ties too difficult for arthritic fingers.

Ties are 14”, 1/2” elastic sized to head, in this case, 5” with 1/2” seam. Also added a chin dart to simple pleated mask to help define bottom and to improve fit. 


And Just For Fun, One to Make Your Mask More Fashionable

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