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D. Lacquaniti Bespoke making masks amid coronavirus pandemic (WINK News)

How you can make a CDC approved facemask

Homemade masks are making the difference for health care workers in Southwest Florida.

Just this week, Lee Health posted a photo of the emergency department staff at Golisano Children’s Hospital wearing masks made by the mom of a Health Park employee.

If you don’t want to fuss with sewing, the CDC has a couple of suggestions.

One, take an old shirt and cut off the bottom. Cut out a section to make straps and this can serve as your mask. Two, you can also use a bandana. Fold it up, place a coffee filter in the middle if you want, and use something like hair ties to secure it around your ears.

Both of these take less than 10 minutes to make, but if you don’t have an old shirt or bandana, that’s OK.

Take a look around your house – the CDC says an old scarf, towel or pillowcase will also work.

They recommend you use cotton, but what if you’re unsure about the material?

Hold it up to a bright light, and if you see light between the fibers, it’s not a good filter.

For those who want to try their hand at sewing, take advice from Rosemary Meek, who has helped make dozens of masks for local health care workers.

“Take two pieces of fabric 9×6 inches – you put right sides together and sew the ends, then add straps and then pin it. Run that down with your sewing machine and you’re done,” Meek said.

And for a bonus layer of protection, you can use an air conditioning filter that you buy at Home Depot. You must get the one that’s the highest premium quality; it’ll say that it filters viruses. Cut the filter fabric and you slip it in the mask.

Anything to cover your face is better than nothing. Remember: you need to wash the reusable mask when you take it off, and clean your hands before you touch anything else — otherwise, it defeats the purpose.

The CDC even offers a pattern for face masks whether you sew or not. For more information on DIY masks visit the CDC website here.

Writer:Lincoln Saunders
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