How do I clean my cloth face masks?
All masks are 100% washable by hand or by machine (preferably tucked inside a delicates bag) on cold or warm water wash and air dry. Remember to remove your filter from the filter pocket - set it aside: do not wash the filter. You can toss the mask in the washing load along with your clothing. Make sure your elastic/jersey toggles are pushed up so they don't slip off during the washing process. When you're drying the mask, reshape it to dry as if it were on a face. Warm or steam iron on them is fine, just be sure not to scorch the elastic.
How long will my filter last? Do I wash it?
PM2.5 filters should not be washed. They should be aired out during the washing of your masks. Each filter has about a 24-hour long life span (that is in continuous wearing hours). Therefore, if you wear your mask for no longer than an hour at a time, your filter, with proper care and treatment should last for 24 trips!
What size am I?
Sizes range from infant to Adult Large. The best way to determine your mask size is by measuring - don't assume your clothing size or age best determines your face mask size. The top of your mask should fit no taller than the bottom of the nosepiece of a pair of eyeglasses and the tip of your mask should hit at least at the tip of the chin.
To measure, apply a flexible measuring tape or a piece of string to the the top of where your eyeglasses would hit around the nose piece and lay the measuring device over the top of the bridge of the nose, over the lips and to the tip of the chin. This is your approximate size, in inches. Below, you will find corresponding numbers. If you find you're in between sizes, know the mask is made to allow room to move your mouth for talking. The mask width will not matter much, it's more important to be sure you have proper nose to mouth coverage.
Adult Large is the best default for adult males, taller individuals, and those with more prominent facial features and fuller faces. Adult Large mask is 6 inches top to botton.
Adult Small/Medium (this is a combined size and is one "together" size) is a good default size for small to medium-framed adults and teens. Adult Small/Medium mask is 5.5 inches top to bottom.
Youth is a good size for elementary to middle-school aged children 7-12. If your child is on the cusp of two sizes, it's best to use logic if your child tends to be below or above average in clothing sizes and in both weight and height. Youth mask is 5 inches top to bottom.
Child is a good size for preschool and early elementary-aged children 2-6. If your child is at the cusp of two sizes, it's best to use logic if your child tends to be below or above average in clothing sizes and in both weight and height. Child mask is 4.5 inches top to bottom.
Toddler mask best fits infants around 6 months (being able to sit upright alone and unassisted) to and through 2 years old. The CDC does not recommend children under the age of 2 to wear a cloth mask, so it is recommended that these masks be worn only when absolutely medically necessary (such as wellness visits) and used only under intense adult supervision (such as being in a carrier with you vs being unattended inside a car seat). Infant mask is 4 inches top to bottom.
When can I expect my order to arrive?
All masks are custom-made to your order's specifications. Depending on order volume, mask turn around time can be as soon as one day and up to 5 days from ordering. If, for some reason, your order will be delayed more than 5 days from your ordering date - you will be contacted. Please note: USPS is now having MAJOR shipping delays on both First Class and Priority mail. Since the new system has been in place, I have experienced many delays both local and cross-country from as long as one to two weeks to get less than 30 miles away to almost a month to get to as far as California from Illinois. I apologize for the new delays, but this is not on my end but I will work with you to be sure you get your order!
Why are your masks now all 3-ply? I bought one from you earlier and it was only 2 layers - why the change?
The World Health Organization now recommends all cloth face masks be 3-ply. As science expands our knowledge of what is needed to keep individuals safe, I respond, as an artist and a maker, to be sure my products meet the rigid requirements recommended by health officials for cloth facial coverings. The only 2-ply masks that I offer in my shop are the PE SportTek masks. If you are not interested in the new 3-ply mask and would like a fashion fabric mask to be made the classic 2-ply way instead, simply leave a note at check out or send me a message and I would be happy to make a design change for your order at no charge, however there is no discount for decreasing the number of fabric layers in your mask order.
What is this new "PE" fabric added layer?
The newer Polyethylene "PE" layer is my newest, most exciting addition to Tif Bullard masks. I searched the market for non-toxic moisture barrier layers to add into my masks and found one that actually exceeded my expectations. The brand of PE fabric I use is extremely high quality and has tremendous moisture-wicking abilities. This additional layer not only adds a filtration later, but is also a layer that adds more mask stability - leaving extra room for the mouth to move more freely. Most companies add either a simple extra layer of cotton, a layer of quilting batting, or a layer or heat-set interfacing that is completely full of toxins. My PE fabric is infused with silver ions directly into the weave, is Greenguard Gold certified (meaning it meets the most highest industry standards), and Prop 65 compliant. So, this new additional layer adds more filtration while at the same time assists with wicking away moisture from the mask on your end (and a moisture barrier coming into your mask) and increases stability. Of all customers who have tested this new design, I have had only one who is unhappy with this upgrade. And while this upgrade comes with a definite price to add to the masks, I have decided to remain loyal to my customers considering the majority of them are in financial hardships and have vowed to keep my mask prices the same, regardless of product innovation and upgrades in materials. You can be assured that your mask is not downgraded in quality, it's simply my promise to you that I care about you and feel you deserve high quality cloth mask protection at a reasonable cost.
My nose wire fell out of the tube! Help!
The nose wire is meant to be able to be replaced and may fall out during washing. Simply re-thread it inside the nose wire tube on the inside filter pocket layer. Over time, the nose wire will lose it's intensity and will need to be replaced. You can buy replacement nose wires in the Mask Maintenance section of my store.
I scorched my elastic, or lost a toggle, now what?
I offer replacement mask maintenance kits with nose wires, elastic, jersey, toggles, and extra filters in my Mask Maintenance section of my store.
I hate elastic - what other tie options do you offer?
I do have white and black jersey - it was an unpopular choice throughout my mask making time, but took the options off of my main elastic drop down menus to have less confusion. In the notes at check out just write what color jersey ties you would like (white or black) and what orientation (behind the EARS or behind the HEAD). For sake of ordering, just choose the color that orientation as elastic and I will substitute the jersey for the elastic.
What are your studio safety protocols?
My home studio is located inside my home. I live in a pet-free, smoke-free environment. All fabrics are pre-washed in Ecos Free and Clear laundry detergent. I sew and process with extremely clean, newly washed hands and regularly sanitize my work tools, high touch areas, and environment with Lysol and Force of Nature cleaners.
What is the status of the health in your home?
I have remained in quarantine as of March 8, and my husband, my 3 children and I are practicing extreme social distancing and only leaving the home for essentials. My husband is our grocery and outside-the-home warrior and I do not do any outside shopping (I prioritize online buying and curbside pick-up). We are not participating in any family or friends visiting, no religious gatherings, no salon or gym visits, no outside cleaning (never had a cleaning service anyway!), and my children are not in any outside activities and we homeschool already (regardless of Covid). My husband is working from home most definitely through the New Year. My only job at the moment is a stay-at-home mama and an artist. Your safety is most important to me. Therefore, if I found that we were in a position where one of us was questionably ill, I would stop production and give you the option to delay your order until we are all well - or cancel your order should your order be pending during this unfortunate time. Fingers crossed, this never happens!
How many masks have you sewn so far?
Upwards of 1,300 Masks as of the first week of April. I have donated my masks as well to healthcare workers, first responders, Covid-19 affected families, immunocompromised individuals, Black Lives Matter, Salt Drop NYC, artists, protestors, volunteers, unemployed individuals, LGBTQ community, Elgin Women's Shelter, and more.
I am interested in a custom-fabric, or want to request that you consider carrying a fabric with a specific theme, or want to collaborate with you on creating masks for me/my company/organization - how can I do this?
Please send me a message and I will do my best to help you price out a specific fabric request to personalize your mask dreams or help you with custom made masks for a place of business or special event. The sky is truly the limit with fabric - you can even design your own! However, please note, due to health concerns, I am unable to use your own personal fabric mailed to me for me to process. All fabric we agree on must be in new condition.
Can I return my mask, I bought the wrong size!
Unfortunately, due to a cloth face mask being a highly personalized product, all mask sales are FINAL SALE. Each mask is custom made for your individual order. I suggest you do your best to pass along your washed cloth face mask to a family member or close friend who wouldn't mind using your size. However, if for any reason there is a serious construction issue or a quality issue that does not meet your expectation, please bring it to my attention and together we can come up with a fair solution.