As the current COVID-19 health crisis continues to progress and states begin to ease restrictions, cloth face masks will continue to be encouraged if not mandatory in public spaces to keep the virus from spreading from person to person. Although the majority of serious infections and deaths continue to take place among older populations, no one is immune from this disease. There have also been recent cases of a serious inflammatory response in children. We don’t know much about this mysterious condition except that it’s already put hundreds of young kids in the hospital. Although rare, the threat is real, and we all need to take precautions.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has specific guidelines for protecting kids from the coronavirus, and they’re worth reading in full if you have little ones to care for. That means everyone over the age of two needs to wear a cloth face mask or face covering. Ideally, everyone in your family will have a few washable masks to rotate between throughout the week. There are plenty of adult face masks and running face masks, but what about children? Because masks should fit snugly around the mouth and nose (without restricting breathing, of course), face masks made for adults won’t always provide a secure fit for our smaller family members.
Luckily, more manufacturers are taking this into account and producing children’s face masks as well. We’ve gathered a bunch of different options to highlight for all genders and styles so no matter what age your child is or what they’re interested in, you’ll be able to find the right mask for them.
When Should Children Be Wearing Face Masks?
The CDC has the same guidelines for adults and children over the age of two. Wash your hands. Keep your distance. Wear face coverings in public.
Anytime your child is outside and within six feet of others, they should be wearing a mask. If you’re going for a walk and your child is six feet away from others and isn’t touching high-touch public surfaces like benches, water fountains and playgrounds, there’s less of a need for a face covering.
What If My Child Is Afraid of Wearing a Face Mask?
Adults aren’t the only ones feeling stressed out. Face masks and face coverings are something all of us are getting used to, and this reaction is quite normal from a child who’s always grown up in a world where you can see someone’s entire face. If your child is afraid of wearing the face mask, put them on at home together and look in the mirror. Explain why they’re important. Put one on a favorite stuffed animal or toy so they can match. Show your child pictures of other kids who are also wearing face masks, and start out wearing them at home for a short amount of time until they get used to it.
Should Babies Wear Face Masks?
The CDC says that anyone under the age of two, or anyone with breathing challenges, should not wear face masks so as to not obstruct their breathing. That means most infants and young toddlers should not be placed in masks, which may be dangerous. Also, if you notice that a face mask or covering makes it harder for your child to breathe, or they are touching their face more because of it, you may want to consider other options.
The Best Face Masks for Kids for Sale Online
Just like face masks for adults, you can find face coverings in a variety of sizes, styles and designs. There are fun prints and character-based face masks (yes, there are even Baby Yoda face masks for sale). In addition, there are plain cotton masks that still get the job done.
When looking for the best face masks for kids online, you want to find reusable masks that can be thrown in the wash multiple times. Some of these masks tie behind the head, while others feature an elastic loop that goes behind the years.
Right now, a lot of the best kid’s face masks are only available via pre-order, so read carefully if you need masks right away. You can also make your own face masks at home using old fabric or cool bandanas.
1. Cubcoats Face Masks for Kids 2-Pack
These face masks from Cubcoats are the perfect face mask for children as they’re comfortable, protective and themed like their favorite cuddly stuffed animal. Cubcoats is a children’s clothing line who knows what kids like and need, and now they’ve dedicated some of their manufacturing efforts to making these protective masks.
They’re made with two layers of fabric and have a pocket for an air filter if you wish to insert one. They’ve got a shapeable metal nose clip and elastic straps so you’re sure to find a comfy fit, and they come in two different colors for girls and boys.
2. Disney Cloth Face Masks 4-Pack (Pre-Order)
This pack of face masks from Disney is adorable and available for pre-order now. They’re expected to have availability in mid-July, so you’ll need something else before then, but since we’re going to be wearing face masks for a while you might as well invest in a design your kids will love. They can dress up like their favorite characters and protect others at the same time.
These masks come in small, medium and large and are not made for children under four years old. A portion of the proceeds goes towards face masks and coverings for families and communities in need. Check out the Disney Store to find masks featuring characters like Mickey Mouse, R2-D2 and Baby Yoda.
3. Los Angeles Apparel Kids Face Mask 3-Pack
Los Angeles Apparel’s face mask set comes sized for children as well in black, heather grey and royal blue. The face masks are made of 100% cotton and have an adjustable nose clip for comfort and a tight fit. They’re also made with two straps you can tie to your exact comfort level behind the head and neck. They’re machine washable and can be put in the dryer so disinfecting between uses is easy. In our testing, these masks provide a secure fit and don’t feel too tight around the nose.
4. Uncommon Goods Children’s Face Coverings 2-Pack
Who doesn’t love sunshine and rainbows? Even though the world is a little scarier right now for all of us, it doesn’t mean we can’t have fun patterns on our protective face masks. These face masks for kids have a design on them drawn by children and 100% of the proceeds goes towards New York public hospitals. The two layers of tightly-woven fabric are joined with two elastic ear loops that wrap tightly and protect for a snug fit. They’re made for children ages 4-12 and are machine washable.
5. Sanctuary Clothing Kids PPE Mask 5-Pack (Pre-Order)
This 5-Pack of personal protective equipment (PPE) face masks for kids from Sanctuary Clothing is available for pre-order and comes in some of their signature prints. Make your kids excited to wear face masks with these fun patterns and rest assured knowing they’re protected with a double fabric layer and content filter. They’re made to dispose of after a few uses, or you can hand wash them and let them air dry for disinfecting.
6. Avocado Organic Cotton Kids Face Mask 4-Pack
The makers at Avocado are dedicated to using high-quality, sustainable materials in the production of their bedding and home goods, and that applies to their production of face masks as well. They’ve made organic cotton face masks for adults and children that you can order through their website. The face masks have two layers of fabric and tie straps you can tighten or loosen to your child’s liking. They also have a pocket for a filter insert.
7. Shein Toddler Graphic Face Mask
This cartoon graphic face mask is made for toddlers and comes in two different designs to mix and match with different outfits. The face mask fits true to size and comes with two ear loops that will fit snuggly around your child’s ears and won’t slip, slide or cause discomfort.
8. Old Navy Variety 5-Pack Face Masks for Kids
This variety 5-pack from Old Navy has enough masks to keep you and the family covered throughout the pandemic and beyond with fun patterns and colors. They’re all one size and come in a surprise pack so you’ll know the exact colors once you receive them. They’re all reusable and designed per the CDC recommendations. They’re made of 3-ply woven cotton, are breathable and have elastic ear straps for comfort and protection. Currently, these masks are back-ordered, but Old Navy expects to ship orders by mid-June.
9. meakeize Kids Full-Coverage Face Mask Bandana
Keep it simple and give your kids something comfy and comprehensive with this full face mask bandana. It comes in a whole variety of patterns and is made with breathable, 100% microfiber polyester to keep skin healthy. Not only is it protective from air particles and virus-spreading, but it also has UV protection built-in for the warmer summer months spent outside playing. There are 12+ ways for your child to wear it, and they’ll be able to use it on the slopes, hiking and running long after this health crisis is over.
Buy: Kids Full-Coverage Face Mask Bandana $16.99