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Making fit adjustments to your fabric face mask

Posted by Jo McMahon on

The rules requiring face masks to be worn in Victoria (and other parts of the world) have been rapidly introduced, in response to Covid-19 community transmission. 

As we begin wearing masks out in public, we soon discover that mask styles and construction can vary.  It is important to adjust your mask to fit you as snugly and securely as possible, as this reduces the likelihood of you touching your face and mask, and makes it comfortable to wear for longer periods of time.

A few factors can affect the fit of your mask - the style (pattern) of the mask, the type of fastenings, the materials used and the nose shape.  You may need to try a few different styles to find the one that works best for you, but you can also try some tweaks to get your current mask working for you.


Adjust your ear loops

If your mask has ear loops, these should be adjusted to fit the size you require (often this means shortening them).  To shorten shirring elastic ear loops, simply tie a new knot in the elastic below the original knot.  For thicker elastic you may need to untie the original knot.

Alternatives to ear loops

If you wear glasses, you may be able to attach a button to the arms of your glasses with a tiny elastic band (loom band), and connect your ear loops to this instead of your ears.  Buttons can also be attached to baseball caps if they are worn, or a small toy (barrel of monkeys), hair clip etc. could be used to connect both ear loops behind your head.

Swapping ear loops for ties

If you prefer to use ties, you can remove the ear loop elastic and thread your tie fabric through the ear loop channels.  A safety pin or darning needle may assist with this.  

Add a nose wire

I have included an instruction on making and inserting a removable nose wire for pocket face masks which do not have a nose wire built in.  

Removable nose wire for fabric mask instruction

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