With all 50 states in the U.S. moving to reopen local businesses in some way despite the ongoing threat from the coronavirus, millions of Americans who have yet to get a face mask are under pressure to acquire one quickly.
The good news is fashion designers and apparel companies have risen to the occasion since the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended that all Americans wearin public to avoid transmitting the virus to others, and are fabricating masks for general use. The bad news: Masks are in such high demand that if you order one now it could take several weeks to arrive. See below for a list of some of the most popular options.
The CDC is still urging the general public not to wear surgical masks or N95 respirators, which are in short supply, in order to save them for health care workers. But a basic cloth face covering islike grocery stores and pharmacies, where it's hard to avoid coming into close contact with others.
For now, disposable face masks are not immediately available across many large retailers' websites, including on Amazon.com, where a pack of 50 disposable face covers won't be delivered until June. Single-use face masks with ear loops are also sold out at Cvs.com.
So where can you find a mask, and how quickly will you get one? Here are some companies that are making and selling masks to the public.
Canvas tote bag maker Apolis, known for its chic, sustainable market bags, is selling customizable cotton face masks for $19 each. Mask sewers in Mexico receive certified fair wages, while purchases benefit non-profit Baby2Baby, a national network that donates essential goods to children living in poverty. Masks ship in 14 days and are returnable for 30 days.
Banana Republic is selling a microfiber face mask for $20. It features an adjustable wire at the nose for a secure fit. It is machine washable and ships right away.
Birdwell, a California surfwear brand, has pivoted from making board shorts to sewing masks. It's selling reusable masks made from a stretchy swimwear material for general use, and also donating masks to front-line workers through actor Sean Penn's non-profit CORE. Masks cost $19.95 and ship within three to five business days.
Classic menswear maker Buck Mason is selling a 5-pack of non-medical, reusable cotton face masks with anti-microbial properties. While its design isn't a replacement for medical-grade personal protective equipment, the company is donating 100,000 washable masks to essential workers in California.
"The transition from a manufacturing standpoint was quite seamless, as we're sewing cotton with single-needle stitching, a technique that is very common in apparel production," Buck Mason co-founder Sasha Koehn told CBS MoneyWatch.
Making masks has also helped the manufacturer keep its workforce employed even as many fashion brands scale back, Koehn said.
Online custom t-shirt maker Custom Ink has recently begun selling cloth masks made from a soft jersey fabric for use by the general public outside of the home. The online retailer is selling 12-piece "family packs" for $30 each and 120-unit packs for $240. Masks come in black and are machine cut from a single piece of fabric. They are estimated to ship on May 18.
Online marketplace Etsy, which features homemade wares from thousands of sellers, said it has seen demand for fabric face coverings spike since the CDC made its recommendation. It has sold hundreds of thousands of masks, with more than 10,000 sellers making a mask sale in the last week, CEO Josh Silverman wrote in a recent blog post. The company is encouraging those who possess the skills and materials to consider creating and selling masks on Etsy.
Family-owned, sustainable surf and lifestyle clothing company Faherty is making soft cloth masks in patterns inspired by indigenous artists. They cost $10 each. The company is donating 100% of the proceeds from sales to UnitedNatives.org. They are machine-washable and can be worn over and over again.
Silicone kitchen tool company GIR, which usually makes spatulas, spoons, straws and baking mats, has added a reusable face mask to its repertoire. The $15 silicone mask comes in seven colors and includes five disposable filters. New orders ship within two to three weeks of their order date.
Felt trivet-maker Graf Lantz is now making two styles of organic cotton face masks — one with ear loops and the other with over-the-head straps — in a variety of earthy tones. A single mask costs $19 and is available for delivery in two weeks. Three packs cost $57.
Apparel brand Grayers is selling four-ply, non-medical face masks that can be adjusted for a comfortable fit. They are sold in five-packs for $35. They are washable and reusable up to 60 times.
Hedley & Bennett
Chef wear company Hedley & Bennett has retooled its factory in Vernon, California, to produce masks it designed in tandem with a pediatric orthopedic surgeon. It says the items are not FDA-approved and are not substitutes for surgical masks or N95 respirators. But they are suitable for the general public, and cost $22 per mask. Masks now ship within one to three days.
Womenswear clothing brand Johnny Was, known for its vintage-inspired styles, is repurposing fabric to sell non-medical grade, pleated masks with an interior pocket for a filter. A pack of five masks in floral patterns costs $25. They ship in two to three weeks from the order date.
Fashion brand Kenny Flowers, known for its tropical print bathing suits and shirts, is making non-medical "lifestyle masks" out of unused fabric scraps. They come in whimsical patterns and are machine washable. A two-pack of masks retails for $16, and a three pack sells for $24. They ship within two weeks.
Los Angeles Apparel
Clothing maker Los Angeles Apparel is selling a pack of three cotton face masks for $30 on its website. They are in stock and ready to ship immediately.
Ministry of Supply
MIT-founded apparel brand Ministry of Supply is selling a 3D-printed knit mask, developed alongside medical professionals. The masks are washable and contain a pocket for a filter. Each mask comes with 10 filters and costs $50. Masks ship in three weeks.
Rag & Bone
Popular apparel brand Rag & Bone is selling its own non-medical "stealth mask" made in the Garment District of New York and Los Angeles to serve its loyal customers and also keep its business healthy. One mask costs $30, or buy multiple and save $5 per mask. Masks are available for pre-order and are expected to ship by mid June.
A variety of bandanas and balaclavas are immediately available through outdoor retailer REI's website.
Los Angeles-based womenswear company Sanctuary is selling a five-pack of fashion masks in an assortment of prints that will ship April 19. The masks are available for pre-order through the company's website for $28.
Brooklyn-based upholstery company Stitchroom is making masks for children and adults in a variety of sizes. Adult fabric masks cost $27 and ship in one to two weeks.