32 Degrees Face Cover

Gearflogger reviews the 32 Degrees face coverFace masks had a rocky start at the beginning of the COVID pandemic, but current guidance is that they should be mandatory when social distancing is not an option. Pro-mask people frequently treat mask-wearing as settled science, which it most definitely is not, while anti-mask people go so far as to shoot at people. The issue is more complicated than either extreme gives it credit for; read FiveThirtyEight's overview if you really want to be informed.

Controversy aside, there is enough evidence that masks can limit transmission of the virus, and possibly reception of it, enough to be useful, especially when they are really not that much of an inconvenience. CDC provides instructions on how to make your own sew and no-sew variations, or you buy them in most large retail locations these days. You probably won't get the surgical grade version, but that's OK because health care workers really need those first anyway.

Browsing Costco recently we came across a reasonably-priced face cover from 32 Degrees. We've liked their shirts and other products in the past, so we bought a four-pack of three black and one gray model and tried them out. If you look at the reviews on Costco.com you'll see people split on these, and here's why: the masks are on the small side, great for smaller faces and kids, but no so much for those with bigger mugs. The material is a 3-ply and is fairly dense, feeling like an very thin neoprene, and when you breathe in it kind of sucks in to your face which some people find disconcerting and uncomfortable.

We actually liked them for our smaller faces, especially when we discovered that you can wet them down and wear them on a hot day and they feel great for that. They're our go-to for quick in-and-out trips into stores, but that said if we had to go into a setting where we would be talking much we would grab something else, because these tend to slip down if you're jawboning for long. Overall, they're an inexpensive option for those with smaller faces who don't mind a close fit and won't be using them in meetings where they're expected to speak a lot.

$24.99 for an 8 pack at Costco 



Note to readers: As of November 1, 2022, Gearflogger no longer participates in affiliate programs or accepts commissions on links to products. We’ll find some other way to make money. Maybe get a real job. Maybe not.

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