Masking is a critical public health tool for preventing spread of COVID-19, and it is important to remember that any mask is better than no mask.
To protect yourself and others from COVID-19, CDC continues to recommend that you wear the most protective mask you can that fits well and that you will wear consistently.
Masks and respirators are effective at reducing transmission of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, when worn consistently and correctly.
Some masks and respirators offer higher levels of protection than others, and some may be harder to tolerate or wear consistently than others. It is most important to wear a well-fitted mask or respirator correctly that is comfortable for you and that provides good protection.
While all masks and respirators provide some level of protection, properly fitted respirators provide the highest level of protection. Wearing a highly protective mask or respirator may be most important for certain higher risk situations, or by some people at increased risk of severe disease.
CDC’s mask recommendations provide information that people can use to improve how well their masks protect them.
What You Need to Know:
There are two types – respirators and masks.
Some respirators and masks are more protective and some are harder to wear consistently.
Well-fitted respirators provide the best protection.
Wear the highest quality respirator or mask that has the correct fit, protection, and comfort for you.
High quality respirators are important if you are older, immunocompromised, not up-to-date on your COVID-19 vaccinations, or in higher risk situations.
If you are unvaccinated, wear a mask in all public indoor settings.
If you are up-to-date on your COVID-19 vaccinations, continue to wear a mask in public indoor settings where there is substantial or high community transmission.