MEET THE NEW FACE MASK

Details behind our design process

The evidence is clear — wearing a mask can #StopTheSpread.

Today, we’re launching a new Face Mask. It’s designed to be more comfortable, safe, and usable than a cloth or surgical mask — something that works for you.

We focused on 3 key parts:

  1. Breathable fabric for comfort.
  2. Disposable filters for safety.
  3. Reusable, minimal design for usability.

The result is a reusable face mask made with breathable mesh, disposable filters that filter up to 95% of bacteria particles, and a minimal design that everyone can feel comfortable wearing.

The Face Mask (Medium / Black)

THE DESIGN CHALLENGE

To make a better mask, we started with the problems that current non-medical masks face:

  • Cloth masks can get stuffy with extended use (especially in the summer).
  • A wet mask becomes less effective at filtering bacteria.
  • Surgical masks can only be used once causing environmental issues.
  • Many people of color don’t feel safe wearing a cloth mask.

Coming up with ideas based on an N95 ventilator.

We started with testing every single mask pattern that we could find. Some worked better than others. The final design looks more like an N95 respirator than a surgical mask. A tight fit that only covers up a part of your face.

The reusable part of the mask is made with a breathable mesh that has a net-like appearance. The small holes allow air to pass through it and combined with the filter for safety, provide protection for extended periods.

The reusable mask's mesh material that makes it easy to breathe.

For the filter, we started with cutting up a surgical mask to find out what is inside. It turns out that a surgical mask is made up of 3 layers of non-woven material: an outer layer trapping larger particles, a middle filter layer (melt-blown polypropylene), and an inner layer that sits against your face.

Of those 3 layers, the most important piece is the filter made of non-woven melt-blown polypropylene — it’s responsible for filtering out small particles up to 0.3 microns with 95% efficiency.

The 3 layers inside of a surgical mask.

Because of mask shortages, we needed to quickly prototype designs and manufacture masks quickly and at scale.

To solve for speed, we found a way to make masks here in San Francisco. Over the past year, we’ve offered a free tailoring service so that customers could shorten their bag straps. Our seamstress had a small shop in the city and would help us with this on a need-by-need basis.

After the Coronavirus lockdown she was forced to close her shop without financial support, like many across the country. We were able to work with her to reopen her facility and test designs and materials so that we can now make thousands of masks a week.

Our production facility here in San Francisco.

Each Face Mask ($35) comes with 5 disposable filters (more coming soon) and for each mask purchased we'll give one to an organization in need.

Essential workers can also redeem a discount for 50% off the mask and a free subscription to our filters (coming soon).

Masks are going to evolve a lot over the coming months as we start to get used to wearing them. We need better masks now and it starts with making them more comfortable, safe, and usable.

Yours,
- Justin

Founder, CEO

MEET THE NEW FACE MASK

Details behind our design process

The evidence is clear — wearing a mask can #StopTheSpread.

Today, we’re launching a new Face Mask. It’s designed to be more comfortable, safe, and usable than a cloth or surgical mask — something that works for you.

We focused on 3 key parts:

  1. Breathable fabric for comfort.
  2. Disposable filters for safety.
  3. Reusable, minimal design for usability.

The result is a reusable face mask made with breathable mesh, disposable filters that filter up to 95% of bacteria particles, and a minimal design that everyone can feel comfortable wearing.

The Face Mask (Medium / Black)

THE DESIGN CHALLENGE

To make a better mask, we started with the problems that current non-medical masks face:

  • Cloth masks can get stuffy with extended use (especially in the summer).
  • A wet mask becomes less effective at filtering bacteria.
  • Surgical masks can only be used once causing environmental issues.
  • Many people of color don’t feel safe wearing a cloth mask.

Coming up with ideas based on an N95 ventilator.

We started with testing every single mask pattern that we could find. Some worked better than others. The final design looks more like an N95 respirator than a surgical mask. A tight fit that only covers up a part of your face.

The reusable part of the mask is made with a breathable mesh that has a net-like appearance. The small holes allow air to pass through it and combined with the filter for safety, provide protection for extended periods.

The reusable mask's mesh material that makes it easy to breathe.

For the filter, we started with cutting up a surgical mask to find out what is inside. It turns out that a surgical mask is made up of 3 layers of non-woven material: an outer layer trapping larger particles, a middle filter layer (melt-blown polypropylene), and an inner layer that sits against your face.

Of those 3 layers, the most important piece is the filter made of non-woven melt-blown polypropylene — it’s responsible for filtering out small particles up to 0.3 microns with 95% efficiency.

The 3 layers inside of a surgical mask.

Because of mask shortages, we needed to quickly prototype designs and manufacture masks quickly and at scale.

To solve for speed, we found a way to make masks here in San Francisco. Over the past year, we’ve offered a free tailoring service so that customers could shorten their bag straps. Our seamstress had a small shop in the city and would help us with this on a need-by-need basis.

After the Coronavirus lockdown she was forced to close her shop without financial support, like many across the country. We were able to work with her to reopen her facility and test designs and materials so that we can now make thousands of masks a week.

The 3 layers inside of a surgical mask.

Each Face Mask ($35) comes with 5 disposable filters (more coming soon) and for each mask purchased we'll give one to an organization in need.

Essential workers can also redeem a discount for 50% off the mask and a free subscription to our filters (coming soon).

Masks are going to evolve a lot over the coming months as we start to get used to wearing them. We need better masks now and it starts with making them more comfortable, safe, and usable.

Yours,
- Justin

Founder, CEO