Stay safe and care for your cloth mask

Arizonans have stepped up to stay safe and keep one another safe. According to a report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Arizona’s prevention measures over the summer months helped slow the spread of COVID-19. Measures including mask-wearing, showed a 75 percent decrease in cases following sustained prevention efforts across the state.

Not only is it important to continue to wear a mask when you are out and about, it’s also important to keep cloth masks clean.

Just like any other wearable item, your cloth face mask will need to be washed on a regular basis. Here are two ways to do that:

In the washing machine. Just toss your mask in with the rest of your clothes when you run a load of laundry. Regular detergent is fine to use. If you know the type of cloth the mask is made from, use the warmest water setting that's appropriate for that material.When drying the mask, use the highest temperature setting.

By hand. First, prepare a diluted bleach solution (such as 1/3 cup of disinfecting bleach to a gallon of room-temperature water). Make sure the bleach contains 5.25% to 8.25%sodium hypochlorite. Soak the mask in the bleach solution for five minutes. Next, pour the bleach solution down the drain, and rinse the mask with water.

You can toss the cleaned mask in the dryer or you can air dry it, ideally in direct sunlight. Be mindful that bleach can damage cloth fabric over time. 

Whichever cleaning method you use, make sure the mask is completely dry before you put it on. Click here for more tips on wearing your face mask.

Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention