Study: Layered masks better than shields

Plastic face shields, neck gaiters and masks with valves — three of the creative approaches to face coverings since COVID-19 hit the United States — are not very effective in curbing the spread of coronavirus particles, according to two new studies from Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton.

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September 11, 2020 - 2:39 PM

Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, wearing a Washington Nationals face mask to testify at a hearing of the U.S. House Committee on Energy and Commerce on Capitol Hill on June 23, 2020, in Washington, D.C. Photo by Kevin Dietsc/Pool/Getty Images/TNS

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — They’re more comfortable, but they don’t work too well.

Plastic face shields, neck gaiters and masks with valves — three of the creative approaches to face coverings since COVID-19 hit the United States — are not very effective in curbing the spread of coronavirus particles, according to two new studies from Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton.

FAU engineering researchers tested how well shields and several types of masks worked on mannequins whose simulated coughs and sneezes were mapped to determine their path through the air.

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