How to handle KN95 respirators correctly

Corresponding to the PPE strategy by the CDC, decontamination recommendations in regards to handling a face mask are as follows:

  • Stay clear of touching the inner side of the mask.
  • Prior to and after touching or adjusting the mask, you must clean your hands with soapy water or an alcohol-based disinfectant with a minimum of 60% alcohol.
  • Constantly verify that the KN95 protective mask parts like nose bridge, bands, as well as nose foam pad did not degrade (which would compromise the mask performance, quality of the fit, as well as the seal).
  • Always visually examine the breathing mask to see whether its condition or function have been compromised.
  • When touching and adjusting the mask, ensure to utilize a pair of tidy (don’t need to be sterile) gloves.
  • Constantly make sure to dispose of a used breathing mask appropriately and also never leave it around, where other people can touch it or use it.

After I’m vaccinated, do I still have to put on a KN95 mask?

TL;DR: Yes, you still have to wear a mask (N95 NIOSH, KN95, 3-ply etc.), here is the explanation:


While the Pfizer/Biontech and the Moderna vaccines are 95 %, respectively 94.1 % effective, this statistic just expresses the ability to stop symptomatic COVID-19. What this indicates is that while a totally vaccinated individual is safe from getting ill with COVID-19, he or she can still be a carrier and transmit the virus asymptomatically – similar to how individuals without symptoms had the ability to infect others before there were vaccinations available.

Mucosal infection and spread

This additionally complies with the function of these vaccines. To stimulate an effective immune response, the injection is placed deep into the upper arm’s muscle tissue. This stimulates the immune system to create antibodies that correctly recognize special parts of the virus and attack it. But, although antibodies flow through the blood, the coronavirus can still spread fast in the nasal passage until sufficient counts of antibodies can destroy it there.
Mucosal vaccines, like nasal spray vaccinations for influenza, are far better than intramuscular shots at avoiding transmission of respiratory system infections. Until such a mucosal vaccination is readily available for COVID-19, you can quickly spread the infection through your nose while immunized, even if the virus won’t make you sick anymore.

Protection, distance, hygiene

That is why it is extremely important that up until the vaccination has been provided to a sizeable amount of people, that all of us remain to adhere to public health instructions to secure the health of those around us. This consists of using a mask or respirator, e.g. a KN95 respirator, keeping the minimum distance (> 6 feet) from people, avoiding gatherings of people, washing hands frequently, complying with CDC and adhering to quarantine guidance (e.g. after direct exposure to somebody with COVID-19, re-entering the States from abroad, etc.).

If you are looking for KN95 respirators

If you are struggling to find PPE for yourself or your family, please head to our store, as we have KN95 respirators and 3-ply protective face masks for your safety and the people around you.

What’s the difference between KN95 and N95?

A question we face very often is: “What is the difference between a KN95 respirator and a N95 respirator? Are they the same?”

Are KN95 and N95 masks the same?

No, they aren’t the same, but they are indeed very similar. So similar, that e.g. the well-known mask-producer 3M states in its Technical Bulletin, that

it is reasonable to consider China KN95, AS/NZ P2, Korea 1st Class, and Japan DS2 FFRs as “similar” to US NIOSH N95 and European FFP2 respirators, for filtering non-oil-based particles such as those resulting from wildfires, PM 2.5 air pollution, volcanic eruptions, or bioaerosols (e.g. viruses)

Of course, one should consult one’s local guidelines and regulations before settling down for a respirator type.

If one is only interested in particle filtration, both types are the same, as they both filter ≥95% of particles of 0.3 microns.

What is the difference then?

So, where do KN95 masks and N95 masks actually differ, if they are so similar? Well, reading the specifications of both types, both have their respective pro’s and con’s. E.g. KN95 shall be fitment-tested on a real human face, also measuring its filtering performance, N95 in the meantime has ever-so-slightly higher requirements for breathability (in and out). However, we are talking here about a difference of 7 Pa (≤ 343 Pa vs. ≤ 350 Pa) inhalation resistance requirement and 5 Pa (≤245 Pa vs. ≤ 250 Pa) exhalation resistance requirement. So, not really a concern.

So, when you are searching for a N95 (NIOSH-42 CFR84) mask, could you actually take a KN95 (GB2626-2006) mask? – Yes, but please check your regulations beforehand. But in these hard times, many of them should have been updated to broaden supply bandwidth.

Take a look at our masks

If you are looking for a very reasonably priced KN95 respirator, look at our offer. We also offer bulk pricing for hospitals, schools, companies or vendors.