Germany: beards should shave to properly wear the FFP2 mask

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Christoph Asbach, President of the German Aerosol Research Society, states that the vision of 100% protection of FFP2 masks against coronavirus infection – not true. “Even if the masks are perfectly worn without creating gaps, they do not provide 100% protection,” – Asbach emphasized in an interview with dpa.

According to tech data, masks filter out 94 percent of particles that can carry the virus. However, 6 percent can still penetrate the mask. “Residents of the country should not forget that there is no protection tool that reduces the risk of infection to zero.” It is important to adhere to other measures, such as the minimum distance, limitation of contacts and others.

The FFP2 mask only delivers the promised 94 percent protection if it fits perfectly around the entire perimeter. Depending on the shape of the face, not all models fit perfectly. This means that air – and therefore possibly viruses – enter the crevices, Asbah explains. “If a mask does not fit properly, it is no more effective than a regular mask.”

Especially noteworthy are the men who wear beards. It is understood that facial hair does not contribute to a snug fit of the mask. There are very expensive alternatives on the market with HEPA filters and air valves. But they are not meant for everyday use. “Basically, the only way out for men with facial hair is to shave.”

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