White House advisor, Dr. Anthony Fauci, said today that wearing two masks, or using an N95 mask, is likely more effective in preventing the spread of the COVID-19 virus.
The double-mask recommendation came during an interview with Savannah Guthrie on NBC News TODAY.
“So if you have a physical covering with one layer, you put another layer on, it just makes common sense that it likely would be more effective,” Fauci told TODAY. “That’s the reason why you see people either double masking or doing a version of an N95.”
To date, the Centers for Disease Control has not recommended double-masking, however the practice drew attention when people at president Joe Biden’s inauguration were seen wearing two masks. Poet Amanda Gorman and Pete Buttigieg, the nominee to head the Transportation Department, both wore surgical masks underneath cloth masks. (RELATED: Dr. Anthony Fauci Predicts When The Face Masks Might Come Off)
Researchers have stated that wearing a surgical mask underneath a cloth mask provides maximal protection, because the surgical mask acts as a filter and the cloth adds an additional layer and helps with fit, according to a commentary in CellPress. In places where it’s difficult to maintain social distance, such as on an airplane or at the store, two masks would provide additional protection. The next best option would be a three-layer mask that contains an inner filter.