The Organization of Consumers and Users (OCU) has been paying special attention to the mask market in recent months. Not for nothing is it a essential resource that fulfills a double objective: to avoid both the contagion and the transmission of SARS-CoV-2, which causes COVID-19.
Spain, unlike other neighboring countries, has specific regulations that regulates the requirements that hygienic masks must meet, which in the case of disposable masks must comply with the provisions of the UNE 0064 standard, and ensure a filtration of 95% and a breathability of less than 60 Pa/cm2.
Now, a new Order of the Ministry of Consumption toughen requirements for the commercialization of hygienic masks, obliging them to indicate on the label their filtration and breathability percentages measured in an accredited laboratory.
Main types of masks on the market
Disposable hygienic masks. They are designed for the general population with a filtration level> 95%, equivalent to surgical procedures. In most cases, these products are around or exceed 98% filtration, which is required for type II surgical masks.
Disposable type I or type II surgical masks. Its use is indicated for infected and healthcare people, although it is also widespread among the general population.
Reusable hygienic masks, textile or not. With a filtration level> 90%, they allow several washes without compromising their efficiency, generate less waste and have the advantage of adapting them to our tastes.
Protective filtering masks FFP2, or FFP3. They are part of the so-called PPE (Personal Protective Equipment). Its use is recommended by caregivers and living with infected people, health workers who work in risky environments and some especially vulnerable users.
The key: filtration and breathability
These two aspects, filtration efficiency and breathability, the main criteria used by the OCU to determine which are the best masks that combine the adequate protection, the ability to stop the transmission of viruses and also prevent the feeling of suffocation. And the main conclusion is that we are well protected since most of the masks filter by far, exceeding 98%.
What are the best disposable masks?
Disposable adult masks
Non-reusable hygienic masks Deliplus (Mercadona). It is a 3-layer hygienic mask that meets the requirements of the UNE 0064 standard.For its good price (0.15 per unit) and unbeatable results (99% filtration efficiency), it is the Best of the Analysis and one of the Purchases Teachers
Bergner (Carrefour) Non-reusable hygienic face mask KI 8501-1. It is a 3-layer hygienic mask that meets the requirements of the UNE 0064 standard. The unit comes out at the same price as Mercadona’s, although its filtering efficiency is slightly lower (98%). It is also a Master Purchase for the OCU.
IntelMask (Aldi) Disposable Surgical Mask. This is a type I surgical mask, a medical device with standard EN 14683. Recommended in case of being infected or suspected. Like the rest, the price of the ten-pack is 1.45 and it is also Master Buy for the OCU.
Jiangsu Excellence (Lidl) Disposable Mask. This is a type IIR surgical mask, a medical device with standard EN 14683. Highly recommended in case of being infected or suspected. It maintains the same price as Aldi and is a Master Purchase.
Deliplus children’s mask (Mercadona). It is a 3-layer hygienic mask that meets the requirements of the UNE 0064-2 standard for children. Its filtration efficiency is very good reaching 99%, and also its breathability. It is the Best of those analyzed in this category, and a Master Purchase.
Melissa Galbraith is the World News reporter for Globe Live Media. She covers all the major events happening around the World. From Europe to Americas, from Asia to Antarctica, Melissa covers it all. Never miss another Major World Event by bookmarking her author page right here.