Federal officials have urged Americans to keep wearing masks and do what they need to in order to make them fit tighter — and that might include double-masking.

What’s going on?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced new guidelines that include wearing tight-fitting face masks — or even two masks at once — to help stop the spread of the novel coronavirus.

  • The CDC recommends Americans pick masks with a nose wire so they can be adjusted to fit tightly. People should use mask fitters or a brace to seal off their masks, too.
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Two key things

  • The CDC said you shouldn’t combine two disposable masks if you’re going to double up. Neither are designed to fit tightly so it wouldn’t help, according to the CDC.
  • People also should not combine a KN95 mask with any other masks. Only one should be used at a time.

What do experts say?

Dr. Rochelle P. Walensky, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, has asked Americans to wear a “well-fitting mask,” according to The New York Times.

  • “With cases, hospitalizations and deaths still very high, now is not the time to roll back mask requirements,” she said. “The bottom line is this: Masks work, and they work when they have a good fit and are worn correctly.”
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Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, recently told the “Today” show that the recommendation isn’t to wear two masks — it’s to wear one mask.

  • “The recommendation is not that you have to wear it. What the CDC is saying is at minimum, wear a mask.”
  •  “One mask at least, but if you want to really be sure, get a tighter fit with the second mask.”
  • “I have used it occasionally. The fit is better if you put a surgical mask on and put a cloth mask over.”