As we enter our third year around the sun in the middle of a worldwide pandemic, it’s safe to say that the best face masks aren’t going anywhere. If anything, they are becoming more ingrained in our daily lives than we ever thought possible. We thought we were in the clear for a little bit there, but with yet another variant making its way across the globe, it seems that isn’t the case even in the slightest.
As we continue trudging through this pandemic, we’re learning that some of the best masks to consider are both N95 and KN95 masks. Though the current mask information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is from a majority Omicron-free America back in October of 2021 (where we were still super into cloth masks), ABC News is informing people that given the current surge, the CDC plans on updating their mask information. What do we think they’re going to say to us? KN95s and N95s for the win, folks.
And that doesn’t stop at children, either — KN95 masks for kids are some of the safest options for your kiddos to wear right now. Sadly, N95 masks for kids don’t exist yet, so everything you’re seeing for children online is considered marketing at best, or at worst, a counterfeit N95 mask since none of them are NIOSH-approved. That’s why of the two, only KN95 face masks for kids are currently available.
Are KN95 Masks Safe for Kids?
In short, yes, KN95 masks are top-notch options for children to use right now. Generally speaking, from what we’ve seen from face masks so far, masks that are safe for adults are safe for children. But, what’s the difference between N95 and KN95 masks? Is that still safe if you’re wearing an N95 and your child can only wear a KN95?
We hear a lot of back and forth between N95 and KN95, most saying N95 masks are better, but they are, in fact, somewhat similar. Both are made with multiple layers of synthetic material to filter out and capture 95 percent of particles, hence the “95” in the name.
In an article comparing KN95 and N95 face masks, we were able to get information on the difference from Sean Kelly, founder of New Jersey-based PPE of America, where he mentions, “In general, N95 is the U.S. standard, and the KN95 is the China standard.” Given the circumstances, N95 masks are approved for healthcare use in the United States, even though KN95 masks have many of the same protective properties.
What Are the Best KN95 Masks for Kids?
Although it might seem easier to hand your kid one of your KN95 or N95 masks and call it a day, the CDC explicitly says, “Fit snugly against the sides of your face and don’t have gaps.” No matter how hard you try, if your child isn’t a teenager, they’re most definitely going to struggle with getting their face mask to fit correctly. Purchasing a KN95 mask for kids is a better choice because it is designed to fit smaller faces comfortably, so they won’t need to reconfigure it all day.
Folks that work with children agree, too. When chatting with New Jersey paraprofessional Gabriella Auriemma of Millburn Co-op and Nursery School and Kinderenrichment, we were told, “Fitted masks with metal nose clasps are the way to go with my students. Patterns, colors and characters are essential for getting kids excited to mask up. But, the most important aspect of getting children to wear masks is by making sure it’s the right fit for their face. If it’s too big, they’ll simply throw it out. Trust me — we had a kid throw his in the toilet last week.”
All in all, keep your adult-sized KN95 and N95 masks to yourself and check out all of the best KN95 masks for kids to consider below.
1. WellBefore KN95 Kids Masks
WellBefore is a brand we’ve become incredibly trusting with throughout the pandemic for its affordable, durable and comfortable line of face masks. Like KN95 face masks for adults, these are designed to keep unwanted airborne particles and droplets out of your child’s mouth and nose. The mask contains five layers of non-woven fabric for extra protection while maximizing breathability. However, we should note that there will only be four layers if you purchase extra small. Sizes are available depending on your child’s size, and all masks are complete with adjustable straps. Colors are available, from green to blue to red and more. All come individually wrapped and in boxes containing a minimum of 10 masks total.
2. Blue Bear Protection Kids KN95 Mask
Like WellBefore, Blue Bear Protection is another exceptionally trustworthy brand to consider when picking up the best KN95 masks for your kids. These masks offer up 95%+ efficiency of filtration with four layers through breathable, non-woven fabrics. Each mask is made with super soft ear bands so your child won’t feel uncomfortable through their days at school or when on errands with you. The mask is only adjustable at the nose bridge hidden at the very top. Currently, Blue Bear only offers its masks in black.
3. MISSAA Tie-Dye Kids KN95 Face Masks
Time to add a little bit of color. It should come without surprise that kids love colors, so these rainbow tye-dyed face masks from MISSAA on Amazon are certainly the way to go. These KN95 masks use five layers of protection to keep your kids safe with skin-friendly, breathable materials. They arrive in a pack of 30 and are recommended for children aged four to 12. With this many fun colors, these masks are more than worth it to get your kid back into face masks.
4. LEVENIS Kids KN95 Face Masks
These individually-wrapped face masks from LEVENIS arrived in many fun colors, including pink and yellow or classic black. They’re built with five-layer construction and an ergonomic shape to fit your little one’s face for ultimate comfort properly. These are ideal wherevere your child needs to wear a face mask and are built to stay on throughout all of their adventures.
5. MISSAA Kids Airplane KN95 Face Masks
MISSAA is getting the job done with a collection of fun KN95 masks young children are bound to love. First, it gave us the exciting tie-dye patterns above and now, we’re here to show you these adorable KN95 masks made with different methods of air travel plastered all over. These are great for any kid you consider truck, car, train and plane obsessed.
6. Bona Fide Masks Children’s Sized Powecom KN95-SM Respirator Mask
Made using 46% non-woven polypropylene, 28% melt-blown fabric and 26% ES hot air cotton, these KN95 masks keep your kiddo safer from COVID-19. Each uses a multilayer filtration that promotes breathability and both fits and feels comfortable on your face. These masks are manufactured by Guangzhou Powecom Labor Insurance Supplies Co., LTD. and distributes solely through Bona Fide Masks in the United States and Canada. Even an anti-fake sticker comes with the masks so buyers can verify that they’re legitimate.