March 2022 marked the two-year anniversary of the COVID-19 shutdown here in the United States, but it felt more like the 10th anniversary to us. The effectiveness of vaccines and boosters at preventing severe illness and death gives many of us reasons to feel like we can go back to some sense of normalcy.
Additionally, now that the federal mask mandate is officially lifted for airplanes, trains and public transportation, the risk of asymptomatic transmission will inevitably go up. From young children and the elderly to those with compromised immune systems, wearing a mask is still a good way to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus or any other airborne disease. And with the Omicron and BA.2 variants still lurking, it’s still important to know where to find N95 face masks online.
Remember: masks are as much about protecting other people from the asymptomatic spread of the virus as they are for self-protection.
Fortunately, we’re here to connect you with the best places to buy N95 masks online, including the best face masks for the Omicron variant, which is highly contagious. While you can find N95 masks for sale on Amazon and other big-box retailers, we usually recommend buying N95 masks (and KN95 masks) from PPE companies such as Blue Bear Protection and WellBefore. The New York Times and other outlets have documented that counterfeit masks are a growing problem.
Thanks to Herculean efforts to increase production over the past two years, it’s now relatively easy to find deals on N95 masks online.
This list is here to help you and your family stay safe. With it, you’ll find the best places to purchase N95 masks for adults and can even find KN95 face masks sized for children.
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N95 respirators are the most critical type of PPE for protecting yourself and others close to you from the coronavirus. The best N95 masks were in short supply across the country early in the pandemic, but supplies have since rebounded and are now widely available to the general public. (Yes, there is a difference between KN95 masks and N95 masks, which you can read in our separate piece.) In this article, we’re tackling all things N95 and KN95 and where to buy N95 face masks online.
A Note About Counterfeit Masks: Use Caution When Buying N95 Masks Online
As the demand for N95 masks outside healthcare settings increased, the market for fake or counterfeit N95s has become larger and more sophisticated. Therefore, deciphering which masks are authentic and which are fake is more complicated. We spoke to experts about identifying fake face masks, and we highly recommend learning to spot common signs of counterfeit N95 masks.
It’s crucial to make sure the mask you’re purchasing has NIOSH-approved written on the mask as well as the package it comes in. This means the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health has approved it for use and ensured it protects in the way it promises to. There should also be an approval number written on the mask that’s easy to read.
We’ve carefully selected each mask featured below, ensuring that they’re all NIOSH-approved. If you want to buy N95 masks online for COVID-19 prevention, we’re confident in all options below. We wanted to offer a selection in case one goes out of stock, and we’ll try to keep this list updated as often as possible, as items like this tend to sell out quickly amidst the pandemic. If you aren’t sure about a particular brand or supplier when purchasing PPE, check the CDC website for the official list of approved N95 face masks.
If you’re shopping for KN95 masks or N95 masks on Amazon, we recommend sticking with brands such as Kimberly Clark, 3M or HUHETA, the latter of which is owned by Amazon. Unfortunately, some of the KN95 face masks sold on Amazon have been the subject of complaints due to sub-standard quality.
1. WellBefore Individually Wrapped KN95 Face Masks
When SPY editors need to restock our own supplies of personal protective equipment, we head to sites like WellBefore and Blue Bear Protection. If you need masks ASAP, then we recommend heading to WellBefore, which promises to ship masks within at least 48 hours. WellBefore also makes it easy to choose the exact quantity and features you’re looking for, and the company also has options for bulk purchases if you’re buying face masks for your employees.
These KN95 masks come individually wrapped to minimize contamination, and unlike most of the N95 and KN95 masks in stock right now, you can choose between standard ear loops, adjustable ear straps, or behind-the-head straps. You can also order these masks in large quantities for just $1.49/each, one of the lowest prices on KN95 masks we’ve been able to find off Amazon. If you prefer KN95 masks with adjustable ear loops, WellBefore has options starting at just $1.99/mask.
2. WellBefore 3D Style KN95 Mask
WellBefore designs this 3D-style KN95 mask to give you protection and a comfortable fit, because if a mask is comfortable and fits properly, you’re more likely to wear it. They’ve taken the standard KN95 mask and created a more comfortable and breathable version that fits your face’s unique contours. It comes with an adjustable noseband for securing a tighter fit and tighter ear loops so you can tighten it as you see fit. Note: This mask follows the KF94 standard of South Korea, which is their equivalent to the Chinese KN95.
3. WellBefore N99 NIOSH Face Mask
This N99 face mask is available via WellBefore, one of our favorite places to buy N95 masks and other PPE. Shaz Amin, the founder of WellBefore, is a trusted resource for the site when it comes to PPE and has advised us on stories like face masks for wildfire smoke and how to spot counterfeit N95 masks as well. This N99 mask is NIOSH approved for filtering out 99% of airborne particles and has four layers of premium protection.
4. N95 Medical Supplies NIOSH Harley Soft Shell Masks
N95 Medical Supplies is a great, trustworthy source for N95 masks that diligently verifies the authenticity of every mask they sell on the site. These NIOSH-approved Harley L-188 N95 masks filter out 95% of airborne particles and come in boxes of 20 masks, so you’ll have plenty in stock for you and your family. It comes with an adjustable nosepiece for a customized, tight fit. It has a lightweight construction for comfort and increased wear time, and the two-strap design gives you a secure seal. The straps are also completely latex-free, making the mask more allergen-friendly.
5. Makrite 9500-N95 Face Masks from Blue Bear Protection
Blue Bear Protection is one of the many companies created during the COVID-19 pandemic to help connect consumers with PPE such as face masks, hand sanitizer and thermometers, which were often in short supply. Today, it’s another one of our favorite places to buy N95 masks online, and the company offers multiple styles of N95 masks, including these Makrite N95 masks. Like all of the best genuine N95 masks, these masks are approved by both the FDA and the NIOSH for use as personal protective equipment. Each box contains 20 Makrite N95 masks with dual ear straps and a secure cup shape covering the mouth and nose.
6. Blue Bear Protection KN95 Masks
KN95 masks don’t go through as strict a testing process as genuine N95 masks, but they still offer serious protection against airborne diseases like COVID-19 and are used by many frontline workers. This 100-pack of KN95 masks comes in both black and white and offers a great value. If you want to stock up on masks for your household, this is a convenient option. In addition, if you’re a business owner searching for the best places to buy N95 masks for employees, Blue Bear Protection is an excellent brand to know. Blue Bear Protection offers a wide variety of PPE and KN95 face masks.
7. HUHETA KN95 Face Masks
There have been reports that some popular KN95 face masks for sale on Amazon are counterfeit. We recommend using common sense and caution when buying from unfamiliar brands on sites such as Amazon, which hosts many third-party sellers. We know that you probably aren’t familiar with the HUHETA brand; however, it’s one of Amazon’s house brands, so we think you can trust these highly rated KN95 face masks with a 5-layer design, affordable prices and adjustable nose bridges.
8. Kimberly Clark N95 Pouch-Style Respirators
Kimberly-Clark is one of the leading manufacturers of paper products here in the United States. The company makes the N95 face masks pictured below, which are currently for sale and in stock via Amazon Prime. In addition, these masks are sold directly via Amazon itself rather than through a third-party Amazon seller. The pouch-style respirators don’t sit as close to your skin as other masks, which can be a benefit if you’re worried about maskne. An adjustable nosepiece ensures a proper fit and seal.
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9. Project N95 BYD Flat Fold N95 Respirators
These flat fold N95 respirators are designed for a close facial fit, with an adjustable nose clip and double straps. The mask provides 95% filtration efficiency against both solid and liquid aerosols free of oil. These masks also come individually wrapped inside the box for easy, sanitary distribution and are foldable, so they’re easy to put in your purse or backpack while traveling or commuting.
10. FGCCJP KN95 Face Mask
Unfortunately, unscrupulous individuals are still trying to take advantage of COVID-19 by selling counterfeit KN95 masks. Amazon has a resource page about KN95 face masks we recommend checking out. To be safe, you can also purchase masks from brands owned and operated by Amazon itself, such as FGCCJP, which makes these affordable KN95 respirators.
11. Kids KN95 Masks by Blue Bear Protection
The CDC advises that children ages 3 years and older wear face masks in public. If you find the idea of a three-year-old child properly wearing a mask for hours at a time completely ridiculous, you’re in very good company. However, various schools and airlines do require children to wear masks in certain situations, so it’s important to have an adequate supply of face masks for kids. Little Lives PPE is a trusted retailer for kid’s KN95 face masks, and this LL95 face mask is equivalent for kids ages 2-12 years old. The masks also come in many fun, bright colors kids will love.
12. ALG Hard Cup Shell N95 Mask — 25 Pack
ALG is the same mask and company from option No. 5 but in a cup shell design that lifts the mask off the face for more breathing room and has a nose clip for sealing off a secure fit. This pack also contains 25 masks instead of 20 and has 99.7% filter efficiency, according to third-party laboratory testing. The straps are latex-free and designed for a close fit and seal.
13. Respokare N95 Respirator Masks
This mask is a patented design by Innonix, a PPE company that’s been around for 19 years. This respirator-style mask blocks 95% of 0.3-micron particles in the air and inactivates up to 99.9% of particles within a few minutes of wearing it. The inner layers are designed for comfort, while the outer layers are water-resistant. There’s a filter layer and an antiviral layer — both of which work to combat viruses and pathogens in the air. These masks block 18 common seasonal and pandemic viruses, including coronaviruses, influenza, measles, tuberculosis and common allergens. The mask is pricey, at $50 for a 5-pack, but the level of protection is worth it.
14. 3M N95 Face Masks 10-Pack
3M is one of the verified sellers of PPE, and N95 masks on the CDC website, and 3M N95 masks have been hard to find online since the earliest days of the pandemic. After supply chains adapted, it became much easier to buy 3M N95 face masks online, and this affordable 20 pack is available via Amazon. The masks are cup-shaped and have a head and neckband for a secure fit. They also have the NIOSH-approved number on every mask. They’re made for use during woodworking, including sanding, sawing and other dusty jobs, but they work just as well at filtering out viral pathogens in the air.
15. Cup Style N95 Respirator Mask — 40 Pack
This N95 mask design is different from the one above in its shape. It cups the face rather than resting on top of it, but both designs are NIOSH-approved with the proper fitting. This mask can filter out 95% of non-oily particles in the air down to 0.3-micron levels and has head and neck loops attached for keeping it secure. The design is also ideal for storage since the cup masks easily stack on top of each other. If you want to stock up and buy N95 masks online, this mask pack is a great albeit expensive option.
16. PHG N95 Particulate Respirator Masks — 50-Pack
This N95 mask from PHG has a softly molded shell design with a metal nosepiece, like the one above, for creating a tight seal on the face. The nose also has foam on it, and the cloth head straps help keep the mask in place during use. This mask is NIOSH-approved for filtering out 95% of particles in the air. If you’re looking specifically for N95 face masks made in the USA, this is the best option for you.
*This piece was last updated on April 14, 2022 at 12:00 p.m ET.
Frequently Asked Questions About N95 Masks
N95 respirators are face masks designed to filter out 95% of tiny (0.3 microns) airborne particles, including the respiratory droplets that can cause COVID-19. The masks are tight-fitting and usually have straps that go over the head rather than ear loops like regular face masks.
N95 masks are made of thick material that prevents leakage on all sides when fitted correctly, so your breath is sealed from others, and your air is filtered as you breathe in. They're designed to form a tight seal around the face that other masks don't provide. N95 masks must be NIOSH-approved to provide this protection, so it's important to ensure yours is genuine and not counterfeit (more on this below).
Yes, some N95 masks have exhalation valves that make breathing easier, less hot inside and decrease moisture build-up. N95 masks with the valve are just as protective for the user as ones without a valve. However, the valve doesn't filter your breath as you breathe out the way other masks do — so these masks aren't effective at preventing COVID-19 spread from the user. For this reason, we recommend purchasing N95 masks without a valve. If you have no other choice, you should wear another cloth or surgical mask over the N95 for added protection.
Yes, the CDC recommends wearing KN95 masks to protect yourself from COVID-19 and the Delta Variant. Both N95 masks and KN95 masks filter out 95% of particles 0.3 microns in size. However, N95 masks are NIOSH certified, whereas KN95 masks are certified to Chinese standards. For this reason, only N95 masks are used in medical settings here in the United States, and some consumers prefer them for this reason. However, the CDC states that both types of masks protect from COVID-19.
Some N95 masks and KN95 masks are for sale on Amazon, but we recommend buying them only if they are sold directly by Amazon and not a third-party Amazon store. On the product page, search for the words: "Ships from Amazon.com" and "Sold by Amazon.com" to ensure the products are sold via Amazon directly.
As of April 20, 2022, our e-commerce editors were able to find a variety of N95 masks for sale online. KN95 masks are typically easier to find, but we recommend either type of mask if you're worried about COVID-19, new varients, or wildfire smoke. You can find N95 masks in stock at PPE companies such as WellBefore, Blue Bear Protection and DMB Supply. In addition, you can find Kimberly-Clark N95 Masks for sale via Amazon Prime.