Newsom recommends Californians 'double down' with two face coverings

Virus Outbreak California
Posted at 4:35 PM, Mar 04, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-04 19:40:52-05

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — California Gov. Gavin Newsom and updated guidance are asking residents to "double down" on mask wearing, suggesting that two face coverings should be used in some situations.

The state released new guidance around mask wearing on Thursday, suggesting residents wear masks with at least three layers for the best protection. Newsom also said that California would not be lifting its face-covering mandate, after states like Texas lifted their requirements for wearing masks.

"We are encouraging people to basically double down on mask wearing, particularly in light of all, of what I would argue, is bad information coming from at least four states in this country," Newsom said Thursday. "We will not be walking down their path. We're mindful of your health and our future."

(California's updated guidance can be found online here.)

California's guidance suggests double masking as an "effective way to improve fit and filtration." The state, however, said it's not recommended that anyone layer more than two masks, wear two medical masks, or wear a medical mask on top of a KN95 or an N95. Instead, the state suggested wearing a close-fitting cloth mask on top of a surgical or disposable mask to improve the seal to the face.

The guidance also suggests when certain situations could require more protective mask wearing, including:

  • Indoor spaces with people from outside your household
  • In close quarters with other people where social distancing is not possible (Ex: riding a bus, waiting in line at a crowded location)
  • In any public place for people who are older or with medical conditions that put them at higher risk of severe COVID-19 illness

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The state says cloth masks can work well, as long as they're tight fitting and made of materials that can filter out small particles, including masks with tightly woven layers of two and a third non-woven layer, like a filter insert or synthetic fabric. Cloth masks are also best when gaps around the nose and side of the face are reduced.