It's now official. New Yorker's have been asked to wear a mask whenever they are out in public & the practice of social distancing cannot be maintained. Which let's be honest... if you're going to the grocery store, inside a gas station or to the pharmacy - it's impossible. So, time to wear your mask.
Many people have had a hard time finding masks, and personally, I feel the real masks need to be reserved for our healthcare workers or anyone who is on the front lines of this daily. Yes, that include grocery store clerks too. For the average person who is staying home 95% of the time, we should find an alternative. I am lucky enough that I learned to sew somewhere around 12 & own a sewing machine. If you own a sewing machine, it goes without say that you definitely have some fabric laying around too. I was able to find a couple packages of elastic in my stash & whipped up about 25 masks for my friends & family using this tutorial, which was SUPER easy, even if you're only a novice sewer.
But... not everyone has the skill, equipment or materials, nor do they know someone who does. A few weeks ago, I shared a video on how to make a no sew mask using a bandanna & hair ties. Well, now I'm hearing that bandanna's are hard to find too, since the Governor even said using a Bandanna or Scarf was an acceptable option at this time. Alright... I have found ANOTHER option for you. Got any leggings hanging around?
Somewhere around 2016/2017, I went pretty hard on the LuLaRoe leggings. I probably have an easy 25 pairs in my dresser right now, and I wore them all.the.time. What was I thinking? Yeah, those Wolf leggings are awesome, but did I really go out in public wearing them? YUP. I did. I dressed them up with cute tops & booties & was on my way. Don't get me wrong, LuLaRoe leggings are pretty awesome. The first time I tried them on vs regular leggings I had been wearing, my first thought was "butter". They were so smooth & comfortable. Well, fast forward to 2020 & the only ones in rotation now are my 5 pairs of black ones.
If you have a stack of leggings that are no longer being worn, transform them into a no sew face mask. Seriously... all you need is a pair of scissors! I don't know if other brands work the same, but I'm gonna guess yes. I mean, leggings are leggings, right?
The first thing you're going to do is take 1 pant leg & just snip the bottom hem off. Then, you're going to measure the leg & cut. Now the tutorial I found said to cut the material at 9 inches. However, when I did that, it ended up being WAY too small. I know that this pair of leggings wasn't as stretchy as some of my other pairs, so that could have played into it, but there is no way I was going to stretch it over my ears. Or I just have a BIG MOUTH. I've been told that a time or two, no point in denying it - HA!
I would suggest just taking the leg, wrapping it around your face ear to ear, pulling it some for the stretch factor & then cutting where you think it will work best. For me, that was 13 inches on a not so stretchy pair of leggings.
Next up, you're going to want to round out the sides of your leggings. The sharper your scissors are, the easier this will be.
As you can see, I made some pretty rough cuts here. This mask is for practicality, not a ribbon at the State Fair. I was working quickly to get it done.
You're now going to snip away at the inside part of the mask on both the left & right hand side, kinda rounding them out. The piece in the middle that is left for you really just needs to protect your nose & mouth, so you can snip it in as much as you want, or leave it so your cheeks have double material too. Then fold the sides in & snip yourself some little ear holes. You've also made yourself a little pocket there in the middle. If you want to try some sort of material to add a removable filter, you can simply slide it in & out. Be careful on what you use. You do NOT want to be inhaling any chemicals (ie: dryer sheets) or particles of glass (some vacuum HEPA filters). Be smart here.
And now, in approximately 2 minutes... your mask is complete!
There you have it. A no sew mask that takes less than 2 minutes to make, is soft on your face, has space for a removable filter & is made from something I'm willing to bet most women have in their closet. And - if you've had complaints about the elastic hurting your ears? You've got zero worries here. And you get 2 masks from 1 pair of leggings! Maybe even more if you cut more material from the thigh area if it's not too big. Wear your mask people... the sooner we get this over with, the sooner we get our lives back.
Here's the video I followed if you'd like to watch that too.