It looks like the nation is gearing up to reopen. I remain skeptical it will end well, but we are planning on returning to work/school nonetheless. So are tens of millions of students in the US (excluding the entire state of CA apparently).
My university is weeks away from inviting over 25k students back to campus. So far, the university has provided the faculty with:
- A poorly made $3 face shield that instantaneously disintegrated
- Two child-sized fabric face masks (custom printed with college logos surely procured at a ludicrous cost). They fit my 6 year old perfectly.
- One poorly fitting adult face mask
- A spray bottle of bleach
- A box of paper wipes.
Suffice it to say, I feel like I’m on my own.
I just placed an order for three 8-packs of fabric face masks from Costco.com for $25/box ($3.125/mask) last night. The first time I saw them online was a week or two back, but I vacillated and they were gone within 24 hours.
I can’t vouch for the quality of the masks because they hasn’t arrived yet, but I’ve been very impressed with the 32 Degree brand and bought many of their items in the past from Costco. If they are crappy, I’ll return them. If nothing else, I hope they will fit my 5 kids. I’m certain we will be losing masks on a daily basis for the foreseeable future (>1Y?) so it’ll be nice to have some backups.
I couldn’t justify the $0.44/mask price for the disposable masks. The break even between this cloth mask and the disposable masks is 7 uses.
A few updates:
- Costco now sells a youth version of the mask: https://www.costco.com/32-degrees-kid’s-unisex-face-cover%2c-8-pack.product.100669712.html
- Costco now sells a 4-pack of the adult version in-warehouse for $11.99.
- We own 32 of the adult mask and 16 of the youth mask.
- I really like the masks. My 11+ year old children use the adult masks. My 8 year old wears the child mask. The child size is too small for my 6 year old. My 10 year old is between the child and adult sizes so he’s using a different type of mask.
- They are a little thin but fit really well. They are pretty darn comfortable. The kids like them. The adults like them.
- This isn’t terribly scientific, but my wife did a “blow the candle” test with them and the masks performed well. The family couldn’t blow out the candle with the mask on.
- Given how disrupted supply chains are, they seem to deliver great value given the circumstances.