Use of Cloth Face Coverings to Help Slow the Spread of COVID-19

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) knows from recent studies that a significant portion of individuals with coronavirus (COVID-19) lack symptoms and even those who eventually develop symptoms can transmit the virus to others before showing symptoms.  This means the virus can spread between people interacting in close proximity—for example, speaking, coughing, or sneezing—even if those people are not exhibiting symptoms.

CDC recommends wearing cloth face coverings in public settings where other “social distancing” measures are difficult to maintain (e.g., grocery stores and pharmacies) especially in areas of significant community-based transmission.

While maintaining 6-feet “social distancing” remains critical to slowing the spread of COVID-19.  CDC is additionally advising the use of simple cloth face coverings to slow the spread of the virus and help people who may have the virus, and do not know it, from transmitting it to others.

How to Make a Cloth Face Covering

CDC provides some guidelines for making a cloth face covering in the attachment below:

 DIY-cloth-face-covering-instructions.pdf and in this video: How to Make Your Own Face Covering.

How to Wear a Cloth Face Covering

Cloth face coverings should—

  • fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face
  • be secured with ties or ear loops
  • include multiple layers of fabric
  • allow for breathing without restriction
  • be able to be laundered and machine dried without damage or change to shape

Should Cloth Face Coverings be washed or otherwise cleaned regularly? How regularly?

Yes. They should be routinely washed depending on the frequency of use.

How does one safely sterilize/clean a Cloth Face Covering?

A washing machine should suffice in properly washing a face covering.

How does one safely remove a used Cloth Face Covering?

Individuals should be careful not to touch their eyes, nose, and mouth when removing their face covering and wash hands immediately after removing.

You may find more details regarding Cloth Face Coverings at


This information is courtesy of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). You may learn more and stay up to date by visiting