Tia / BOTN - KF94 Particulate Disposble Respirator

Overall Result

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Why did this mask fail?


Video Transcript Hey, everyone. Welcome back to the place we are testing every single mask in the world. And by in the world, I mean it, man. We are talking Sweden here. That's right. I got mail from Sweden. Look at that address. I didn't even know what it means.

I didn't even... I can't even... I mean, I'm from Minnesota, I should be able to speak this, but I can't. Can't do it. Very excited to look at this mask from... Let's open this up. It's two kilograms, I guess. Two kilograms? So, four pounds. It's not four pounds. All right. Ooh, got a letter. Let's see. This is from Tobias. All right, Tobias.

"Hi, Lloyd." I'm going to dramatically read this. "Great YouTube channel you have."

Thanks. Tobias.

"Great service to humanity."

You really feed my ego now, which I like. Thank you.

"Really, I mean every single word."

That's so sweet. I clearly haven't read this beforehand.

"I reach out to you from poor Sweden, where we have no mask mandate. Never had, and Delta is lurking out there and might become the dominant variant of SARS-CoV-2."

I'm not sure, actually, when this was received, but I think it probably is definitely the dominant right now.

"That is why very eager to wear a mask that I know performs well. Here in Sweden. We who want to protect ourselves, really need protective masks; i.e., respirators. As the majority do not use masks even indoors."


"So please tell me how well it performs and add it to one of your videos."

Doing it.

"I just bought these quite unique respirators from Amazon. They're also available from South Korea, from various sources. It is the Tia BOTN KF94 respirator. You might notice it is an XL black mask that has adjustable ear loop bands, but I wonder how well the filter performs in your test. Sincerely, Tobias Peterson."

All right, Tobias. Let's do this. Now, we're going to use a different test we've been using. This is the respirator test, because they are using that word. Same test you've used for an N95. So, let's open this up. What am I doing here? Let's look at this packaging. Oh, 6-11-21 is when he sent this. Oy vey! That is in the past. Okay. All right. So we've got the bag right here. Now, this is the KF94 format, which I really, really, really like. In fact, if I would've known about the KF94, before creating a mask factory that makes millions of surgical masks a day, I would've made this style of mask. This is my favorite style of mask. So I've not tested this one before, but I'm very excited to. Let me move all of my accoutrements here. And let's do this.

Now, if you haven't seen this device before, again, this is a little bit different than we've been using before. That's to work with a respirator. The math and everything's a little bit different, which I'll send a link in just a minute, so you can see if you're really curious about how the setup differs. The way Niosh does it is, they use a TSI machine, and they actually have to use bees wax to seal the mask. And it's just very time consuming. So we've used a little bit different format there. So this would not be used in an official test, but it gives you roughly the same results. Let 'er rip!

If you want to know more about how this PFE machine... Easy for you to say. If you want to know more about how this PFE machine works, check out that link. And then, we'll also explain how our setup is a lot different here.

Let's take a look at... This is their Amazon Store. Now, the black XL mask is currently unavailable, which probably just means it's sold out. So the KF94 format, which is confusingly named, if you're in the United States, because it's like, is it KN? Is it a surgical mask? Is it a respirator? What is it? What's going on here? And I love the Koreans, because they were like, "We didn't need to overreach. We don't need to be N95. We don't need to be 95... 94. We'll go 94." It's kind of like the 'seven minute abs" things. As an American, we'd be like, "No, we're going to be better." "Oh, Americans, N95. We're going to be KN96. It's better than..." That's what we would do as Americans. But South Koreans, maybe... I don't know, I'm projecting here, but they're just like, "It's good enough. 94%; it's good enough." It's a great platform. In fact, the KF94 platform is probably the only test that I would trust as much as the Niosh test. So the KF94, basically, the Korean FDA, if you will, is just super strict and thorough with their process. And I really do trust them. So if you see something that is a legit KF94, that is from Korea, I'd put that on my face. I'm just saying.

All right, let's take a look at the actual bag here. High level of sanitation with individual packaging. And that's the other thing, too. Koreans are really, really great at packaging. It looks like a beauty product. Look at this. I love this. It beautiful. Each one is individually packaged. It's a great, great deal.

Ergonomically designed with 3D structure. I notice a lot of ESL talks about 3D structure. It doesn't really make a lot of sense to me, since everything in the world is in 3D. Must be missing something there. Anti-fogging technology around the nose line. Patented adjustable spandex ear bands. Let me open up this one so we can actually see how it works.

What's interesting. He said it was extra large, but this is large. Tobias, what happened there? So it's got adjustable earba... Oh, I see. So it's got this thing. I wonder how well that actually works. That's a really cool design. I wonder how well that works, though. I mean, that alone could really, really help with the fit. This is really nice. Let's put this on. Pinch the nose. Got a great... I wouldn't even call it a nose wire. It's a nice thing. So, it is loose on me, which is good, because then, if you had a bigger head than me, it'd be better. Oh, yeah. Look at that. Oh, my gosh! Wow! That is so cool! And it works! Holy cow! It's kind of weird to have it. So I guess I'd tuck this in. You know, if I was going to some sort of gala, I wouldn't want... Gala, G-A-L-A. Gala. Sometimes I don't enunciate, especially in a mask. You want to tuck in the excess there, but that's great. The fit is great. Feels great. Kind of looks like I could be doing some fashion thing. I don't know what that means.

The smell is just like a... I would call this, almost smells like burning. Which is interesting, because I've tested some of the other KF94's, and they have a similar slight plasticy, burning smell. Not offensive, just interesting. I was just realizing, I just tried a KN95, and it just smelled like that Chinese plastic smell that a lot of these surgical masks have. So I think different countries have ways of manufacturing their plastic or something that gives it that smell. It's a great mask. I hesitate to do the ear loop test, but I'm going to do it, just because it feels... I don't think this is going to fall off in your face, at all. Yeah. See, I knew that would happen. That barely had any tug, at all. That just broke right away.

I don't think it's going to fall off your face, but I think this kind of... Go to the box real quick. I think this is like a really cool design. They say it's patented. I don't know how they're achieving this. It's really neat. But I'll say that the design, however this thing works to give you that snug fit. It also just doesn't feel like it's super strong. So, it's like if you were a child, or something like that, I think... Or just someone who just aggressively pulls on your own face, I don't think it would hold up very well. But if you're just wearing it for everyday use, I think it would be fine. And what's great is, if you did need to reuse this, you could probably just put it right back in the bag, and that's a much better thing than putting it in your pocket.

So, I like it. I'd buy it. It's unavailable on Amazon, so you can't buy it. But if you could? All right. But does any of that crap matter if it doesn't protect you? I almost forgot about the whole point that we're here, which is PFE. Whoa, nice! Dang, that's good! Okay. All right. This is using the NaCl test. Basically, salt, sodium chloride. 99.939! 99.939. It's a good mask, guys. All right. Thank you guys so much for watching. I hope you enjoyed this. Thank you, Tobias, for sending this to me. I appreciate it. And send me some more masks, guys. I'll put my address down below. Love to test them. And I will catch you on that next test.


Made by Korean manufacturer TIA BOTN, these boat-style KF94 masks are a favorite among our testers thanks to an odorless product and superior construction allowing the wearer to get a tight seal around the mouth and nose. While we do recommend these masks, we do advise caution if purchasing them through Amazon given the high number of counterfeit masks sold on their marketplace.

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I have a very small face, and use kids’ sized masks in order to get a seal (or use the Kimberly Clark duckbill, which is extraordinarily light, great for long days and travel but a bit cumbersome to take on and off). BOTN has a “youth” size that fits perfectly, and I love being able to take it on and off.

The inside of the mask is a little plasticky, so on hot days the edges stick uncomfortably to my face, but I’d still recommend it unhesitatingly.

MB October 29, 2023

These are my go-to masks, as they provide high-level protection as well as super comfortable and breathable mask. The only KF-94 mask that’s lighter is Air Queen.

You guys should consider carrying g these masks on this website. Many of us don’t care if the mask is made in only America. There’s nothing wrong with. Korean mask! Plus, many masks we think of as “american” like 3M are made overseas.

Jennifer May 28, 2022

This is a terrific respirator to wear if breathability is important to you and you need to wear it for more than just a trip into the grocery store. (It’s great for that, too.) Once you get the hang of forming the respirator to your face, it’s pretty easy to tighten it or loosen it using the ear loops. Once the loops start to stretch out, I find that doubling them over my ears works well. Of all the masks I’ve tried, this one strikes me as feeling light as a feather and super breathable; it doesn’t get hot against my face like the wellbefore boat style kn95s do. What I find interesting is that after I wear the BOTN for a few minutes, the inside of the mask seems to get a bit moist (not in an uncomfortable way) and it has a way of gripping against my skin to help keep it in place while moving around, talking, etc. I did not initially think I would like this mask because it has more of a paper/crinkly feel than what I’m used to. But now I’m totally won over. Do not be fooled by the crinkly feel!

Kari March 18, 2022

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