Can Surgical Masks Be Worn on Both Sides?

Does it matter how you wear your mask? Technically, both sides are made of the same material, but there is a correct way to wear one. Does that mean that surgical masks can be worn on both sides? Well, it's not that simple. 

A popular conspiracy theory dictates that surgical masks protect the person being operated on, not the surgeon, so wearing a mask backwards is the true way to wear it. This, of course, is false, considering that both sides of the mask are made from the same material.

Which side should I wear my mask?

We suggest wearing your mask color-side-out, with the nose wire on the top. Wearing it correctly ensures a better seal, which means more protection. Check out the video above for a more detailed explanation. 

Can a mask be worn on both sides?

Technically, it’s the same material. It’s literally 25 GSM virgin-spun polypropylene. The conspiracy is over!

However, it is structurally designed to pull back the mask against your face, so if you do wear it backwards, like a lot of people do, you’re actually not getting as good of a seal. 

Let’s talk about the conspiracy theory. The theory states “masks were developed to protect surgeons, not people.” So the theory states you turn the mask around if you want to protect yourself. But it’s the same material!

Bottom line: You should wear your mask the way it was designed

Structure actually matters, and the better seal that you have, the more it’s going to protect you. So, wear it the right way.