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Since the world has turned to masks to protect against spreading COVID-19, we’ve lost the ability to display multiple facial features, imperative for communication, as well as the ability to display our personality and feelings.

However, our choice of masks can give much-needed insight into our personality, career, social stature, political leanings, and daily habits. Let’s begin…..


The N95 Respirator

Doctors scramble for best practices on reusing medical masks during shortage | Live Science
Those of you walking around with one of these…the most coveted and effective against the spread of COVID, means one of a few things.

You’re a physician or healthcare worker, and have access to the good stuff
You’re a relative or friend of a healthcare worker, signifying someone likes you
You have impeccable foresight, meaning you purchased these before the pandemic hit
You have connections to the underground where bootleg masks are being hustled
However, if the mask is frayed, turning color or less crisp looking….it means you got a hold of one by sheer luck and have been using it the entire season…..


Full Face Respirator

3M FULL FACE RESPIRATOR 6900 | INCLUDES 3M VAPOR CARTRIDGES #P100 | SprayEZ – Spray Equipment and Coating
I’ve seen a few of you walking around with these babies… could only mean one of a few things…

You work for the government
You’re rich
You want to also be prepared for an industrial accident
You’re very cautious
You’re not very social
You don’t mind losing out on sex for safety


The Surgical Mask

Surgical Mask, 3-ply | Praxisdienst
For those of you who wear these, it could mean one of a few things:

You’re a healthcare worker who works for a facility low on N95 respirators
You’re a healthcare worker with access to N95 respirators but afraid of getting mugged
You dig the look and have secretly always wanted to be a doctor
You found a site that sells these out of China for 10 cents a pop, hence a diligent shopper
You’re cheap and waited to walk into a store that handed them out for free


The Plain Cloth Face Mask

Cloth Face Mask – Made in the USA by Inkpressions – InkPressions
The cloth face mask appears to be the most popular. So what does it say about you?

You don’t mind doing laundry
You like soft things
You have a runny nose and want your mask to double as a hanky
You like security
You’re comfortable with your optical communication skills
You’re confident with your eye makeup
Although you’re aren’t 100% hip on masks, you will make the most out of a rough situation
You plan on having sex during the pandemic


The Patterned Cloth Face Mask

Safe Sorry Adult Small Reusable Cloth Face Mask – Annie’s Blue Ribbon General Store
For those of you who purchase a cloth face mask with a pattern, all the above hold true as the plain face mask except additionally you may…

Plan to get food on it so need a distraction from the stains
Are upset people can’t see your face so want to add some personality
Are really into accessorizing and feel the mask must match the outfit

Homemade Masks

Oswego County accepting donations of homemade face masks | Public Service News |
Homemade face masks could imply a variety of things…including:

You love arts and crafts
Your closet is filled with clothes too small and you feel better about repurposing some of them
You have unique tastes and can’t find a mask in a store to your liking
You’ve been extremely bored during the lockdown and need to keep busy
You have a grandma and want to make her feel better



Is Your Fishing Neck Gaiter a Good Face Mask? – On The Water
Although gaters appear in studies to have the least success at controlling COVID spread, and even one study suggested they worsen spread, they are by far the coolest of the facial coverings. So when one wears a gater, it means one of a few things:

You are cool and fun to be around
You are probably an athlete
You know how to multitask
You like to be warm and covered at the same time
You’re practical
You don’t waste time reading the medical studies about gaters
You might have had a burglary hobby at some point in your past
You’re thinking about taking up burglary

So as you see, facial coverings can give into huge insight into who’s behind the mask. But don’t give away all your secrets….some people out there like mystery…….

Daliah Wachs, MD, FAAFP is a nationally syndicated radio personality on GCN Network, KDWN, iHeart Radio and is a Board Certified Family Physician