A few weeks ago, I took my boys for their Annual Wellness Exams. Their pediatrician was impressed that they had kept their masks on for so long while waiting for their appointment. She mentioned that many parents had expressed some of their challenges with getting their kids to wear masks. She said those who did wear them didn’t keep them on long, due to comfortability or lack of familiarity.
Let’s be honest, we all struggle with keeping masks on. Even as adults, they can be hot, uncomfortable, and also challenging to breathe through. However, we all know how important they are right now, so I thought I’d share some helpful tips and tricks I’ve used to get my kiddos to keep them on.
1) Start with short trips (Mask Practice)
Asking a child to wear a mask for an extended period when they’ve never worn one before – like a trip to the grocery store – can be a tall order. Start with short trips to help them become familiar with wearing them in public.
Saturday mornings are “Donut Days” with my boys. While we haven’t traveled to many places with the current pandemic, I’ve continued to take them to our little donut shop down the street from our house to give them an ongoing sense of normalcy and also to give them an “outing.” We get up early and go to our local donut shop in our pajamas. Its the first place I began having them wear masks. The total trip lasts less than ten minutes from when we put our masks on, walk inside, order our donuts, and leave. It has created a perfect opportunity for “mask practice” because it was a place they both really want to go and are super motivated to keep the masks on if that’s the only way to get their beloved sprinkle donuts!
2) Make Sure the Mask Portion Fits Correctly
If you have kids of varying ages, you know that a generic “kids size” mask doesn’t tell you much about the age and proper fit. I’ve found some kid masks are too small, and some are too large for my three-year-old. Find a mask like Frogglez that can adjust to fit your child’s nose and mouth properly and keep them out of their eyes (more on this below).
3) Make Comfort Essential
Again, young children may not fully understand the implications of how masks can save lives. A comfortable mask will increase the probability of them leaving it on. I have found that masks with elastic bands tend to be tight, uncomfortable, and really easy for Deuce to take off. Sometimes if they don’t fit right, they even fall off.
A family member made the first mask we had for Deuce. It was during the start of the pandemic, and we had no idea how long this would last. As you can see from the photo, the elastic band was pulling on his ears, which didn’t make it comfortable for very long, and he wanted to take it off after a few minutes.
A Mask Solution Built for Kids
After sharing my product review with so many of you on Frogglez Goggles, they sent me their newest product for the boys to try out, a Kids Reusable Cloth Mask. The difference between this mask and the others we have tried is that they’re made with actual kids in mind, versus the other way around.
The face mask portion is made of breathable fabric with child-sized replacement carbon filters for added protection. It comes with 10 replacement filters and each can be used for up to 5 days before needing to be replaced. The mask blocks pollution, smog, ozone, and odors, while the filter keeps airborne irritants like dust, allergens, and pollen from penetrating the face covering.
There is a built-in wire nose clip inside the mask that can be adjusted across the nose’s bridge for added fit and comfort, making it a better fit for your specific child.
What I found to be the best part was really the straps; they are made of soft material and are adjustable so that they can adjust to your child. Instead of traditional elastic bands, these soft straps have an adjuster bead that you can pull in or out to adjust to your child’s face, then a safety bead to insure it doesn’t move out of place.
This mask has been by far the most comfortable Deuce has had and kept on, and I’ve had zero complaints! The mask is easily washable after each use, and at times Deuce has even forgotten he’s had it on.
A year ago, I never would’ve thought I would obsess over my three-year-old’s ability to keep a mask on, yet here we are. When I’m out and about, I see tons of mothers and children wearing masks. While it’s been a nuisance for everyone, what a blessing to know we’ve risen to the occasion! If you’re having trouble getting your little one to wear a mask, I hope these tips will help you. Definitely give the Frogglez mask a try, leave me a comment, and let me know if it worked for you!
Keep up the excellent work, mamas, we’re all in this together :-).
*The Center for Disease Control (CDC) recommends that children under the age of 2 should not wear masks in public. This particular cloth mask by Frogglez® is made for kids ages 3-10.