For almost two For years, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has issued complex – and sometimes contradictory – guidelines on when to wear a mask, depending on whether you are vaccinated indoors or out. With all the confusion, it’s easy to miss a large demographic that remains unvaccinated: Children under the age of 12 still can’t get the pictures at all. In many parts of the country, they have also returned to school in large numbers (or not, as the case may be).
I myself have two small children and watching them adapt to the climate wearing a mask was a strange, proud thing. My son entered the pandemic as a 2-year-old child resistant to masks. At 4, he calmly wants his mask and puts it on before going out on the playground. Unvaccinated children over 2 years of age should wear face masks in public places. If your children have returned to school or are planning larger holiday gatherings, you probably need to refresh the hiding place of your masks.
I spent almost two years testing masks on my children. As I mentioned in my guide to the best adult face masks, the ideal mask is the one that fits well and that your child will like. I am also careful about masks that have been independently tested and certified by the new standards for the production of ASTM face masks. If you are looking for ideas for entertaining your young (or not so young) children, check out our guides for preschool children during quarantine and how to set up a virtual workspace for your children.
Updated in October 2021: We added updated information and new face masks from AirPop and Flo Mask.
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