How to Make a Washable Reusable Face Mask

You may decide you would like to make your own washable, reusable face mask using things you already have in your home. Making a simple face covering may not be as difficult as you think, and you don't have to be able to sew.

Making your own face covering will allow you to create something unique which suits your style and compliments your wardrobe.

The UK Government has provided the instructions below for two types of mask. The first uses an old T-shirt and requires no sewing whatsoever. The second requires minimal sewing and is made using some cotton fabric squares. Why not give them a try.

Make Your Own Face Covering Using a T-Shirt

You will need:

  •  an old t-shirt that you do not want anymore
  •  scissors

Step 1: Cut a straight line across the width of the T-shirt (front and back) approximately 20cm from the bottom of the T-shirt













Step 2: From a point 2cm below the top right-hand corner of the fabric, make a 15cm horizontal cut through both sides of the fabric that is parallel to the top of the rectangle

Step 3: Cut down towards the bottom of the fabric until you reach approximately 2cm above the bottom edge. From here, make another 15cm cut that runs parallel to the bottom of the fabric to make a rectangle that can be discarded



Step 4: To make the ties, cut open the edge of the long strips f fabric. Unfold the main piece of fabric and place over the mouth and nose. The 4 strips act as ties to hold the cloth face covering in place and should be tied around the head and around the neck.



A Sewn Cloth Face Covering

You will need:

  • two 25cm x 25cm squares of cotton fabric
  • two 20cm pieces of elastic (or string or cotton strips)
  • needle and thread
  • scissors

Items you need for a sewn cloth face covering

Step 1: Cut out two 25cm x 25cm squares of cotton fabric. Stack the 2 squares on top of each other.

Step 2: Fold over one side by 0.75cm and hem, then repeat on the opposite side. Make 2 channels by folding the double layer of fabric over 1.5cm along each side and stitching this down.



Step 3: Run a 20cm length of elastic (or string or cloth strip) through the wider hem on each side of the face covering. These will be the ear loops. Use a large needle to thread it through. Tie the ends tightly.


If you only have string, you can make the ties longer and tie the covering behind your head.

Step 4: Gently pull on the elastic so that the knots are tucked inside the hem. Gather the sides of the covering on the elastic and adjust the covering so it fits your face. Then securely stitch the elastic in place to keep it from slipping. These elastic loops fit over the ears.

Credit UK Government

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