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Nearly two years into the COVID-19 pandemic, face masks are still an everyday necessity for many. While reusable cloth masks have worked well up to this point, many experts now recommend upgrading to masks that uphold some sort of efficiency standard, such as an N95 or KN95, for added protection as more contagious variants spread throughout the United States.
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N95 face masks are at least 95% effective at filtering the air you breathe. They are regulated in the U.S. by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) and will be labeled as such, making them easier to recognize as authentic. KN95 face masks are also at least 95% effective, but are manufactured in China and meet Chinese standards. They’re more widely available than N95s and many find their flexible design more comfortable, but it can be difficult to distinguish authentic masks from the fakes, as they are not made or certified in the U.S.
To help readers find the best products, we tested and reviewed KN95 face masks to look for signs of counterfeit products and help you find legitimate KN95s online. We also contacted major N95 manufacturers like 3M and Kimberly-Clark to confirm which online websites were authorized retailers. Finally, we limited this list to Amazon-only options, since the online retail giant is a major source of available masks.
N95 face masks available on Amazon
KN95 face masks available on Amazon
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Prices were accurate at the time this article was published but may change over time.