Wearing cloth masks can reduce
the spread of droplets
by more than 70% and up to 90%
if everyone wears one.


Why wear a cloth mask?

  • Protects others.
  • Reduces the spread of droplets and surface contamination.
  • Lowers the risk of infection when social distancing is difficult (shopping, public transport, public places, crowds, etc.).
  • Discourages us from touching our faces.
  • Frees up medical masks for those that really need them.


Advantages of cloth mask.

  • Can be made at home.
  • Uses recycled materials (clothes, old cloth, old sheets, etc.).
  • Last longer.
  • Easier to use and reuse.
  • Can be personalised.


When to wear a cloth mask?

  • Every time you go out.
  • On public transport.
  • When shopping.
  • In crowded places.
  • When greeting people (even from a distance).


Who should wear a cloth mask?

  • You.
  • Your family.
  • Your neighbors, people in your community, the general public.


Who should not wear a cloth mask?

  • Infants under two years of age.
  • Medical workers.
  • Those advised to wear medical masks by healthcare workers.


Use your mask.

  • Attach by ear loops or long ties behind head & neck.
  • It fits snuggly on the nose (use pliable wire material)
  • Fits from bridge of nose to just below chin.
  • It lies flat on both cheeks.


Clean your mask.

  • Wear for MAX. 3 hours.
  • Remove from ties (do not touch front).
  • Wash cloth mask after every use.
  • Wash cloth mask in soapy water.
  • Dry thoroughly. Iron if possible.
  • Store in clean dry place.


DO’s and DON’T’s of a cloth mask?

  • Do wear one in public.
  • Do make sure it fits properly and is comfortable.
  • Do make sure you can breathe through it.
  • Do wash after every use.
  • Do wash after every use.
  • Don’t use medical masks.
  • Don’t put ANY mask on children under 2 years of age.
  • Don’t share your personal cloth masks.
You can download the “wear your mask” steps in many different languages.
Cloth masks are accessible, reusable,
cheaper, last longer and are easy to make.
Download our “How To” manuals and videos and try it out!


What to use for a cloth mask?


100% tightly woven cotton (clothes, sheets, pillow-cases, table cloths, batiq, kikoy leso, left over dutch wax, cotton material, etc.).


Ties to attach your mask (fabric, elastic, strips of old t-shirts, shoe-laces).



Pliable wire for nose piece (open paper clips, old electrical wire, etc.).


Additional layer (tissue paper, old polar fleece, flannel, old sports clothes, disposable mask).


How to make your own mask? Download the videos and “How to” pdfs in many different languages.

Download 1
Download 2
Download 3
Download 4
“Sharing is caring.”
Now that you know how to make it,
it is time to learn how to share it.
Share It
Level 1

Make a mask.

  • Make some masks.
  • Use your mask in public.
  • Let people know you are making masks.
Level 2

Create or join a group!

  • Who else is making masks in your area? Introduce yourself!
  • Start a conversation to share ideas and experiences.
  • Create groups vis social media.
Level 3

Get organised.

  • Who needs masks in your community?
  • How can your group match this supply and demand?
  • Who in the group can do what?
  • Decide on the task division between group members.
  • Seek out new members that may not sew but can help with group and community organisation.
  • What other community groups do you need to reach out to, to make sharing cloth masks easier and more effective?

Share your masks.

  • Identify drop off or collection points for people to get cloth masks.
  • Decide on your exchange principles (for cash, for donations, for material to make more masks, for specific charities, etc.).
  • Identify your contact person in other community groups and identify tasks for each group member.
  • Test your ‘sharing masks’ ideas and strategies – adapt and change until you are happy that the system works for everyone.
  • Try to keep it as simple as possible.
    Use WEMAKEmasks resources and toolbox to help successful community action.
Level 4
Level 5

Becomes established.

  • Become an established community group.
  • Get people involved to organise community mobilisation.
  • Make tutorials.
  • Use WEMAKEmasks resources to do talks and get more of your community involved etc.
  • Seek funding.
  • Create a small business model.
You can download the
“Share your mask” steps
in many different languages.
5+1 steps to slow the spread
to yourself and others.
You can download the 5+1 steps for printing or social media.


Is part of a global solidarity network to promote the use of cloth face masks to slow the spread of COVID. We aim to connect people in local communities, who are making cloth masks by making these small acts of solidarity visible.


COVID-19 is a novel coronavirus to which we humans have no immunity, little treatment and no known vaccine at this time.

Cloth masks when worn in public can reduce the primary source of infection by respiratory droplets by up to 90%.

We need to work together to slow the spread of COVID-19 until science catches up with it.

The new normal is protecting others from this disease – wearing face coverings is a necessary evil until we have a vaccine.

Cloth masks are accessible, cheaper, reusable, climate friendly, reduce waste and promote well-being and the safety of all.


Aims to support all those working to make a difference by making, wearing and sharing cloth masks in the time of COVID-19.


WEMAKEMASKS is run and supported by a group of volunteers, living in different countries and spanning different continents. We all have different professional backgrounds but as concerned global citizens, we want to support communities in the time of COVID-19. Find out more about us here.