How to properly wear, care for your cloth masks

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- We've all been told to wear cloth masks out in public and it's now mandatory in some areas and circumstances.

However, they only help if you do it right.

The masks help protect others from germs you don't know you have, especially in places where it's hard to stay at least six feet apart.

They can also prevent you from touching your face, and remind you to cover coughs.

Don't touch the front of your mask while you're wearing it.

Doctors say whether the mask has ties or elastic doesn't matter.

"Either are okay as long as the fit is snug around your face, covers your nose and mouth, and is not used around your neck or on your forehead," says Dr. Aaron Hamilton of the Cleveland Clinic Patient Safety Institute.

Remove your mask by the ties or ear loops, not the front, and wash it after each use either by machine on the gentle cycle, or by hand in hot, soapy water.

After washing your mask, be sure to thoroughly wash your hands, too.
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