Difference between a valved and non valved FFP2 mask

Updated: Feb 18, 2021

What is the difference between valved and non-valved FFP2 Face Masks? – And which ones are recommended?

With an FFP2 Mask it is somewhat harder to breathe than with a conventional medical face covering. That’s why these special masks are also available with a valve - making it easier to breathe. However, these valved masks should not be used in the Corona pandemic and we explain why.

When an FFP2 Face Mask fits properly, it can protect both the wearer and those around them from droplets and aerosols - preventing infection with the novel coronavirus.

An FFP2 Mask keeps at least 94 percent of aerosols away from its wearer or their surroundings. This is ensured by a three-layer non-woven fabric and electrostatically charged filter material that attracts and traps particles from the air. So, it is no wonder that FFP2 Masks are comparatively thick and for this reason, it is usually more difficult to breathe through them than through a simple surgical face covering. But this should not mean that it can't be comfortable in wearing high quality FFP2 masks. Our premium FFP2 mask (purism line) is using the best breathable fabrics without loosing the filtration needed to be a certified as a FFP2 mask.

Valved FFP2 Face Masks – no protection for others

A valve built into the FFP2 Mask can provide a remedy. This principle was developed to protect its wearers from dust or toxic substances in the air without making it difficult for them to breathe. But in the Corona pandemic, these FFP2 Face Masks should actually be banned. This is because FFP2 Masks with valves protect their wearers, but not their fellow humans.

While the valve closes during inhalation, the air is filtered through the mask material. When exhaling, the valve opens, making breathing much easier. However, the exhaled air flows out essentially unfiltered. If the wearer is infected with the coronavirus, he passes it directly on to his environment.

Most train companies and airlines do not accept the use of valved masks

During the pandemic passengers must wear a face covering on both trains and airplanes. To protect against Corona, travellers should not wear face masks with a valve for exhalation on airplanes and trains. "The purpose of the mask is to protect your environment. But through the valve, one's own breathing air is expelled unfiltered," explains Prof. Tomas Jelinek of the Centre for Travel Medicine in Berlin. For this reason, airlines also generally do not accept the use of such masks. Lufthansa, for example, states: Valved FFP2 Masks as well as scarves and shawls are not permitted on board, as they allow the breathing air to escape to the side and do not provide adequate protection for fellow travellers.

We only sell non-valved FFP2 Masks as they protect you as well as your environment! Our FFP2 masks are Non Valved to protect other people as well!

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