Do you resent every moment spent wearing a face diaper? Do you sympathize with George Floyd’s “I Can’t Breathe” for all the wrong reasons? Does blocking out human facial expressions make you feel emotionally disconnected from your fellow man? Good news! There is an alternative!
I’ve been field-testing some plastic face shields that finally arrived in the mail.
This company makes name tags but when Chinavirus lockdowns hit, retooled to make these plastic face shields. That’s the kind of initiative I like to see in a business. I got a couple and spent the weekend wearing them on errands in urban Commiefornia to test both their effectiveness and acceptance. Where I live, there’s not a single business that does not religiously enforce WHO restrictions, complete with Commissar Karens at the grocery entrance, so the testing has been thorough politically as well as practically.
Unlike the above picture, I did NOT wear a cloth mask underneath the shield. A couple commissars stared at me a little but none complained. I wore the mask to my local gym, the hardware store, the grocery, a couple fast-food restaurants (for take-out) and a trip to the beach.
Good points: YOU CAN BREATHE IN THIS! There is no feeling of suffocation at all. Nothing touches your face except the headband. It will fog a little, down where your breath hits it (there was considerable humidity) but it never reached the point of obscuring vision.
Face coverage was excellent. I’d worried that they would be either too open to the sides to count as a face covering or too enclosed for easy breathing, yet both concerns proved to be unfounded.
The headband is surprisingly comfortable. I have little head hair yet it never slipped, not even when I was grunting out sets of heavy weights at the gym! I pushed myself until the condensation from my breath was raining down this sucker, yet never felt like I was short of breath and it never slipped.
You can also wear glasses with this. My cloth mask makes my glasses fog up.
A surprise bonus is I wasn’t able to touch my face while wearing the shield. That’s how disease really gets spread, y’know, and most people touch their faces many times without even noticing. Face shields prevent that entirely! Be sure to use this as a selling point if/when a Karen calls you out for not wearing a CLOTH mask.
Bad points: The plastic material is the same stuff as the stiff, clear name tags that you wore at large conventions and similar occasions in your past life of America as a free country. No surprise, given the company’s heritage. Thus, it’s not the ideal material for this application. It will blur your vision a little (lots of tiny scratches) and it’s not durable enough to handle wind or mishandling, but honestly you aren’t paying enough for that (current price is $18). Polycarbonate face visors will set you back several hundred dollars.
They are reusable and easily cleaned, however, so with a little care they should last until the plastic roughs up too much for good vision. Probably a month or two of regular use.
Conclusion, for indoor work, running errands and visits to the gym, this allows you to comply with quarantine guidelines* without having to spend your summer filtering oxygen through sweat-soaked bacteria gardens. For outdoors work, however, they lack the sturdiness to survive rough handling and the elements.
*Quarantine guidelines subject to change hourly with no notice or relationship to reality. Plastic face shields prevent kissing political ass.