After pivoting its premium cycling apparel production to make face masks and face shields for first responders and medical providers in Western North Carolina eight weeks ago with support from the Dogwood Health Trust, Kitsbow has announced the launch of a new face mask product, this time in collaboration with a team from Wake Forest Baptist Health, led by the health system’s chief eellnesso, Dr. Bill Satterwhite. This effort produced a new face mask design that provides long-wearing comfort where protection is essential, especially for front line workers in critical industries, said the company
“Our first priority with personal protective equipment is protecting front line workers, and now we’ve kicked it up a notch by combining our expert apparel design and manufacturing with Wake Forest Baptist Health’s deep experience in community health, wellness, and infection prevention,” said David Billstrom, Kitsbow CEO. “Just like our cycling apparel, our face masks are designed to fit so well that you stop thinking about wearing it, almost as if it disappears.”
The Wake ProTech by iQ Healthtech Reusable Face Mask adds long-wearing comfort where protection is essential. The easily adjustable straps help to achieve a high-quality fit, especially across the cheekbones, which is important to minimize fogging of your glasses, said Kitsbow. The mask consists of four layers, starting with an exterior layer of premium jacquard fabric milled just for Kitsbow, in North Carolina, followed by two layers of protective filter media (sewn into the mask), and finished with an inner layer of 100-percent cotton muslin. Every component of this mask is made in the U.S. except the cord locks that secure the mask to the user’s head.
The mask is offered in six sizes ranging from extra small (XS) to double extra-large (XXL) to help ensure a comfortable and more uniform fit around the face without gaping.
Kitsbow already offers the Kitsbow Face Mask, Reusable, HEPA Type which it began shipping in March as one of the first commercially produced reusable fabric face masks in the U.S. Initially, Kitsbow’s production capability meant that sale was restricted exclusively to first responders and medical providers via a partnership with the Dogwood Health Trust in Western North Carolina.
Recently Kitsbow began making this face mask available to the public, in limited quantities, at Kitsbow.com/PPE.
The Kitsbow Face Mask utilizes a replaceable HEPA-type filter inserted into a pocket of the two-fabric layer mask. Like the Wake ProTech by iQ Healthtech Reusable Face Mask, the original Kitsbow Face Mask is also reusable, reducing unnecessary waste and reducing the aggregate cost of protection compared to disposable filters. Replacement filter media for this face mask are available for purchase from Kitsbow.