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BREATHE Facemask Development


Our Goal: Protect Yourself and Others


DISCLAIMER: This cloth face covering is not intended for use in the diagnosis of disease or other conditions, or in the cure, mitigation, treatment, or prevention of disease. It is not intended for use by a health care professional or for use in a health care facility or environment. It is not a substitute for social distancing or other health guidelines. It should not be placed on children younger than 2 years or age, anyone who has trouble breathing, or anyone that is unconscious, incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the cover without assistance. Please refer to the enclosed Cloth Face Covers FAQs from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for more information.

With the disappearance of effective filtration facemasks from the civilian marketplace, we decided to make our own using the best filtering materials we could find and use the most modern construction methods and tools.  We invested our resources into satisfying the following design requirements:

  • STATE OF THE ART FILTER MATERIAL
  • STATE OF THE ART CONSTRUCTION TECHNIQUE
  • FITS PROPERLY, SEALS A PERIMETER AROUND THE FACE
  • COMPACT SIZE, EASY TO USE, EASY TO CARRY
  • SOURCE COMPONENTS MADE IN USA WHEN AVAILABLE REGARDLESS OF COST DIFFERENCE

MATERIALS: Meltblown Polyethylene is the key.

We sought the same materials found in N-95 respirators and surgical masks. Both types of masks use MELTBLOWN POLYETHYLENE as the filtration medium.  Material selection was a key to good filtration based on performance figures we found in our research.

(Graph from: Simple Respiratory Protection—Evaluation of the Filtration Performance of Cloth Masks and Common Fabric Materials Against 20–1000 nm Size Particles https://academic.oup.com/annweh/article/54/7/789/202744)


The outer shell of the mask is a NON-WOVEN synthetic fabric. It provides structural strength and acts as anchor for the elastic ear straps to raise a strong conical air chamber that won't collapse while you inhale.

FIT MATTERS: Edge to Edge full filtration coverage

We aimed to achieve a good seal around the face with the edge area of the mask to direct air through the surface of the filter by minimizing gaps around the sides and edges. The BREATHE mask, while made of soft material, is designed with a structural geometry that creates a semi-rigid chamber when worn and under tension by the straps. This helps remove the nostrils and mouth away from the surface of the filter media.  We also incorporated a wide metal nose bar for a more custom fit.

CONSTRUCTION: Ultrasonic Welded Seams

We have put away needle and thread and invested in new technologies to deal with these modern synthetic materials.

Surgical masks and N95 respirators are bonded using ultrasonic fabric welding technology. We invested in the equipment and adapted our assembly process to use ultrasonic fabric welding as well to manufacture the Breathe ™ mask.

NO EXHALE VALVE : Protecting Others

The function of our mask is as much to protect others as yourself (2). Breathe ™ masks will not feature an exhale valve because these valves allow unfiltered exhaled air out into the environment. It is a small sacrifice in comfort for a greater public good.

MADE IN USA: Sourcing components from USA suppliers.

Breathe ™ masks are assembled and manufactured in Ventura, California. We took the time to design something that we could build reliably and continuously in terms of a stable supply chain. We tested several rounds of designs, scales, materials, and construction approaches. We also had to deal with unreliable supply chains coming out of China, prompting us to find suppliers and manufacturers of our components here in the USA.

In Conclusion...

We worked very hard on this, making every choice along the way with the single-minded idea to make the best performing facemask we possibly could. Despite the simple appearance of Breathe ™, it is all business. Every aspect is carefully designed so that form follows function. We feel good about our loved ones wearing the Breathe ™ mask.

GO SEE THE PRODUCT



CITED SOURCES:

(1) Simple Respiratory Protection—Evaluation of the Filtration Performance of Cloth Masks and Common Fabric Materials Against 20–1000 nm Size Particles https://academic.oup.com/annweh/article/54/7/789/202744

(2) If Your Mask Has a Valve, It's Half Useless https://vitals.lifehacker.com/if-your-mask-has-a-valve-its-half-useless-1843182019