Can You Wash KN95 Masks?

Can You Wash KN95 Masks?

Today the world is facing a major pandemic that is spreading faster through contact among people. The pandemic is called the coronavirus, which is a disease whose cure has not been found up to date. However, the World Health Organization has put in place measures that help in reducing the spread of the virus. Among the measures that are implemented across the world is the action of wearing masks if you are moving in the public. KN95 is a type of mask that is highly recommended for use by health professionals because it is effective in curbing the spread of the virus.

Washing your mask

Buying a KN95 mask is not like buying any other mask because the mask is a bit expensive. Why? This is because it has been designed to improve its efficiency and comprises of various layers. It is also designed in a way that it has low breathing resistance. So, you can use the mask just for some hours, and then you end up disposing of it. However, if you are using a regular mask, you can wash it with hot water and a detergent.

Why should you use hot soapy water?

To explain the reason behind this, let’s look at the nature of viruses and bacteria. Since all the microbes are not visible by our naked eyes, but scientists have gone further to study them and concluded that they have a body structure. The virus is protein in nature and therefore hit the water is perfect for killing them. This is because the hot water has a high temperature, and high temperature denatures the protein structure. Once their protein structure is denatured, then the microbes and bacteria cannot survive.

Can You Wash Your KN95?

Unfortunately, you cannot wash your KN95 for reuse because of the nature of its design. The mask was mainly designed to be used only for up to 72 hours without washing. However, some researchers have come up with ways of decontaminating the KN95 masks. Duke Regional Biocontainment Laboratory researchers have found out that hydrogen peroxide, which is vaporized, kills germs on the mask. They have published their research in various articles so that other health professionals can use vaporized hydrogen peroxide to disinfect their Kn95 masks.

Another method of decontaminating the mask that was approved for institutions that may lack vaporized hydrogen peroxide is the use of dry heat. You can dry heat the mask at 70 degrees Celsius and reuse it. However, you cannot decontaminate the mask using dry heating for three rounds; the maximum is three rounds.


You can’t wash a KN95 mask with hot water like the way you do for other masks. The best way to decontaminate the KN95 mask is by using vaporized hydrogen peroxide, which does not affect the mask. However, it is crucial for health workers and other people who are using the mask to be careful and avoid reusing KN95 masks which are not disinfected or sterilized. This will render their health and also the health of their loved ones.

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