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Here Are Some of the Best Face Masks from Outdoor Brands

They're bringing technical expertise to a COVID-19 staple, and the results are predictably impressive.

climber wearing outdoor research face mask
Outdoor Research

While people continue to lose their minds in public over the wearing of face masks, the science is pretty conclusive about their utility, and loads of outdoor brands have gotten on board. We get especially stoked when we see them bringing their unique perspectives to the fore, producing masks that stand out from the pack as comfortable, activity-friendly and, let's be honest, more likely to be actually worn. With that in mind, here are several awesome ones to check out.

Editor's Note: The understanding of what makes a good face mask continues to evolve, as evidenced by a recent Duke study that raised questions about the effectiveness of traditional neck gaiters for combatting the spread of COVID-19 — and a follow-up New York Times article that raised questions about that study (which in fairness wasn't intended to be conclusive about face mask effectiveness in the first place): "Over all, tests of fabric masks have shown that two layers are better than one, and that a snug fitting mask with no gaps is best." Before purchasing any mask, make sure to assess what it actually claims to do and its materials. Follow our coverage of masks here.

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F-Stop Dyota AG+ Ion Mask

This triple-layer mask features bluesign-certified material and an inner layer treated with DuPont’s SILVADUR antimicrobial tech to kill bacteria fast. 

Kitsbow Face Mask

Kitsbow's breathable mask boasts a filter pocket and comes with two replaceable HEPA-type filters. The brand also grants frontline workers and veterans a 20 percent discount.

Western Rise StrongCore Merino Face Mask
Western Rise

The outside of this mask is an ultra-fine, comfort-maximizing merino wool, while the inside uses Meryl Skinlife technology to minimize bacteria. There’s also a sleeve for adding a filter. 

BlackStrap Civil Mask

These masks are lightweight and breathable and come in over 500 randomly assigned colors (or simple black if you desire). For every mask sold, BlackStrap donates one to person in need.

Voormi Everyday Gaiter

We love Voormi's design, which is made of lightweight, odor-fighting merino wool and super convenient to wear around your neck when you're alone and pull up over your ears and nose when close to other humans. Oh and it's beard-friendly too. 

Backcountry Face Mask

Backcountry's mask includes a wire at the nose for the perfect fit and two PM2.5 activated carbon filters.

La Sportiva Stratos Mask
La Sportiva

La Sportiva justifies its higher price point with breathable 3D-Mesh fabric, an anti-microbial treatment and the inclusion of 30 disposable filters that raise it to the level of a surgical mask.  

686 Polygiene ViralOff Archetype Face Mask

With performance stretch fabrics, an antimicrobial finish, hypoallergenic merino wool and stretchy straps, this mask is great for all sorts of outdoor activities. 

Cotopaxi Teca Cotton Face Mask

While Cotopaxi's masks are not crazy technical, they are made from surplus materials, they are reversible (so every mask is like two for one), and the brand also donates a mask for every one sold.

Huckberry Merino Wool Face Mask

Thanks to merino wool, this mask delivers moisture-wicking, breathable, temperature-regulating and odor-resistant properties — plus buttery comfort and a price that's tough to beat.

Outdoor Research Essential Face Mask Kit
Outdoor Research

This kit comes with a breathable face mask, a three-pack of filters and protective storage pouch for more than 95 percent filtration. Additional inventory arrives the week of August 9th.

Shock Doctor Play Safe Face Mask
Shock Doctor

This facemask is lightweight and moisture-wicking — and the only one we have seen with a quick-flip design that makes hydration breaks easy and safe during heavy exertion. 

Under Armour UA Sportsmask
Under Armour

Under Armour went all out designing an athlete-friendly face mask. It features a water-resistant outer shell, an anti-microbial treatment, UA Iso-Chill fabric and polyurethane open-cell foam that lets air through but makes it hard for moisture to pass.  

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