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Commuting to work by cycling or just cycling in general provides many benefits such as saving on fuel costs, cycle through the busy traffic and keeping you fit and healthy. However, for those that cycle in the city, the healthy part of cycling can be affected by breathing in the fumes from all of those cars stuck in traffic causing high pollution, and this where an anti-pollution mask for cycling can come in handy to get your cycling back to being healthy again.
You see it all over the news about climate change and air pollution in the major cities, which is another reason why more people should try to use cycling as their mode of transport to and from work as this will help benefit you as an individual and also help towards reducing the pollution in the city.
Of course these pollution masks aren’t just for those that commute in the major cities, any cyclist may want to wear these, even out on the country roads, why not? There are still motor vehicles on those roads pumping out fumes that you don’t want to be breathing in whilst you’re having a good workout.
There’s nothing worse than being on the road and you have just done a hard climb catching your breath and then some car comes past spitting loads of fumes out straight into your cycling path and you breath it all in!
These cycling anti-pollution masks are a great and cheap way of just helping to keep your lungs free of polluted air, especially for those who suffer from asthma or bronchitis, but they also help to prevent any long term illnesses that the pollution could cause later on in life.
So let’s take a look at just how these masks actually work and also I will pick out some masks for you to check out for yourself.
How Do These Masks Work?
Anti-pollution masks fit over your mouth just like a normal dust mask, only these masks will have either built in filters or replaceable filter inside them which filter out the pollutants from the air as you breath in, allowing just oxygen through into your lungs.
There is no guarantee that these filters will keep absolutely everything out 100%, but they highly reduce the amount you would be breathing in making your commute more safe.
These filters can also help with filtering out some pollen too, so if you’re just like me who suffers from hay fever, these masks can help with those allergies too.
Buying Guide For Masks
Over in the States, when you are looking for an anti-pollution mask, they should be carrying either an N95 or N99 certification. These are ratings which are issues by the US government and these indicate the percentage of air particulate that a mask can filter.
A N95 rating will protect you from 95% of particles in the air, whereas an N99 rating will filter 99% of particles and it makes sense that the N99 certification should be the one you want for obvious reasons.
In terms of fitting for your mask, of course this is massively important as a mask which has a loose fitting will not provide any protection what so ever as there will be no seal against your face to block out the nasty pollutants.
Having a mask that is too tight though, could affect your breathing as well as being uncomfortable while riding!
I would advise that you look for a sizing chart for each mask you are reviewing as all manufactures may have the same sizes but could fit differently.
There are two attachments on these masks for fitting, behind the ear loop straps or behind the head straps. There isn’t really one fitting that is better than the other, it is purely up to your preference on whether you want the mask strap to go round your ears or your head.
To help the mask seal comfortably around the nose, most masks will come with a metal strip which you can squeeze or pinch on the bridge of your nose, this will also help hold the mask in place too.
Masks With Built In Or Replaceable Filters?
Again, which ever type of mask you go for, it doesn’t matter hugely on whether you go for masks which have built in filters which are disposable masks or masks that have replaceable filters in them, it is personal choice but there are some advantages with both.
Most filters in these masks should last between 6 months and a year before they need replacing. The only problem with disposable masks, is that when the filters are now no good, you have to throw the whole thing away and buy a new one which is also not very environmentally friendly but they are however simpler than replaceable filter masks.
With replaceable filter masks you just have to buy and replace the filters once they reach the end of their life.
Top Anti-Pollution Masks
Here I have picked out some anti-pollution masks for cycling in no particular order;
1. Respro Ultralight
Extremely lightweight and comfortable, the Ultralight mask is made from an elastic stretch fabric that stretches in four directions and provides users with maximum comfort even during training in high humidity and temperature conditions. This unique model will work even at high temperatures – breathable material, specially designed valves, anatomical mask design, convenient Velcro adjustment, and silicone membranes resistant to extreme temperatures, will provide every user with full comfort and protection in the city and beyond. It comes complete with a practical hood pouch.
2. Cambridge Mask Pro
The Cambridge Mask uses military grade filtration technology to filter out nearly 100% of particulate pollution, gases, as well as bacteria and viruses in a fashion friendly mask suitable for the whole family. This is the British Pollution Solution. Independently Tested The filters used in Cambridge Mask meet the N99 standard (higher than N95). The masks use a triple-layer filter system which will protect from a range of airborne contaminants.
3. HONYAO Dust Mask
The mesh of the dust proof mask cover is well-built by premium Nylon, lightweight material, soft texture, quick drying, offering excellent permeability. More thick and full Carbon fiber filter makes the filter layer more clean and sanitary. The ventilation breathable mask with adjustable nose clip, hanging ear design which is not easy to fall off, and stretchy and adjustable strap suitable for most people, double air breathing valve excellent permeability, effective seal and prevents fogging, keeps the mask from slipping. One size fits most adults, also easy adjust the size to meet the most head type.
4. TOLEMI Dustproof Mask Respirator
This dust mask comes with 3 activated carbon filters so it can offer effective filtration of various suspended pollution particles such as fumes, dust, smog, smoke, pollen, mould, spores and other pollutants. The mask is designed with adjustable nose clip & ear loop strap, so you can easily adjust and a more comfortable nose fit and an embossed top panel to help reduce fogging of eye wear, improving field of vision. The mask is made of nylon and spandex, moisture-proof and breathable, comfortable to wear, washable and reusable, the nose clip is made of silicone and metal.
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5. SKYSPER Dust Mask
This mask features double air valve design to help you breath easier and freely when riding the bike. You can adjust the mask freely with hook & loop fastener. Made from neoprene fabric, soft touch and efficiently keeps warm, so this is an ideal mask for the cold temperatures.
Breath Of Fresh Air
Cycling is a great activity in terms of keeping us fit and healthy and it should stay that way when you are out and about sharing the roads with other vehicles, so these masks are a great way for you to keep healthy and reduce the risks of any illnesses that could be caused by pollution later in life!
I think personally, some of these masks look pretty cool too!!
Why not comment below and let me know your thoughts on these anti-pollution masks or ask any questions you may have after reading this article and I will always respond within 24 hours.