What Is the Best Mask for Smoke?
Depending on where you reside or your constant route, exposure to smoke might be your everyday ordeal – or something you frequently have to encounter. Smoke, depending on concentration levels, can range from unhealthy to deadly.
However, there are ways in which you can protect yourself, where avoidance is not possible. This is primarily through smoke masks. Albeit graded in the category of effectiveness, smoke masks help filter dangerous air-borne particles so they do not pass through your lungs and cause damage. Essentially, smoke masks filter the unhealthy part of the air so you can inhale considerably healthy air.
Type of Smoke Masks
- Non-oil resistant (“N”)
- Oil resistant (“R”)
- Oil-proof (“P”)
As has been mentioned, smoke masks help filter the air you breathe in to block unhealthy particles from getting through into your lungs. Smoke masks – particularly in the US, and in some parts of the world – are graded based on their effectiveness, thereby creating a hierarchy.
Smoke masks are classified using letters and numbers, with both combinations denoting the effectiveness of the mask. Usually, before masks are classified, they are tested by the designated authorities – the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) in the US – and then labeled accordingly.
There are three letters and three numbers used in the classification. The letters are N, R & P, while the numbers are 95, 99 & 100. The classifications are predominantly based on how well the masks are effective in filtering oil – although they are smoke masks (sounds weird, yeah).
Masks with the letter “N” are essentially non-resistant to oil particles. Although they filter smoke particles, they are powerless against oil particles.
Masks with the letter “R” are oil-resistant masks. Although these particular masks filter smoke, they can also put up a fight against oil. However, they are not fully effective against oil.
Masks with the letter “P” are oil-proof masks. Although they filter smoke, they also effectively filter oil.
The three numbers, on the other hand, refer to the percentage of effectiveness.
Masks with the number “95” are 95% effective. Masks with “99” are 99% effective. Masks with “100” are 99.7% effective.
Consequently, a combination of the letters and numbers show the type of mask a particular mask is, and how effective it is. Best to keep an eye out for them.
Our Overall #1 Rated Pick
In terms of smoke masks, and one that is particularly effective, our overall pick would be the NASUM M101.
The mask is made with comfortable materials that ensure there is less irritation and more proper filtration. The filtration, though top-grade, comes with an extra filter of unwoven cloth that plays the role of an assistant filter.
Additionally, the mask comes with a built-in feature – a dual pot attachment for good ventilation, which both bars toxic gas and aids respiration.
- 4 Components
- Full Range of Protection
- Good firming
- Highly fashionable
- Extra filter
- Dual pot for filtration
- Comes with protective goggles
- It can be on the expensive side
Masks For Smoke – Buyer’s Guide
Although our overall #1 rated pick is one of the best smoke masks on the market, there are still great smoke masks that can be purchased – particularly where our pick might be temporarily unavailable. This section serves as a buyer’s guide.
Key Categories of Masks
It’s best to describe the types of smoke masks in detail here. Again, the category of smoke masks are created by combining numbers and letters. The numbers and letters include three each.
The N Category
The N95 masks essentially refer to masks that are non-oil resistant and can filter 95% of unhealthy air particles. These masks are specifically smoke masks, and nothing more. If smoke, dust, and some other air-polluting particles are your concern, this works. Thing is, when oil particles enter into the mix, there might be a problem. These kinds of masks have no filter feature when it comes to oil. Hence, oil and oil particles will most likely get in unchecked. If you are getting an N95 mask, it should be for smoke issues alone.
The N99 masks are the same as the N95 masks, except they deal with 99% of air particles. And no, they cannot deal with oil either.
The N100 masks are the same as the N95 masks, except they deal with 99.7% of air particles. They are no match against oil either.
However, the N99 & N100 masks are rarely available, as they are used for more specific purposes outside air filtering, and some factors are considered, sometimes, before they are sold.
The R and P categories, though they filter smoke, are not entirely for smoke filtering. These are for other purposes – such as for surgical and medical purposes generally – and smoke filtering is an incidental feature and not the specific function.
Knowing Category of Masks
Before smoke masks are put out for sale and use, they are first tested. The tests are to show the effectiveness of the mask, and which category the mask is to come under.
The testing of the mask is usually done by a designated body or institute saddled with such responsibility. As has been said, the institute saddled with such responsibility in the US is NIOSH.
After the masks have been tested, its category – the combination of the number and letter – is stated on the mask, as well as a reference number. Check your mask before getting it. If it does not have those, it is either untested or fake. Either way, do not buy it.
How Smoke Masks Work
It is not so difficult. Smoke masks contain filters that trap the air particles that constitute air pollution and can be bad for users’ health. This, in turn, allows users to breathe considerably good air. However, when used for a long period, the filters can get congested and stop working properly.
Best Masks for Smoke
Now that you know what smoke masks are about, how they work, and what to look out for when getting them, it is best to check out some great smoke masks that you can get when you decide to hit the store – whether Amazon or an actual store.
The top best product [hide]
Voice device for sound transmission
Adjustable for fitness
It is adjustable to make for a proper fit
Voice device for clear sound transmission
Made with anti-aging features that makes it less susceptible to scratches and destruction
It is necessary to occasionally replace the ink cartridges to make the filtration technology more effective, or users might be faced with slight respiratory problems.
Made with anti-allergic material
Half-face piece makes it easier to be used in normal areas
Soft and fitted
Made with materials that are less likely to cause allergies
Head protection from toxic gases with headband
Comfortable and made with non-toxic materials
Top exhalation valve to filter out toxic gases
Has large lens for undisturbed view
Large lens for undisturbed view
It is somewhat difficult to clean
Comes with protective goggles
Dual Pot for good ventilation
Firm, yet adjustable
Comes with detachable anti-splattering and shock-resistant goggles
Usable for a long period
Easy to wear
Large lens for wide view
On the expensive side
Top grade filtration system
Top-grade filtration system
Masks For Smoke FAQs
What is the point of the numbers and letters (like N95)?
How do I know the grade of a mask?
NASUM 308 Face Cover
Our pick for the best smoke mask is still the NASUM 308 Face Cover. Its filtration technology is on par with most top masks, and it is both very comfortable and highly fashionable. Additionally, it comes with protective goggles.
You’ve various aspects about masks, including what they should be made of and some of the best masks on the market. Now you can make an informed choice.
You are good to go!