Studies estimate that we are throwing away 129 billion face masks per month - breaking down to 3 million face masks per minute. To say disposable face masks have been rapidly adding to the global plastic waste crisis almost feels like an understatement with such staggering numbers. But we know this. They are everywhere.
As we approach the 2 year mark of the pandemic (can you believe it?), it seems clear that face masks have become the new normal for individuals outside of trades and trends in COVID-19 variants arising indicate this usage is here to stay. We can’t deny that this is also for good reason. Disposable face masks offer lab tested protection that allow us to protect ourselves and the people around us. However, in taking precaution against the global pandemic we have put our environment at risk of being overwhelmed by an unprecedented amount of face mask pollution that can take up to 450 years to decompose.
That’s a lot of trash and a lot of centuries.
So what do we do? We suggest going bio. And we don’t mean using those reusable face masks.
More sustainable than that reusable face mask?
If you’re environmentally conscious and have discovered us through research on sustainable face mask options, you’ve probably worn a reusable face mask. While it’s no doubt that reusable face masks help reduce the amount of disposable face masks that end up in the landfills, they aren’t exactly a real solution to protection.
The environment is inextricably connected to the humans who occupy it - for good and for bad. From this ecological perspective, sustainability is not just about the land but the people in it. Can we truly consider reusable face masks sustainable if they don’t offer real bacterial and particulate protection in light of this pandemic? While reusable face masks do have some amount of efficiency, a recent study has suggested that cloth variants only offer 37% particle protection. On the other hand, disposable surgical-grade alternatives recorded protection rates at about 95% - a significant difference. For these reasons, many reusable face masks are not considered medical-grade.
This is precisely why certain companies and industries cannot use reusable masks within their teams and why hospital workers and people on the frontline wear disposable face masks.
This is also why we created ELoMed™ the bio face mask. We wanted to create a better choice.
Biodegradable Adult Disposable Masks Can Change Industries
The most honest answer to the question “are disposable masks bad for the environment?” is probably yes and no. In thinking about this question and the important industries that use adult disposable masks, we thought of the bio face mask. We made a biodegradable 3 ply face mask to create a better choice model that could change the face mask industry as well as the industries that use them - and will continue to do so, with or without the pandemic (frontliners, we see you!). Going biodegradable is a way in which we can protect each other and the environment.
When we think of what it means to protect each other, we often think about one another as humans. Conversely, when we think of what it means to protect the environment, we often don’t consider the human lives that occupy it. We believe protection goes both ways, because sustainability is not just purely environmental or societal. It is interconnectedly both.
Out of the many things this global pandemic has shed light on, one thing is clear: it’s more important than ever that we consider how our actions and choices not only affect the environment, animals, and their habitats, but also each other as occupants and co-habitants.
Every decision we make can be viewed as one that impacts the overall quality of our environment as well as our community. We can genuinely make the world better through conscious purchases and intentional habits, because consumer power is real. Just look at the milk industry for reference on that one.
ELoMed™ stands for a Better Choice
Our face masks are USDA BioPreferred because they are certified bio based. That means the fabric of our biodegradable masks is made from renewable resources such as corn, sugar cane, sugar beet, and cassava. Not only are our face masks biodegradable, but they’re effective: yielding a >98% BFE and a notably high lab tested breathability.
So you can breathe easy (pun intended) knowing your bio face mask is not only keeping yourself safe but contributing less to this global waste and energy crisis. Bio based also means less carbon emission! If you’re still questioning it, that’s awesome because we are more than happy to send our lab results and have conversations.
About ELoMed™ the bio face mask
ELoMed™ is a proud woman and minority-owned face mask manufacturer based in Florida. The bio face mask and shipping materials are all proudly made in the USA too.
Our bio face masks are 100% sustainably packaged in quantities of 50. All ELoMed bio face masks are sealed in certified-compostable bioplastic bags and packaged in fully recyclable paper-based boxes printed with water-based ink. No oil, no plastic, no problem.
These PPE face masks are 100% sustainably packaged with zero plastic, and use certified compostable bioplastic bags and recyclable paper packaging printed in water-based ink
Shop ELoMed™ and go biodegradable
If you want to go bio and make the switch, you can find ELoMed™ the bio face mask here. We offer free shipping for all domestic orders. :)We are a B2B company too and we are happy to fulfil wholesale orders within the United States and globally. Place a wholesale order for our biodegradable face mask today or make an account! As always, we would love to have a conversation. Feel free to contact us with any questions.