Where to Buy N95 and KN95 Masks to Help You Stay Protected Against Wildfire Smoke and COVID-19

Here's what you need to know

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A close up of the Bnx N95 mask in black.
Getty Images/Flavio Coelho/Amazon

If you live in New York, you probably experienced some déjà vu as you pulled out your N95 and KN95 masks for the first time in a while. Except this time, it wasn't because of a surge in COVID-19 cases but due to wildfires burning in Canada. As a result, smoke and haze have seriously brought down the air quality across the Northeast, the Midwest and as far south as the Carolinas, according to the New York Times.

Because of the smoke, New York currently ranks among cities with the worst air quality in the world per air monitoring company IQAir, so countless advisories have recommended limiting outside activity until air quality improves. But for many people, that isn't an option. In that case, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) says respirators—specifically an N95 mask—can help you brave the outdoors, but KN95 masks can also be helpful, per health officials.

Don't have any on hand? It's not a bad idea to be proactive and stock up on them now because, if recent events have taught us anything, it's to always be prepared. Whatever the case, we've got you covered with 19 of the best masks on the market that are just as practical as they are protective against wildfire smoke and COVID-19.

The Best Places to Buy N95 and KN95 Masks at a Glance

But Really, Do Masks Help Protect Against Wildfire Smoke?

To refresh your memory, N95 respirators (or masks) filter out up to 95 percent of airborne particles, large and small (including wildfire smoke), when worn correctly. And not only are they healthcare professional-approved, but they're also certified by CDC and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH). As for KN95 masks, the CDC says they'll provide more respiratory protection than surgical or cloth masks, meaning fewer particles pass through them. In either case, they'll help prevent you from breathing in pollutants that can potentially irritate your respiratory system and worsen chronic heart and lung diseases, the CDC advises.

You can read all about the differences between the two types of masks in this story, but the point is they'll help protect you against wildfire smoke and COVID-19. So without further ado, here are 19 masks you can order online today to be delivered at lightning speed (some even on the same day).

N95 vs. KN95 Which Mask Is Better for You?

1. HDX N95

Best N95 Mask Overall

Yes, The Home Depot sells N95 and KN95 face masks. One of the most popular offerings is the HDX N95 respirator. This ten pack is NIOSH-approved and filters out 95 percent of airborne particles, according to the organization. The cupped design offers low breathing resistance, and it's made to be comfortable enough to wear for hours at a time.

2. Kimberly-Clark Professional N95

Most Breathable N95 Mask

You'll appreciate the breathability of this N95 mask (it's up to 75 percent more breathable than the NIOSH's minimum 95 percent requirement, according to the company). It fits like a headband and has a long bendable nosepiece, so it shouldn't feel too tight or loose. And it comes in a pack of 50, so you won't run out of them too soon.

3. Benehal N95

Most Comfortable N95 Mask

Having trouble finding a mask that fits? Try this N95 from Benehal. It was designed to contour to the crevices of your face for maximum comfort. Not to mention it claims to offer at least 95 percent filtration against particles. One buyer is obsessed: "They seem to fit every member of my family perfectly, my husband's parents, and even my 11-year-old granddaughter. I like the individual packaging, nice to just grab from the box to put in my purse and not to have to use a baggie to keep them sanitary. Will keep buying these and only these."

4. 3M Aura N95

Best Three-Panel N95 Mask

The 3M brand is widely known for manufacturing top-tier products for industrial and healthcare workers and was in the face mask game long before the pandemic. Its Aura N95 is specifically designed for comfort. It utilizes a three-panel design, with an embossed top panel to reduce fogging, a contoured foam-padded nose panel and an innovative chin tab for added security. Basically, it's designed to mold to the contours of your face for maximum protection.

5. BNX N95

Best Mask for Essential Workers

Another NIOSH-approved N95 mask that’s manufactured in the USA, BNX uses a five-layer filtration technology that maximizes protection and comfort. It’s also super breathable—up to 50 percent more than the NIOSH minimum requirement, according to the brand. While it's approved for use by healthcare workers, it’s also available to those of us who want to feel extra protected from germs. (Buyers should note not to alter the mask to make it fit, lest it will be ineffective.)

6. PandMedic MedicPro N95

Best Headband Mask

This NIOSH-approved mask utilizes the two-headband strap design, which some people find more comfortable than behind-the-ear styles. The headband design also reportedly makes it more airtight, which means particles have a lower chance of getting in there. Individually packaged, they're easy to grab on-the-go.

7. Halyard Fluidshield N95

Best Duckbill Mask

Duckbill-shaped masks might feel a little silly, but shoppers say they’re arguably the most comfortable face masks around. The pouch design is twice as large as standard N95 masks, which significantly enhances the overall breathability. These are made in the USA from 100 percent natural rubber, meaning they’re latex-free, too.

8. Miller Honeywell DF300 N95

Best Moisture-Repellant Mask

When it comes to repelling humidity and moisture, nothing compares to Honeywell's multilayered absorption media, resulting in a longer-lasting respirator. And that's good news, because let's be real, there's seriously nothing worse than a face mask that feels damp (even hearing the word makes us cringe). Plus, if you have a latex allergy, you can feel safe and secure using these welded latex-free head straps.

9. WellBefore N95

Best Mask for Travel

WellBefore prides itself on its transparency, so if you have any questions about the science behind its NIOSH-approved designs, you can request documents and lab results directly from the manufacturer. There’s even a video of the mask undergoing a filtration test available on the website. It also ships within 48 hours, so if you need to stock up before a last-minute trip, this may be the brand for you.

10. Maskc KN95

Best KN95 Mask Overall

This Jennifer Lopez-approved brand puts comfort and protection above all else and doesn't fall short of being effortlessly stylish (even though that's far from our primary concern here). Most importantly, customers are super impressed with how breathable these masks are, even after long periods of wear. Better yet, orders placed by 2 p.m. get same-day shipping right now.

11. Brave New Look Kids KN95

Best KN95 Mask for Kids

In search of KN95 masks for your kids? We suggest scooping up Brave New Look's kid's pack of 20. According to the company, they're ideal for children as young as 3 and feature a five-layer filtration system of non-woven breathable fibers that are meant to protect them without making them feel trapped.

12. Vida KN95

Best Disposable KN95 Masks

Vida's KN95 masks are lab-tested for what the company claims will be 95 to 99 percent efficiency (which is super high, BTW). You can choose between ten to 1,000 mask packs (starting at $25), and it's recommended that you wear a new one every day for increased protection since they're not washable.

13. Evolvetogether Rio De Janeiro KN95

Best KN95 Mask Design

Most KN95 masks have five layers of protection, but evolvetogether's Rio de Janeiro mask has six and still manages to be incredibly lightweight and breathable, according to customers. The brand's KN95s have been seen on celebrities such as Sarah Jessica Parker, Jennifer Garner and more.

14. Armbrust Kids KN95

Best USA-Made KN95 Mask

Armbrust USA claims their masks exceed the highest safety standards, so you can feel good about sending your kid to school in one of these KN95s. One review gushes about how this mask is super comfortable for her 7-year-old daughter. "I don't have to argue with my daughter to wear these masks. She has absolutely no complaints. We've given some to her friends, and all the girls love the pink!"

15. ChiSip KN95

Most Adjustable KN95 Mask

ChiSip prides itself on designing functional, FDA emergency use-approved protective KN95s that check all the boxes. We love having the 20-pack handy for daily use. The masks have a five-layer design that makes it hard for particles to seep in or out, and they're breathable, waterproof, lightweight and adjustable. Better yet, you can snag an additional ten percent off when you apply the coupon.

16. WWDoll KN95

Most Skin-Friendly KN95 Mask

Maskne is a real thing, but thankfully Wwdoll kept your face in mind when creating this KN95 face mask. The inner layer that touches the face is made of a soft, skin-friendly non-woven fabric, while the second layer is supposed to block out 95 percent of particles and the outer layer filters larger particles. It's also FDA emergency-approved and comes in a pack of five solid colors, and when you apply the coupon, you'll get 11 percent off.

17. Missaa KN95

Best Prints

Tired of wearing basic blue, black and white masks? Stop by Missaa on Amazon. The masks are skin-friendly and feature a five-layer design that the company claims will filter more than 95 percent of particles. Plus, the ear loops are stretchable, so you can get a comfortable fit.

18. Huheta KN95

Most Colorful Mask

This face mask is five-ply, which is designed to offer superior protection compared to three-ply surgical masks. This means it has more layers of protection to help block more particles, according to the brand. It has a high filtration, too, so it can help keep you protected from inhaling dust, smog, smoke and pollen, as well as airborne particles. Even better, it comes in a pack of 60 colorful masks for less than $30, so it's cute and budget-friendly.

19. Powecom KN95

Most Versatile Mask

This face mask comes in a new design that supposedly offers even more protection. It utilizes a melt-blown polypropylene cotton filter layer that's meant to maximize the breathability of the mask. Not to worry, though: The upgraded design should still offer a filter efficacy of more than 95 percent, according to the brand.

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