When the world shutdown in March 2020, I honestly didn’t think 15+ months later, we would still be wearing masks. But that’s our reality, and according to CDC recommendations, children two and up should be wearing a mask.
My toddler, Piper, turned two this month, and I’ve been on a mad dash to find a mask that would fit her petite face. We have tried at least a dozen different brands, and to be honest, most were still too big. Thanks to social media, my plea for help has netted hundreds of recommendations! I ordered a few brands we hadn’t tried and I’m here to report back. Below is a list and links to the most popular picks from the hundreds of suggestions, plus some tried and true tricks to getting your toddler to actually keep the mask on.
Most popular masks: Old Navy! This was an overwhelming consensus, with parents saying the accordion style mask fit their children the best.
Runner Up: Carter’s. We have several of their masks for our 8-year-old and they fit great for smaller faces.
Runner Up: Ty Beanie Baby masks. Parents liked the small size and adjustable ear straps, plus the fun characters helped get kids to enjoy wearing them.
Best mask for smaller faces: Crayola. These masks are wonderful! While they are still a little too big for my two year, I put them in the dryer and they did shrink up some.
Best mask for REALLY small faces: JoyColor. I ordered this recommendation from Amazon and these are, hands down, the smallest masks that I have found. My toddler, who hasn’t kept a mask on for longer than 30 seconds, wore this mask comfortably for a good 5 minutes the first time I put it on her.
Best disposable mask: Dr. Talbot’s and Just Play masks on Amazon. Both were credited with fun designs and being small for younger children.
Tips for getting your young child to wear a mask
*Use a timer. Start with a few minutes wearing one, then work up to longer amounts of time.
*Have your child try out a mask doing an activity they enjoy. Maybe it’s an art project or the playground. Make it clear to your child that in order to do the certain activity, they need to try and keep the mask on. You can also try wearing one watching a show on tv or taking a walk around the neighborhood.
*Praise good behavior. When they keep their mask on, give lots of praise. Don’t give attention when they take it off. When they put it back on, then start the praise again.
*Wear your mask! Kids follow by example. If you wear yours, they will hopefully follow suit.
Bottom line, have patience. It takes time for young children to get used to wearing a mask. Find the right fit, the most comfortable fabric for them, and hopefully it will become second nature!
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