The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has highlighted the need for personal protective equipment (PPE), which as of this writing is in short supply. As has been made abundantly clear by the current situation, the time to prepare is before a crisis occurs.
Several years ago, I became aware of an innovative new N95 particle respirator called the ReadiMask®. Although simple in concept, it’s actually quite revolutionary.
Developed with professionals in mind, the patented ReadiMask is the world’s first and only adhesive self-sealing disposable multipurpose safety respirator. Available with and without an integrated anti-fog eye shield, the ReadiMask is affordable, weighs next to nothing and features a compact, flat configuration that makes it easy to carry on your person or keep a few in your gear/duty bag.
The ReadiMask is being exclusively distributed to the global law enforcement and corrections markets by Security Equipment Corporation, best known for its excellent SABRE® OC (pepper) sprays. The RediMask is manufactured by Global Safety First, LLC, which also handles distribution and sales of the ReadiMask to the general public.
Security Equipment Corporation provided me with its SABRE-branded ReadiMask Adhesive Sealing Particle Respirator with Anti-Fog Eye Shield for evaluation. This was long before the COVID-19 pandemic.
The ReadiMask Adhesive Sealing Particle Respirator with Anti-Fog Eye Shield provides both eye and respiratory protection from airborne particulates and biohazards in one package. The eye shield is flexible and allows eyeglasses to be worn over it. The full-face mask is designed to conform to the face with a comfortable fit. The hypoallergenic medical-grade adhesive securely seals the mask to your face without irritation, providing an effective complete perimeter seal for improved protection from hazards.
Standard N95 masks often provide a false sense of protection. Masks that apply with elastic straps or ties don’t fit properly, allowing gaps around the edges of the mask where contaminants can enter. ReadiMask’s medical adhesive creates a tight seal that enables the filter and eyeshield to provide substantial protection.
The ReadiMask substantially reduces exposure to pepper spray, bacteria, spores similar to anthrax, blood-borne pathogens, viruses, smoke particulates, hazardous particulates, pollution, spit and bodily fluids, mold, asbestos, dust, debris, etc. This is confirmed by testing conducted by Nelson Labs and the US National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH).
The ReadiMask with eye shield also reduces your risk in a fire by protecting your eyes from the smoke and filtering soot and other particulates. But it doesn’t protect you from carbon monoxide and other toxic gases that are formed in fire. The eye protection and filtration of soot and other particulates give you some time to escape a fire before the gases build up to lethal levels. It shouldn’t be relied upon as full protection in a fire.
The ReadiMask is NIOSH approved as a N95 particulate filter respirator. The N95 is designed to protect against particulate matter such as dust, fumes, mists, aerosols and smoke. It’s also effective against biological particles such as bacteria, viruses, mold spores, pollen, animal dander and allergens. It’s effective against aerosolized droplets, in particular, smaller droplets which evaporate to form droplet nuclei.
The ReadiMask uses a special polypropylene air-purifying filtration material and a hypoallergenic medical-grade adhesive at the perimeter of the mask to seal the mask and, when properly worn, filter more than 95% of airborne particles that are at least 0.3 microns in diameter as per 42 CFR 84. It’s a single-use N95 particulate respirator. It’s not oil-resistant.
The high-tech filter material reduces breathing resistance, making it easy to breathe. The eye shield is constructed of polyester and designed to protect the eyes from irritants and airborne particles. The eye shield is very flexible and doesn’t interfere with wearing eyewear or using shoulder-fired weapons. It’s not ballistic impact resistant, so ballistic protective eyewear should be worn when appropriate, as always.
The yellow ReadiMask offered to the public by Global Safety First is designed for high visibility and is very popular with travellers. It has a reflective strip on top to allow first responders and other rescuers to easily spot the wearer.
The ReadiMask is easier to use than traditional masks. It has no elastic straps or nose clips to contend with. It’s simple and quick to don. The mask comes individually packaged in an easy-to-open, heat-sealed polyester package with double tear-notches and a hang notch. Simply tear the package to open, peel away the paper strip covering the adhesive, press the mask onto the center of the forehead, then seal the top, sides and bottom with your fingers for a complete seal. Your face should be dry when putting on the mask to ensure a secure seal. Complete instructions are printed on the ReadiMask packaging. Security Equipment Corporation also has an instructional video on its website.
The ReadiMask is exceptionally comfortable compared to other masks. There’s no painful elastic strap or bulky nose clip to contend with. The transparent eye shield offers excellent visibility, with no restriction of peripheral vision.
I found no noticeable breathing resistance with the ReadiMask. There wasn’t any interference with communication when the mask was worn. The mask didn’t fog during my testing, but the manufacturer states that, although the ReadiMask was developed with the most advanced anti-fog eye shield on the market, slight fogging may occur, depending on the amount of humidity in the air.
The ReadiMask is very secure. The manufacturer has a video that shows the mask being worn underwater and remaining secure to demonstrate its adhesiveness. The mask is easily removed without discomfort.
The presence of facial hair (specifically beards) impacts the integrity of the seal, as is the case with all masks. According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), although human hair appears to be very thin to the naked eye, it’s actually much larger in size than the airborne particles you want to avoid inhaling, creating an entryway. Therefore, the vast majority of particles, gases, and vapors follow the air stream right through the facial hair and into the respiratory tract of the wearer.
The ReadiMask is available in either gray or yellow. It’s available in three sizes: Small (Child – fits children 5+), Medium-Large (Adult) and XL (Adult XLarge).
The SABRE-branded law enforcement and corrections ReadiMask is only offered in gray and with the anti-fog eye shield. It’s only available in Adult Large size.
The ReadiMask and all its components are manufactured in the USA. It has a five-year recommended shelf life, with a best used by date printed on the package. The ReadiMask is National Tactical Officers Association (NTOA) Member Tested and Recommended.
To Sum Up
The ReadiMask is an outstanding multipurpose N95 particle respirator that should be included as part of everyone’s personal protective equipment. It’s become part of mine. MSRP for the SABRE ReadiMask Adhesive Sealing Particle Respirator with Anti-Fog Eye Shield is $9.99.
SABRE ReadiMask Adhesive Sealing Particle Respirator with Anti-Fog Eye Shield
Manufacturer: Global Safety, LLC
Law Enforcement and Corrections Distributor: Security Equipment Corporation
Size: Adult Large
Height: 9.5 in. (24.13 cm)
Width: 8 in. (20.32)
Thickness: 0.045 in. (0.114 cm)
Weight: 0.02 oz (0.6 g)
Package Dimensions: 6.875 x 5.5 x 0.175 in. (17.463 x 13.97 x 0.445 cm)
Filtration Material: Polypropylene
Eye Shield: Polyester
Adhesive: Hypoallergenic, Non-Latex Medical Adhesive
Packaging: Polyester (PET) heat sealed, easy opening double-side, notched, hang tab located on top
Shelf Life: 5 years
Quality Control – Manufactured Under: Approved Quality Manual; MIL-STD-105E; Military Standard Sampling Procedures and Tables for Inspection by Attributes; Title 42, Approval of Respiratory Protective Devices, Subpart E, Quality Control, Subsection 84.41, Quality Control Plans
I received this product as a courtesy from the manufacturer so I could test it and give my honest feedback. I am not bound by any written, verbal or implied contract to give this product a good review. All opinions are my own and are based off my personal experience with the product.
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