The omicron variant has become the new dominant Covid-19 strain in the United States. Although cases appear to be plateauing in certain parts of the country, the highly contagious variant has led to the CDC updating its face mask guidelines.
The CDC is now advising that everyone upgrade to "the most protective mask you can that fits well and that you will wear consistently," according to the CDC website. It also suggests medical-grade surgical masks and N95 respirators.
These masks provide a tighter seal around your face and are capable of providing up to 95% protection against airborne particles. KN95 masks, China's equivalent to the N95, can also provide similar protection, although these masks are not certified by any U.S. agency. Additionally, there are many counterfeit KN95 masks, so buyers should beware when buying these masks online.
If you're wondering where to buy N95 and KN95 masks — we're here to help. We're rounding up online retailers that offer N95, KN95, and surgical masks. Alternatively, make sure to check out our guide on where to buy rapid Covid tests and how to get a free at-home Covid-19 test.
Where to buy N95 and KN95 masks right now
- Amazon: shop all KN95 masks
- Lowe's: shop N95, KN95, and disposable masks
- Office Depot: shop all medical grade masks
- Staples: shop all NIOSH-rated N95 masks
- Walmart: shop all disposable masks
Where to buy N95 and KN95 face masks
Honeywell DF300 N95 50-Pack: was $52 now $43 @ Amazon
The Honeywell Safety DF300 N95 is a NIOSH-approved mask. It features a humidity and moisture resistant filter that repels moisture. It's dropped down in price a few dollars.
3M N95 Masks 20-Pack: $23 @ Amazon
These NIOSH-approved N95 masks block at least 95% of airborne particles. This pack includes 20 masks.
LG Airwasher KF94 40-Pack: was $56 now $36 @ Amazon
The LG Airwasher KF94 is South Korea's version of the N95. These masks are made with 4 protective layers and feature an adjustable nose clip and ear loops. They tend to sell out rapidly, but Amazon has stock of this 40-pack.
BYD Care Face Mask 50-Pack: was $24 now $12 @ Office Depot
This pack includes 50 level 3 surgical face masks. Each mask consists of three layers and includes elastic ear loops with a one-size-fits-all design.
RSA KN95 Face Masks 10-Pack: was $34 now $29 @ Adorama
KN95 masks are generally used by healthcare workers in China. (Healthcare workers in the U.S. use the N95 mask, which provides a tighter seal). That said, KN95 masks still provide better protection than cloth masks. Adorama has this 10-pack on sale for $29.
3M Aura Particulate Respirator N95: $21 @ Home Depot
The 3M Aura Particulate Respirator N95 features a 3-panel design that helps to accommodate facial movements. It's NIOSH-approved for at least 95% filtration efficiency.
KN Flax KF94 Mask 20-Pack: $33 @ Amazon
The KF94 face mask is South Korea's equivalent to the N95. This pack includes 20 individually packaged KF94 masks that offer four layers of protection.
US government to provide free N95 masks
The Biden administration has announced that it will offer 400 million N95 respirators for free. The masks will come from the nation's stockpile and they'll be available through pharmacies and community health centers.
Americans can kept expect to see the free masks at their local pharmacies starting the week of January 24, according to NPR. No further details have been given yet on which grocery stores and pharmacies will have the masks.
What are NIOSH-approved masks?
The National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) has a list of approved N95 masks it recommends. These masks filter at least 95% of airborne particles. NIOSH-approved manufacturers include 3M, Ironwear, BYD, and more. The CDC offers tips on how to tell if an N95 mask is NIOSH approved.