Face masks and the coronavirus: here’s what you need to ...

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Face masks and the coronavirus: here’s what you need to know

When to wear one, where to get one, and how to make your own

On 1 May 2020, the country enters level 4 of lockdown, which allows people to get out of the house a little more. As a result, president Cyril Ramaphosa has announced that everyone is required to wear a face mask outside of their homes, including when using public transport and shopping. So we should all do our part to try to flatten the curve by masking up.

The coronavirus is spread by droplets generated when an infected person coughs, sneezes, or even speaks. Many people with the virus show no symptoms, so it is important to be as cautious as possible. Wearing a mask reduces the transmission of droplets from an infected person. It also reduces  inhaling a large number of droplets from others. Therefore, it can drastically reduce exposure to the virus when close to other people, especially in environments such as taxis or shops.


  • When travelling in public transport

  • When leaving the house to go shopping or seek healthcare

  • When self isolating, if you have to be in contact with other(remember to maintain physical distancing)

  • When talking to other people (such as shopkeepers, police, doctors, etc) 

  • When working outside of the house 

      Source: Department of Health, Western Cape Government 

Youtuber and South Africa’s queen of DIY, Suzelle, was commissioned by Western Cape Premier Alan Winde to demonstrate how to make your own mask. Learn how to fashion a face mask from a bandana, denim or any other fabric. 

Here are some small businesses in Cape Town that are making masks, which can be ordered online.

Get your company name or logo branded on reusable or disposable masks (available for adults and kids) as well as on face shields and hand sanitisers with the AroundAboutMasks project. Just mention that you’re a CapeTownMag reader when you order and get a 10% discount. Place your order on the AroundAboutCars website.

Mzansi Masks:

Sexy Socks:

View this post on Instagram

FABRIC FACE MASKS ???? Only R55 each and delivered nationwide throughout lockdown!⠀ ⠀ Our fabric face masks are made in Cape Town by a local women's empowerment project using fabric off-cuts otherwise destined for landfill. A portion of proceeds goes towards providing face masks to those most vulnerable and less fortunate.⠀ ⠀ • Double-layered⠀ • Soft & gentle on the skin⠀ • Machine washable & reusable⠀ • Prevents you from coughing or sneezing on others⠀ • Reminds you not to touch your face⠀ ⠀ Shop online at WWW.SEXYSOCKSSA.COM⠀ (NB: only our fabric face masks can be delivered during the lockdown period, not our Sexy Socks or Jocks.)⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Please note that these are not surgical grade or filtered and will not prevent you from contracting COVID-19. Wash before first use and after every wear.

A post shared by Sexy Socks (@sexysockssa) on Apr 22, 2020 at 1:48am PDT


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Every day is a challenge for us as a small business and with the Corona virus outbreak we have had to think of our safety as well as the safety of our staff. Both personally and financially. We have the opportunity as a small fabric manufacturing company to be able to make a needed product at this time. Hence our decision to supply washable fabric face masks. We are proud to say that for each fabric face mask sold we will be donating one to someone who needs one but doesn’t have the means. ➡️ PLEASE NOTE: This mask is intended to help you to not touch your nose and mouth while out of the house. It also will partly prevent you from coughing or sneezing on others. If you feel any symptoms please stay at home and isolate. We encourage isolation as #1!! This mask in no way will stop you from getting COVID-19, please rather purchase a medical grade mask with a certificate should that be what you want. ⬅️ If you are interested in our fabric face masks please read more info & shop via our website

A post shared by Zana (@zanaproducts) on Mar 17, 2020 at 4:24am PDT


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You buy 1 ???? > we give 1 ???? In a country where some have means to protect themselves and some don’t, We are super happy to do a little bit to help some people get what they need to be, or at least feel, more safe and protected in their communities. From the seamstresses who are supporting their families by making our masks to people who are buying masks and in turn giving one away to someone in need- there is a lot of giving and good being done. Kindness and generosity- these are the values I hope we can rebuild our communities and economy on. Pictures of some of the places and people we’ve donated masks to... in and around Cape Town. We give away masks every week, so if you know communities or causes we can help then get in touch ???????? #strongertogether #masks4all #1for1 #southafrica

A post shared by Ethical Eyewear & Clothing ( on Apr 19, 2020 at 6:50am PDT

Mia Mélange:

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We're making fabric face masks for delivery in SA ???????? now (available online - link in profile), in an answer to the call by the Western Cape Department of Health. We are grateful for the opportunity to offer meaningful employment to members of our wonderful team during this time. The health and safety of our team and their families remain a top priority. A few of the women on our team have sewing machines at home, which means they can work with minimum exposure to others. The outer layer of the mask is a 100% cotton tightly woven Shweshwe fabric. The inner layer is a thinner, white, 100% cotton fabric. Our masks have been designed to either tie at the back of your head, or to loop over the ears. Visit our website to buy now or to read more! Contact us for wholesale enquiries:

A post shared by Mia Mélange (@miamelange) on Apr 9, 2020 at 9:56am PDT

Kiki & Co:

Let's Mask SA is challenging all South African households to make 10 washable fabric masks that will then be donated to those in need. It’s pretty easy - all you need is some fabric, elastic and a basic sewing kit. To find out more about how to create, wash, and drop off the masks, you can visit the Let’s Mask SA website


By Daryn Wood


Make moving during lockdown easy with Cape Removals.

Join in on weekly Repofit classes to help improve your running game from home.

Take a stroll through a virtual art exhibition at home

Don’t miss Kopling Mbumba online every Wednesday with the Beerhouse Comedy Club 

Get lockdown fit with weekly dance fitness classes

Find out more about the lockdown strategy.

Get the latest updates on COVID-19 in Cape Town.

Got questions? Check out our COVID-19 FAQ.

Want to help during these tough times? These charities need your support. Plus, show some love for these small businesses in Cape Town


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