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Double-masking becomes latest effort in fending off the coronavirus

“The air has to follow this tortuous path,” a virus transmission expert says of the mask layering effort.

Mitt Romney
Utah GOP Sen. Mitt Romney on Capitol Hill.
(Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images)
Updated: January 15, 2021 - 3:07pm

The Facts Inside Our Reporter’s Notebook

Americans and others have taken – or have been required to take – myriad approaches toward stopping the spread of the coronavirus including the wearing of a mask, and in some more extreme cases wearing goggles or a face shield.

However, the new newest and perhaps trendiest one now appears to be doubling up on masks.

If one mask prevents some germs from getting through, the new thought is that two or three should be even more effective in blocking out germs.

Dr. Linsey Marr, an expert at Virginia Tech in virus transmission, said in a recent New York Times report that the idea is backed up by research data suggesting "you start achieving pretty high efficiencies" when combining multiple layers.

"The air has to follow this tortuous path," she said. "The big things it’s carrying are not going to be able to follow those twists and turns."

Several coaches, politicians and other high-profile individuals have been spotted wearing two masks on top of one another.

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