I never would have predicted that face masks would become the biggest accessory trend of 2020, but they certainly have as we continue to do our part to slow the spread of COVID-19. As a fashion editor, I’ve had my eye out for stylish face masks to add to my cart and have been looking to our team at Who What Wear to see which ones they’re been wearing. Curious to find out their top picks, I asked them to share which ones they've been wearing.
Ahead, see the exact face masks our editors are buying and get ready to shop them. They’re sharing snaps of how they’re styling them and weighing in about why these 9 face masks brands are their favorites—from cool tie-dye prints to bold prints to the one our editor in chief compares to a luxe silk pillowcase. Here, see our top picks, including the affordable face mask I’ve been wearing on repeat.
These affordable masks from Evolvetogether are the #1 style I wear on repeat. The simplicity of them means that they'll go with pretty much any outfit I put on, which is probably why they're a favorite among celebs like Hailey Bieber. Plus, I love that they have a range of masks stamped with the geographic coordinates of some of my favorite cities like Milan and NYC. —Kristen Nichols, senior editor
"This cotton mask claims to be 'soft, breathable, and comfortable' and I can't help but agree. I love how light it is while still feeling like it's substantial enough to actually be protecting (both yourself and others). Plus, the adjustable ear loops ensure the perfect fit even if, like me, you have a small face. Lastly, I'm a big fan of the subtle eyelet fabric that's neither boring nor too out there." —Nicole Akhtarzad Eshaghpour, senior market editor
"This mask is an investment, but let me walk you through why I think it's worth it. First things first, it's pretty and comes in a lot of colors. I am a fashion editor after all, so this is an important consideration! But more seriously, it's made of silk, which is a smart move for a number of reasons. The fabric is known to possess antimicrobial and antibacterial properties, and silk is also much comfier than other materials and slides across the skin, making it less likely to irritate your skin. And just like silk pillowcases are great for not soaking up all your creams and serums, the nonabsorbent nature of the material helps keep skin hydrated and lets all that lovely skincare stay on your skin. (Picture rubbing a cotton swatch vs a silk swatch over your face and you can imagine the difference in how much more drying the cotton would be.) Now let's talk about the disposable filter: it's made from melt blown. If that term is new to you, like it was to me, let me explain. The material is used in surgical masks because it has smaller "pores" meaning it can better block particles in the air. Why does it have smaller "pores"? Because unlike woven fabrics like cotton, which naturally have more space between the fibers because they are woven together, melt blown is, "mechanically, thermally, or chemically bound from separate fibers of molten polymers." Science. Also, the ear straps are adjustable so you can get the perfect fit for your face. And last, but not least, there is a charitable component. For every mask sold, they will donate five to frontline workers. That's all I've got, and after writing this, I've basically convinced myself to buy another. Let's match?" —Kat Collings, editor in chief
"While at first, I was only wearing simple black masks, and the typical filter ones I figured it was time to start getting creative with them as we're going to be wearing them until COVID-19 is under-control, and why not make a cute statement while protecting others? So I waded into the waters of printed/ statement masks with this Van Goh inspired mask from Esty; and I kid you not, the first day I wore it, I got so many compliments. After that, I was sold on not wearing bland masks; so now I'm looking forward to splurging on more unique masks like Gravitas's Maskcelebrating women's right to vote, or Lirika Matosh's viral strawberry face mask." —Jasmine Fox-Suliaman, audience engagement editor
"Cotton Citizen’s cool basics are some of the comfiest items in my closet, and their face masks are no exception. This one is is made from 100% cotton, so it’s breathable and lightweight, two claims I can vouch for after having worn it all day in the summer heat. The other aspect that makes this is a really good mask is that it has a bit more fabric than others I’ve tried so it’s fuller coverage and not too tight against my face. Plus the obvious, which is that the washed-out tie-dye print is just plain fun to wear—highly recommend!" —Anna LaPlaca, associate editor
"I've been wearing two masks as of late. One is actually the same silhouette our editor in chief, Kat, swears by from Night. The silk fabric doesn't irritate my skin and is quite comfortable. I've also been wearing this mask from Banana Republic. I've tested quite the variety, and aside from Night, this BR style is top-notch in terms of comfort with the adjustable elastic ear straps." —Bobby Schuessler, senior market editor
"As far as face masks are concerned, this one is definitely a splurge, but the quality justifies the price. It's made of 100% silk, which feels so nice against your skin, and it fits really well (which I've found to be rare when it comes to masks). It even comes with extra nose pieces and ear loop rings. I'll definitely be adding the black or leopard one to my collection for fall." —Allyson Payer, senior editor
"I've never been one to shy away from prints, and with masks, I've been really going all in on my maximalist preferences here. Since I can't really wear a bold lip color, I've decided to have a little fun with my face masks. I've been wearing this one all summer long and it also came with two other masks in equally eye-catching prints. The cotton fabric is comfortable and breathable––I've even worn it on some very hot summer hikes. It also has some wire on the nose area so you can mold it to fit your face so it stays in place." —Sarah Yang, managing editor, The Thirty
"I officially own three different silk face masks from Catherine Gee, and I swear I get compliments and questions whenever I leave the house. The fit is perfect—secure but not cutting off circulation anywhere—and the cotton lining is so plush and breathable. It's one of the few masks I've tried that not only looks beautiful, but is so easy to wear that I almost forget I'm wearing it. I love this Coral shade, and I also have the Mauve and Two-Tone pink and orange." —Erin Jahns, beauty editor
“I love this colorful print mask from Goldies Tees. They’re super breathable and are made from a double-layered pima cotton for added thickness and protection. The elasticized ribbed loops make it so comfortable and the pretty floral print is perfect for jazzing up my basics.” —Judith Jones, market editor