What Mask Filters Should We Sell?

As you probably know by now etee stands for everything touches everything else.  Our goal is that all our products come from the earth and return to the earth, meaning biodegradable, eco-certified ingredients (non-toxic) and plastic-free.

Now that we're in the middle of a Global Pandemic, we are challenged with the desire to stay true to our mission, while also providing the protection people deserve.

You see, while Our FaceMasks fit perfectly with this mission - they are made with GOTS certified organic cotton and they are reusable - it is recommended to use a filter to ensure the masks provide maximum protection.


So we've been looking at filter options and the quickest to get in stock, cheapest and most tested is the disposable/single-use PM2.5 multi-layer, activated charcoal filter (with layers of synthetic melt-blown fabric), BUUUUT it's single use and it won't biodegrade any time soon.


At the other end of the spectrum is a cotton filter that is more expensive, will take longer to bring to market and is not as proven. 

Reusable antibacterial cotton filter - set of 4 for $12.00USD. SLOW TO MARKET, BIODEGRADABLE, EXPENSIVE and unproven.


Another option that has been popping up in DIY circles is the Coffee filter.  It is - as yet - unproven, but it would be biodegradable and less expensive to produce.  

Disposable paper filter (coffee filter type) - set of 20 for $5.99. REASONABLE SPEED TO MARKET, BIODEGRADABLE, UNPROVEN

Soooo, with this in mind, we're feeling that in light of the Pandemic, it makes most sense to get the PM2.5 filter to market as quickly as possible while we continue to look into the more sustainable options; both from an 'ecological footprint' perspective AND from a functionality perspective.

We always LOVE to hear your perspectives though, and we read all of your comments and take everything you say into consideration, so....

Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!

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  • As much as I hate to say it, the priority right now is safety and whatever that entails. I say go with the disposable/single-use PM2.5 multi-layer filter.

    Margaret Langston on
  • I like the idea of the blue shop towels- presumably biodegradable, two brands reportedly tested better but as mentioned above cotton masks are to protect others and I suspect stronger filters would only protect well enough for medical personnel if sides of the mask sealed to face to prevent side-flow of air (double sided skin tape).

    Sue Abell on
  • Short-term, I’d prefer to go with the proven filter, even if not consistent with your mission. A mask with unproven, but eco-friendly filter would provide a potential false sense of security. The best defense remains social distancing, hand washing hygiene, and keeping hands away from our faces…a mask helps to promote that. If mask wearing becomes conventional even beyond this pandemic, you have time to research and to find the best eco-safe filter in the meantime. Stay well!

    JoAnne E on
  • GIVEN the exceptional circumstances, I vote for the PM2.5 masks. A brand new global pandemic is one of those rare circumstances where disposability is a feature, not a bug. The fact that they’re ready to go is just icing.

    Anton on
  • Hi. As a member of a large sewing group that responded to a request from local doctor to make gowns, caps and masks for many health professionals in our area I have learned that masks are only to help protect the wearer. Two layers of closely woven cotton, cotton blend, or one of those fabrics combined with a silk layer were preferred. For the average person wearing a mask for shopping the two layers are sufficient, no need for a filter. For health care professionals who do not have appropriate PPE they may have no option but to wear a non-medical mask. In that case, non-woven material such as coffee filters and blue shop towels can be inserted to provide an additional protective layer.

    Linda Martin on

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