Face masks and working from home – maintaining your beard during Omicron
Covid-19 has changed many things about our daily lives, particularly the way we work and connect with others. As Omicron spreads many people now work remotely or are encouraged to do so. Those still in the office or working in public-facing roles are likely to be wearing a face mask all day. We are connecting with others using our phone or zoom rather than in person.
This raises a couple of questions. Firstly, how do I keep my beard looking good while wearing a face mask all day. Secondly, if most people aren’t going to see my beard anyway why put the effort in?
Let’s be frank (sorry Frank). Typical face masks are not kind on beards. They crease and push them out of shape. They can irritate the hair and skin. Plus, they look downright ridiculous. To keep your beard looking its best, while providing the protection you need, invest in a good quality beard face mask (or two). A decent beard face mask will maintain the shape of your beard, feel comfortable, provide good breathability and help keep you safe. Bonus points for looking styley and professional.
There are a couple of things that you want to think about when choosing a beard face mask. First up, think about its material. Cotton breathes and is comfortable to have against your skin and hair. Man-made materials don’t breath and can cause irritation. Next, take note of how many layers the mask has. Strive to get a mask that has at least 3 layers plus a filter (covid19.govt.nz has some useful guidelines on this). These layers will help contain respiratory droplets and a disposable filter such as a PM 2.5 will improve a mask's filtration effectiveness, especially against the smallest aerosol particles.
Fit is crucial. Look out for features that will make the mask as comfortable as possible to wear such as metal nose strip, adjustable straps and extended length. Lastly, if you’re going to wear a mask it may as well look half decent. There are lots of good-looking options on the market to choose from. If you can’t decide, get a black or other plain colour one for work and another one that has a bit more colour for social occasions. We might be biased, but we think our beard face masks tick all these boxes.
Why bother looking after my face mane if I’m working remotely or wearing a beard face mask all day?
There are a number of reasons to do so. Keeping up regular beard maintenance of washing, applying beard oil and combing will help your beard remain healthy and strong. Do you want to be itching that beard every 5 seconds during a zoom call, or worse, getting a case of the dreaded beardruff?
If you are required to wear a mask at work there will be times when you can take it off such as breaks or going outside. Make sure your beard is looking its best for these moments.
Zoom calls have replaced face to face meetings for many industries so it is important to present yourself as if the meeting was taking place in person. Feeling good about yourself often translates to a more confident outward appearance, and having a great looking beard is a key part of this.
Looking after your mental health is vital and many people can feel down or have a sense of loss because they are not around people as much. Keeping habits such as your regular beard routine will help provide normality in a time of change and uncertainty.
Do you have any suggestions about maintaining your beard during Omicron? We would love to hear them.