Latest Post

Demba Ba tells Real Madrid how to get the best out of Eden Hazard after ex-Chelsea star’s struggles How to ensure the success of your CDP initiative | Online Sales Guide Tips I HATE Spending Money: How to Spend Less and Save More | Online Sales Guide Tips

The KF94 is a high-quality mask that folds flat and is made in Korea. It is designed specifically for the consumer market. The KF stands for “Korean filter,” and the 94 means it filters 94 percent of particles. The masks are heavily regulated in Korea, which lowers the risk of counterfeits. However, some fake masks made in China may be labeled KF94, so shoppers still need to do their homework.

The mask market is particularly tricky for parents trying to find masks for children. No N95 mask has been approved for children, so any mask that claims to be an N95 for kids is a fake. However, N95s do come in S/M sizes that might work for some older children. KN95 and KF94 masks have styles made for children, so once you find one, you need to go through the same vetting process that you would use for an adult mask, using the links below.

Big retailers like Home Depot and Lowes typically work directly with manufacturers approved by NIOSH or their distributors, so if you find an N95 mask in a major retail store you can be confident you’re getting the real thing. It’s a good idea to check manufacturer websites to see where they sell their products and who their authorized distributors are, Dr. McCullough said. 3M has a dedicated spot on its website to help consumers spot fake masks.

Finding a reliable mask on Amazon is trickier because you’ll see legitimate masks mixed in with counterfeits, although the differences won’t alway be obvious. If you must use Amazon, try to shop directly in the on-site stores of mask makers like 3M or Kimberly-Clark. (You can usually find a link to a maker’s online store right below a product name.)

If you’re buying a KF94 on Amazon, look closely at the packaging to make sure it’s made in Korea and includes the required labeling (see below for more details). Aaron Collins, an engineer who routinely tests masks and who has gained a YouTube following as “Mask Nerd,” recommends buying KF94s from Korean beauty product importers like Be Healthy or KMact. Once you learn the names of a few KF94 manufacturers, you can try to find their websites to learn where they are sold. For instance, Happy Life lists its five U.S. distributors on its home page.

Mr. Collins may be best known for his list of children’s masks. While there is no N95 mask for kids approved in the United States, mask makers in China and Korea have created KN95s and KF94s for children, including some with child-friendly colors and prints. Mr. Collins created a video “primer for parents” about finding a high-quality mask for kids that has more than 100,000 views.

“I had retired from mask testing,” Mr. Collins said, noting that he doesn’t receive any compensation for his work. “But I came out of retirement to do the kids video. The only place I’ve seen a list of test data is unfortunately me.”

Wirecutter, a product review site owned by The New York Times, has a guide for buying medical masks, one for buying children’s masks and a list of 12 red flags that might signal your mask is a counterfeit.

It’s not easy, but the C.D.C. has a few lists you can use to confirm a mask has been vetted. A note of caution: If you don’t find a particular mask, make sure you’ve looked it up the correct way. For instance, a Gerson N95 mask won’t be found under the letter “G.” It’s listed under “L” because the full name of the company that makes it is Louis M. Gerson.

For N95 masks, go to the C.D.C.’s alphabetical list of NIOSH-approved respirators. You can also look up the TC approval number using the certified equipment list.

For KN95 masks, you can use two checklists from the Food and Drug Administration. The F.D.A. created these lists early in the pandemic, when the agency issued an emergency use authorization that allowed health workers to use KN95 masks because of a shortage of N95s. Now that the N95 supply is adequate, the agency has revoked the authorization for these workers, but other people can still use KN95s. While the list is now a bit outdated, finding your mask on it adds reassurance that it’s less likely to be counterfeit — with the caveat that there’s no longer official U.S. oversight for any of these firms.

Use this F.D.A. list to find KN95 masks made in China, and this list for KN95 masks made in other countries.