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Join our face mask challenge: Wear a mask for 4 hours

School kids are about to be required to wear a face covering all day, so let's test out the most comfortable options.

Many of us only wear a face mask for 30-40 minutes at a time in a store, so we might not realize the difficulties of wearing a face covering for up to eight hours. With school starting up in August, teachers and school kids will be required to wear face masks all day.

We have a lineup of testers in a range of ages but we are also throwing it out to you, dear readers, to tell us what it’s like to wear a mask for at least four hours and what brands work better than others.

Students wearing masks take their seats in this image from a Pinellas County Schools video showing how classrooms could look when K-12 campuses reopen amid the coronavirus pandemic. Experts say parents should talk honestly to their children about difficulties they may face when returning to school this year. [ Pinellas County Schools ]

We gave our testers three masks: a disposable one, a soft cloth one in the $5-$10 range and the more fashionable ones, some of them created by local artists. We won’t require you to do the same. Just pick masks you have on hand, then wear one for at least four hours and share your experience.

We know that with some, your glasses will get fogged up, and you might get pimples nicknamed “maskne.” But the trade-off for comfort can be that some are safer than others.

Disney World has banned the super comfortable “neck gaiters” as a face covering. The tube-style face scarves, and also home-made triangle-shaped bandanas, are banned because CDC recommendations are for “at least two layers of breathable material” that completely cover the nose and mouth to stop droplets.

If you or anyone in the family wants to join the challenge, take some time over the next few days to test drive some face coverings. This is about schools, so this homework has a deadline. Send in your mask review by the end of the day Tuesday Aug. 4.

Email your thoughts to readerreview@tampabay.com. Include contact information in case we have questions and don’t forget to let us know the brand name or where people can buy the mask you tested. Feel free to send pictures as well.

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Tampa Bay Times coronavirus coverage

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