These Face Mask Alternatives Are Comfy, Lightweight, and Galaxy-Inspired
by Caroline Harris
Image Credits: Amazon/Doerix
My mom is always ahead of the trends. She was buying tie-dye loungewear and comfy joggers before they sold out everywhere, and her buying history often anticipates tomorrow’s headlines. So when my mom started talking about face mask alternatives and, more specifically, neck gaiters, I knew she was on to something. For the past month, my mom has been wearing Doerix Galaxy Neck Gaiters, which she owns in every color and which are now a No. 1 Amazon best-seller in the category women’s balaclavas. What can I say? Mama knows best.
These Amazon neck gaiters are lightweight and breathable, meaning you can wear them comfortably for hours on end. The polyester microfiber material wicks away sweat from your skin and dries quickly, while the design is multi-purpose (you can wear it as a neck gaiter, beanie or head wrap). Also amazing: These neck gaiters feature a four-way stretch, delivering a snug fit for many sized faces.
Now, everyone in my family is wearing these Amazon face mask alternatives on repeat during outdoor exercise. Clearly, we’re not alone in our enthusiasm—these neck gaiters have dozens of five-star reviews, with Amazon shoppers declaring how much they prefer the innovative style to more traditional face coverings. As one Amazon shopper wrote, “I’ve been using this bandana instead of a cloth mask during the COVID-19 pandemic and it’s incredible. I hate surgical-style masks because of how hot and confining they are, so this neck gaiter has been hugely helpful.”
You may still be wondering, why neck gaiters? In addition to having cooling properties, neck gaiters are beloved by hikers, cyclists, and runners, predating the COVID-19 pandemic as a versatile fitness accessory. While cloth face masks work well for walking and more sedentary activities, the design can be frustrating during fast-moving activities like running. When your cloth face mask is looped around your neck, it flops up and down on your chest with every stride—and the faster you move, the more the flopping increases. (True story: The other day, I set out on a five-mile run with a cloth face mask, only to turn back home and grab my neck gaiter instead.)
What’s more, cloth face masks can be difficult to breathe in, especially when you’re panting heavily. That’s where neck gaiters come in, resting comfortably around your neck and face with minimal flopping and ample breathability. As one happy customer working at a distribution center wrote, “I do not feel suffocated or overwhelmed while wearing this neck gaiter at work. The material is soft and silky, and it doesn’t make you hot.”
Neck gaiters are also a realistic option for near-continuous wear. I currently live in the suburbs of San Francisco, where you’re now required to wear a mask or face covering when you come within 30 feet of anyone who isn’t part of your household. Because of their absence of elastic bands, neck gaiters are quick to slip on and off, which is especially helpful when a person unexpectedly pops up behind you during outdoor exercise. Bonus: The lack of elastic bands means freedom for your ears—say “goodbye” to pinching.
Looking for a cute and comfy face covering to wear on loop? Meet your match with the Doerix Galaxy Neck Gaiters, which come in several starry prints and can be yours for as little as $14.
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