How Long Should the Elastic Be on a Face Mask?


Welcome to this article about how long should the elastic be on a face mask? There are many face mask sold on the market, but a lot of people would instead choose to make their masks. On the other hand, one of the questions that they encounter when making masks is regarding the length of the elastic for the ties or ear loops. The good thing is that you can cut elastics according to the length that you prefer for the masks.

How long should the elastic be on a face mask? There is no standard length followed for elastics when making face masks. A lot of people recommend 7 inches long for each ear loop and 23 inches long for head loops. You can choose longer elastic for making face masks with ties. The good thing about making your face mask is that you can adjust the length of the elastic according to the size of the wearer’s face so that the mask will fit perfectly.

This article does not contain any product recommendations. If you are interested in purchasing elastics for face masks, here’s our buying guide with products.

If you are faced with the dilemma of cutting the right length of elastic for your face mask, you have come to the right place. In this article, we will discuss the different lengths that you can have for elastics when designing your mask. Of course, you need to consider the wearer. Children’s face masks are smaller as compared to adults, so you need to make the elastic a bit shorter. Check out the rest of this article for more information and tips.

how long should the elastic be on a face mask

Image by Leohoho from Pixabay

How Long Should Elastics be for Adult Face Masks?

A lot of people consider that a 14 inches length of elastic is ideal for making adult face masks with ear loops. You need to equally cut the elastic into two, which shortens it to 7 inches for each ear loop. Of course, this will still have to depend on the shape and size of the face. The good thing is that you can easily adjust the length by sewing a bit of the elastic together or by using face mask adjusters. We have also written this article about the best face mask extender straps. Check out the article for more information on how to extend the ear loops of the mask so it will not hurt the back of your ears.

How to Make Adult Face Mask with 7 Inches Elastic

There are many tutorials and patterns that you can follow when making a face mask with elastic ear loops. You can easily substitute the length of the elastic. Sarah Maker shared a face mask tutorial on her website. She shows how to make an adult face mask with 7 inches elastic. Sarah uses two pieces of 7 inches long elastics, or she also recommends using up to 8 inches long for larger adult size. Check out the materials needed and step-by-step tutorial below.

Materials

  • 100% cotton fabric (rectangle 16″ long and 8.5″ wide)
  • Two pieces of each 7″ long and 1/8” wide flat elastic for ear loops
  • Fabric scissors
  • Ruler
  • Pins or clips
  • Sewing machine
  • Thread

Steps

  • Fold the fabric rectangle in half, with the right sides facing each other.
  • Sew along the top 8.5″ width edge, using a large 5/8″ seam allowance. Leave a 3″ – 4″ opening in the center of this seam to create an opening for the filter pocket, and to allow the mask to be turned right side out after sewing.
  • Next, turn the fabric so that the seam with the pocket opening is in the middle of one side. Press the seam to open using an iron.
  • Fold the excess seam allowance under, encasing the raw edge of the fabric. Topstitch or zigzag stitch along each side of this seam to finish the edge.
  • Pin one piece of elastic to each side of the mask, one end to the top corner and one end to the bottom corner of the fabric rectangle. It will create the ear loop once the mask is turned right side out and pleated.
  • Place the ends of the elastic about 1/4″ to 1/2“from the top and bottom corners of the fabric.
  • The piece of elastic itself will be sandwiched between the two layers of fabric. Once you turn the mask right side out, the elastic will be on the outside.
  • Repeat this process on each side to make two ear loops.
  • With a 3/8″ seam allowance, sew each side of the facemask—Backstitch over the elastic or fabric ties to secure them.
  • Turn the mask right side out and press with an iron.

✅ Video – Stitching 1/4 Inch Elastic Together At Ends

Laurie O’Meara shared the video below on her YouTube channel. She provided tips on how to stitch ¼ inch elastic together at ends. Stitching the elastic together can be difficult when running it under a sewing machine. To remedy this problem, she first put on glue to both edges of the elastic so that they stick together. The glue will hold the edges together, which makes it easier to sew the elastic using a sewing machine. Check out the video below for a demonstration.

How Long is the Elastic on a Child’s Mask?

For children ages two to four years old, a lot of people consider 5 inches long of elastic to be an idea for face masks. If your child has a wide face, you can cut longer elastic. For kids four years old and above, 6 inches or longer is ideal for making face masks. However, you need to consider that children have different facial structures. Older children can have a smaller face and vice versa. When making face masks for children, you can always measure the fit of the mask on their faces for easy adjustment, or you can also use an adjuster that you can purchase online.

How to Make Children Face Mask Using 6 Inches Elastic

Remona shared the tutorial below on her website. It shows how to make children face mask using 6 inches elastic. It is an easy project to make, which takes less than ten minutes. She also provides various options for both fabric size and the length of the elastic for different group ages. Check out the tutorial below for more information.

Materials

  • For ages 2-4: 2 pieces of 4″x”6 fabric and two pieces of 1/8″ wide elastic that measures 5″ long
  • For ages 4-12: 2 pieces of 5″x7″ fabric and two pieces of 1/8″ elastic that measures 6″ long

Steps

  • Pin elastic about 1/2″ from corners of the short side of the front side of one fabric.
  • Now lay the other piece of the fabric right side facing down and pin all the way around.
  • Sew both pieces of fabric together all the way around. Leave about 2″ open so that you can turn it inside out.
  • Turn inside out. Fold-down the opening and top sew closed.
  • Now, do two pleats in the center of the sides of the mask. The pleats are about 1″ each.
  • Pin the pleats and sew sides.

✅ Video – DIY Face Masks with Elastic Loops for Kids

Owl Be Sewing shared the video below on her YouTube channel. She demonstrates how to make a DIY face mask for kids. To make the masks more attractive and appealing to children, she uses fabrics with fun characters. Check out the video below for the visual demonstration. You can also check out this article about how to attach an elastic cord to a face mask. We have discussed the different methods for attaching elastic into the casing of the mask.

How Long Should Elastics be for Face Masks with Head Loops?

Head loops are preferred to obtain a tighter fit. Make the elastic about 23 inches long. You can also adjust it to be shorter or longer according to the size of the face. If you are making the mask for yourself or your family members, you should let them try the mask first so that you can make proper adjustments. You can choose to tie the elastics over the head for easy adjustment, or you can also make it as loops that secure at the back of the head. There are many kinds of elastic that you can use for head loops. You can choose from the different available widths. You can also check out this article about the best width of elastic for a face mask. We have shared different widths of elastic that you can consider when making face masks.

How to Make Face Mask with Elastic Head Loops

If you prefer to have elastic head loops for your mask rather than ear loops, you can check out various tutorials online. Roxanne shared the tutorial below on her website. She shows how to make a face mask with elastic head loops. Roxanne is using 32 inches of narrow elastic of the head loops. Check out the materials needed and the steps on making the mask below.

Materials

  • 100% woven cotton, light to medium weight, like quilting cotton, 1/4 yard of 44″ wide fabric
  • 32″ narrow elastic for head strap version (1/8″, 1/4″, or round elastic ~1/16-1/8″)
  • Pattern (here)
  • Thread

Steps

  • Cut out two mask pattern pieces, one in the outer fabric, one for the lining, transferring the pleat markings (dots) onto the right side of each fabric piece.
  • Place the mask pieces right sides together. Using a 1/4″ seam allowance, sew around the perimeter, leaving a ~2.5″ opening unsewn.
  • Turn the mask right-side out, pushing out all corners, and topstitch 1/8″ from the edge around the entire perimeter.
  • Using the dots from the pattern, make three horizontal pleats as marked on the pattern. Press in place, pin, and sew along each side edge to secure the pleats.
  • Fold each side 1/2″ from the edge and sew the channel for the elastic, using a 1/8″ seam allowance.
  • Keep the elastic in one length, and thread one end up one channel, and then down through the other.
  • Tie the ends loosely into a knot, and pull the knot back into one of the channels. If you are making it for someone else, leave this knot tied loosely.

How Many Centimeters Long Should Elastics be on Face Masks?

A lot of people consider that elastics should be 18 to 20 cm long for men, 15 to 16 cm long for women, and 12 to 14 centimeters long for children. It is for making ear loops. However, this is not always the standard length because it will still have to depend on the size of the person’s face. When making face masks for your family members, you can always measure their faces for the proper fit. You can also check out this article about the best colored elastics for face masks. We have shared a list of the most colorful elastics that you can use when making fashionable and stylish face masks.

Related Questions

Can I Use Fabric Instead of Elastics?

Yes, you can use strips of fabric when as an alternative to elastics when making face masks. You can use the fabric as ties or for over the head loops. We have also written this article about how to make face masks without elastics. Check out the article to discover more alternatives that you can use instead of elastics. We have shared many choices that you can choose from.

How do Clean Elastics on Face Masks?

The best way to wash the elastics on the face masks is to rub a small amount of detergent or soap on the elastic loops. Use a toothbrush and scrub the elastic gently to remove dirt, dust, and grime without damaging the elastic. Rinse well. Aside from washing the main fabric of the mask, it is also vital to wash the elastics loops to make sure that they are clean.

What is the Best Way to Sew Elastic on Fabric?

Sew the elastic into the fabric of the mask by creating a casing and threading the edges of the elastic into it. Stitch the elastic to the fabric with a zigzag stitch. Make sure that you securely sew the elastic into the fabric so that it will not easily tear off after many uses.

Conclusion

You have reached the end of this article about how long the elastic should be on a face mask. The good thing about using elastic is that you can easily cut through when making adjustments. As we have discussed earlier, there is no standard measurement on how long the elastic should be. Make your best judgment when cutting the length to make sure that the mask perfectly fits your face. You can check out the link at the top of this article for a list of the best elastics that you can purchase online. Thank you for reading.

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