21 Workout-Friendly Face Masks to Stay Safe & Comfortable While You Sweat
Sweating under a face mask certainly isn't ideal, but there are lots of great options out there that'll make moving around outside a bit more comfortable.
While hope is on the horizon, the simple truth is that face masks are still saving lives. Vaccinations are increasing, but we can't let our guard down just yet. Now that we’re all clear on that, let’s get down to the important matter at hand: finding a mask that looks good, keeps you and others around you protected, and is comfortable to wear while you’re working out (or, just generally living your active, sweaty life).
Luckily, you have a lot of options. With the face mask market booming (and copious choices to help you put your personality on display), select brands and manufacturers have set out to create ones particularly suited to handle heavy breathing, whether it be while running, working out, or during particularly boisterous fire pit hangs. To make it easy to track down the right one for you, we've pulled together 21 exceptionally comfortable workout-worthy masks that'll last through whatever you throw at them.
Vistaprint—which typically makes physical marketing materials for small businesses—has made a hard pivot to face masks. The company has an extensive selection of designs to pick from, but its masks are also notable in that they’re made from moisture-wicking fabric to keep you as dry as possible even when working up a sweat. They’re also equipped with a replaceable filter system that lets you slip in disposable protection filters if you’d like. Beyond that, they’ve got comfy adjustable latex-free straps and are machine washable.
A company that developed out of a necessity for better and more affordable PPE as a result of COVID, Blue Bear has honed its mask offerings to be both extremely effective and exceedingly comfortable. Its ProSport Mask is particularly well suited for staying safe during labor-intensive activities thanks to its lightweight and breathable material, adjustable ear loops, and a replaceable Nanotech filter that adds an extra layer of protection. And if you're curious just how comfortable they are, a cursory perusal of customer reviews should provide all the evidence you need.
This premium mask from Wolford is double-layered to provide extra protection while remaining extra breathable and ready to handle your huffing and puffing. It also features aluminum nose wires for a custom fit over your nose, and a water-repellent finish so you aren’t dealing with a soggy rag on your face after a big workout.
Made in the EU, these comfortable and slick masks are treated with VirafOff, a biocide that's designed to reduce the need to wash them. It's also equipped with replaceable three-layer nanofilters, an exhalation valve (which forces air to pass through the filter when exhaled) for easy breathing, and is fashioned with a special fluorine-free water-repellent fabric that removes moisture from inside the mask.
Bandanas may not compete in triathlons, but if they did they’d look a lot like this mask. The Buff is fashioned from Repreve performance polyester microfiber (made from recycled materials), features 4-way stretch to hold its shape and move with you, boasts a UPF (ultraviolet protection factor) of 50, and helps manage moisture by drying quickly. Plus, it also functions as a hairband or helmet liner, should the need arise.
Made from a single layer knit, washable quick drying fabric, this mask boasts a double-strap design that wraps around the back of your head (your ears will thank you), and a seamless construction that ensures it stays snug across the unique contours of your face while you're moving.
Athleta makes super-comfy everyday activewear, so it stands to reason that its face masks are perfect for being able to move and breathe easy while you’re breaking a sweat. These are made from a lightweight polyester/spandex material that promotes air flow while keeping you and those around you protected.
Koral, which typically produces colorful and stylish activewear and leggings, has come out with its own face mask—specifically designed to keep you safe while breaking a sweat. They’re made using Koral’s antimicrobial performance fabrics and boast the same benefits of much of its other activewear: fast-drying tech, breathability, UV protection, and a soft lycra stretch for a secure fit.
Carbon38 has applied its activewear expertise to a nifty new face mask, which is equipped with a multilayered filtration system and fast-drying antibacterial fabric to keep you cool and safe. Plus, it comes with a handy small laundry bag so machine-washing in between workouts is a breeze.
Under Armour has applied its expertise at producing high-performance fitness gear to face masks, with arguably the best option for anyone looking to workout while staying covered. Each one is made from UA’s signature high-performance materials, and is structured in such a way that it sits up and off the face and lips. It sports a water-resistant outer shell, an anti-microbial treatment on the inner layer, and—best of all—has an inner lining made of UA’s “Iso-Chill” fabric, which feels cool to the touch as long as you wear it.
It may look like your average bandana, but this thing has some nifty hidden tech in it. For one, it has an embedded nanofiber filter that helps block airborne contaminants and the whole thing is fashioned from breathable INEXSHELL cotton (and equipped with a special antimicrobial treatment). Plus, it also features an adjustable nose bridge to help it stay better in place on your face.
These soft, washable cotton Hanes masks are super comfortable while providing three layers of coverage, and feature the brand’s Cool Comfort moisture-wicking fabric so that you can dominate your workouts without succumbing to a serious sweatfest on your face.
If you’re going to wash your face mask a lot (and you should, especially if you’re sweating in it frequently), Prime Layers has your back. Its masks are made from double-layered breathable chambray cotton to stand up to lots of washing, and feature comfy straps and an adjustable metal nose to keep comfortable fully covered without feeling smothered.
These ultra-comfortable, quick-drying masks from Onzie are made from upcycled fabric the brand typically uses in its yoga clothing. That means you’re getting multi-layered protection with full-flex Spandex technology which allows for added stretch and breathability.
Everlane’s fabric masks are made from double-layer knit cotton and lycra, and—much like Everlane t-shirts—are exceptionally comfortable. They may not be as a high performance or tech-forward as some of the others on this list, but they’re still a great option for lighter workouts or activity. Also, for every 100% Human product sold, Everlane donates 10% of the sale to the ACLU.
If you’re looking for a face-covering that also protects your from the sun, this neck gaiter is right up your alley. It provides an ultraviolet protection factor of 50, has “antimicrobial enhancements” to prevent odors, and offers a special water-activated cooling feature that cools you down within 30 seconds if you start to overheat.
If you’ve ever had the pleasure of wearing Outdoor Voices, you know how exceptionally comfortable its clothes are (looking at you, CloudKnit hoodie). So, it stands to reason that its face masks are, too. They’re made from the brand’s signature textured compression fabric, are remarkably breathable, and have earned rave reviews from customers.
Uniqlo is now making face masks with its ultra-breathable and super-comfy AIRism material, which is great at wicking away moisture. It's constructed with three layers, the first made of AIRism fabric, the second with a washable, built-in filter, and a third that features its special AIRism Mesh, which blocks UV rays.
Yes, Casetify is best known for making standout phone cases, but it's extended its protection prowess to face masks for obvious reasons. Its reusable washable masks (which come in packs of 1-100) are made from breathable cotton, and arrive with two disposable filter inserts to keep you extra protected (you can purchase more if you'd like). Plus, for every mask purchased, Casetify donates a mask to frontline workers.
Designed specifically for athletes in mind, this robust face covering features a patent-pending "Quick-Flip" technology that allows you to sip from a water bottle (or remove your mouthguard) without removing the mask or even touching your face. Plus it's fully adjustable to ensure a comfortable and secure fit, and also boasts moisture control tech to help wick away sweat.
Buck Mason’s masks are made from a polyester/rayon blend and—like much of what the brand produces—are built to last. They’re super comfortable (with tie-on straps to keep your ears free), and sport a microbial outer coating that’ll last for 30 washes.