Do you need to keep wearing a mask even after getting the Covid-19 vaccine? The answer is yes. Even after receiving the vaccine, it is important to continue taking all recommended precautions for unvaccinated people, including wearing a well-fitting mask. Until more information is available, the CDC recommends wearing a mask in public, regardless of whether you are vaccinated or not. The most effective masks are made of multiple layers of tightly woven fabric, such as cotton.
A layered mask will prevent more droplets from passing through or escaping from the mask. It is important to ensure that the masks fit well to the contours of the face to prevent air leaks around the edges of the masks. Masks should fit snugly over the nose, mouth and chin, leaving no gaps. You should feel warm air coming in through the front of the mask when you breathe out.
KN95 and medical masks provide the next highest level of protection after N95s. N95s should be reserved for healthcare providers and those with weakened immune systems or at greater risk of becoming seriously ill. If you are using a KN95 or N95, make sure it fits and closes well close to your face. Face protectors are not recommended as an alternative to masks because it is not clear how much protection they provide.
However, if you must use a face shield instead of a mask, choose one that wraps around the sides of the face and extends below the chin. It is important to remember that even after being vaccinated against Covid-19, you still have public health work to do. By wearing a mask after vaccination, you will reduce the chances of accidentally transmitting the highly transmissible Delta variant to those who are not yet vaccinated (including those who cannot safely receive a dose). And of course, every time you touch a mask you've used, whether you take it off or put it on, you should wash your hands to make sure you remove any germs that may have been on the outside of the mask.