All UC Davis Employees Eligible for COVID-19 Vaccine | Students on April 15: Learn more

Face Coverings

photo of face covering

Wear cloth face coverings inside and outside where others are likely to be around.

Face coverings must be worn by students, academics, staff and visitors at all UC Davis locations. For indoor locations, the only exceptions are while eating or drinking or in private spaces such as dorm rooms, single-occupancy offices, showers and the like. For outdoor spaces, face coverings should be worn when maintaining 6 feet of distance from others is not feasible.

For those lacking a suitable face covering of their own, UC Davis is providing a limited supply of face coverings.

Putting on a face covering

  • Avoid touching the front of the face covering once it's on.
  • Wash hands or use hand sanitizer prior to handling the face covering.
  • Ensure the face-covering fits over the nose and under the chin.
  • Situate the face-covering properly with nose wire snug against the nose (where applicable).
  • Tie straps behind the head and neck or loop around the ears.

Taking off a face covering

  • Do not touch your eyes, nose, or mouth when removing the face covering.
  • When taking off the face covering, loop your finger into the strap and pull the strap away from the ear, or untie the straps.
  • Wash hands or use hand sanitizer immediately after removing.

Care, storage and laundering

  • Keep face coverings stored in a paper bag when not in use.
  • Cloth face coverings should not be used more than one day at a time and must be washed after use. Cloth face coverings should be properly laundered with regular detergent before first use and after each subsequent day’s use.
  • Face coverings should be replaced immediately if soiled, damaged (e.g. ripped, punctured) or visibly contaminated.
  • Disposable face coverings must not be used for more than one day and should be placed in the trash after you return home for the day or if it is soiled, damaged (e.g., stretched ear loops, torn or punctured material) or visibly contaminated.

How to improve the effectiveness of your face covering

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention off these updates for how you can improve the fit of your face covering. These two general principles can be applied to all types of effective face coverings:

  1. Make sure your face covering fits snugly, without any gaps to allow air or respiratory droplets to get through.
  2. Select a face covering that has layers to keep your respiratory droplets in and others' respiratory droplets out.

The CDC offers these additional tips and you can also read additional details:

  • DO choose a face covering with a nose wire
  • DO use a mask fitter or brace to prevent air from leaking around the edges of the face covering
  • DO check that your face covering fits snugly over your nose, mouth, and chin
  • DO add layers of material — with either a cloth face covering that has multiple layers of material or by wearing a disposable mask under a cloth face covering
  • DO NOT combine two disposable masks when "double masking"
  • DO NOT combine a KN95 mask with any other mask. Use only one KN95 at a time
Type and Intended Use of Face Coverings
Type Cloth Face Coveringcloth face covering Disposable Mask disposable mask Medical-Grade Surgical Mask surgical mask N95 Respiratorn95 mask
Description Home-made or commercially manufactured face coverings that are washable and help contain wearer’s respiratory emissions Commercially manufactured masks that help contain wearer’s respiratory emissions FDA-approved masks to protect the wearer from large droplets and splashes; helps contains wearer’s respiratory emissions Provide effective respiratory protection from airborne particles and aerosols; helps contain wearer’s respiratory emissions
Intended Use Required for campus community use in non-healthcare settings (office spaces, general research/work settings, shops, community areas where 6-feet physical distancing cannot be consistently maintained. Must be replaced daily. (While likely necessary for ingress and egress, not required when working alone in an office). These masks are reserved for healthcare workers and other approved areas with task-specific hazards.