How to keep facemask clean and effective: top tips from experts

Estimated read time 10 min read

[vc_row el_class=”container section”][vc_column el_class=”row”][vc_row_inner el_class=”row”][vc_column_inner][expatmedia-landing-article title=”landing article”][/vc_column_inner][/vc_row_inner][vc_row_inner el_class=”col-md-8 “][vc_column_inner el_class=”col-md-8″][expatmedia-article-content body_text=”Tax-free commodities, a plethora of entertainment options and frequent sale seasons can be distracting to anyone who might want to save money in Dubai or anywhere in the UAE.

However, it is possible to live a financially fit life in the emirate, and save extra cash for your security. Here are top 15 tips:

15. Plan your yearly holidays so you can buy your airline tickets in advance. Airline tickets are usually cheaper when bought at least six months ahead of your travel date. Also, try booking online at around midnight when some airlines offer “midnight sale” on seats. You can also subscribe to airlines’ email alerts so you’ll always be the first to know of any promotions.

14. When sending a considerable sum of money home, don’t go with the flow. Exchange rates are usually high at mid-month or end of the month because this is when people receive their salaries and are likely to remit money. If possible, wait when the exchange rate dips (which means you get more peso for your dirham) before you send money to the Philippines.

13. Prefer to buy quality, used items that you need. You don’t have to spend a fortune on new furniture, unless you want to. There’s plenty advertised on online classifieds, or in second-hand stores in Dubai. Another Filipino favourite is the bi-monthly flea market in Safa Park.

12. If you don’t have accommodation or transportation paid for by your company, rent a place that is closer to your workplace. You can save time and money if you are spared a long commute.

11. Plan your trips using public buses or the Dubai Metro. The fares are a fraction of what you would spend compared to riding a taxi. If you must have a car, it is more economical to buy one in good condition (to spare you from maintenance woes) than lease one. However, make sure you have free parking space, and factor in yearly costs like vehicle registration renewal, vehicle insurance and toll fees.

10. Look for free entertainment. Beaches or parks are great places to unwind and entertain yourself with friends or family. You can also check out free shows and events at the malls, particularly during the shopping festivals.

9. If you are living alone or renting a shared apartment, it might be a good idea to buy cooked food in small portions from supermarkets and hypermarkets like Carrefour, Spinneys or New WestZone. You can ask for servings within your budget. This way you are saving time and effort from preparing your food.

8. If you must cook, include more vegetables on the menu. They’re cheaper, quicker to prepare and healthier, too.

7. Regularly check supermarkets and hypermarkets for special offers or deeply discounted prices on stocks for clearance. Most Filipinos head to Baqer Mohebi for discounted prices on boxes of chocolates to ship home, while New WestZone or Al Maya Lals are the go-to places for cheaper Philippine food items. For other commodities, check out three of the biggest hypermarkets in the country: Carrefour, Lulu and Geant.

6. Shop, dine or get service from establishments that offer loyalty points or rewards. Also check out offers on deal websites. There is usually a buy one get one offer on leisure trips, restaurant meals and other deals.

5. Get a pre-paid internet subscription on your smartphone that will allow you to use software like WhatsApp, Skype or Viber so you can call or message folks back home for free anytime, or when you are feeling homesick.

4. Try not to eat out frequently, but when you do, don’t be embarrassed to have your leftover food packed so you can eat it at home later.

3. If you can’t wait to do your shopping during sale season, shop at outlet stores instead (ask the store staff for the location). A more popular destination is the Outlet Mall, which houses all the outlet stores in one mall.

2. Don’t use a credit card, unless you can pay what you owe in full before interest accrues at the end of the month. But remember: It is always better to spend only what you have.

1. Save a portion of your salary. Always. The money you save now is not just for your retirement, but it can also be a much-needed fund for emergencies.” byline=”Expat Media” credits=”EXPAT MEDIA”]

How to keep facemask clean and effective: tips from experts

 

DUBAI – With the wearing of face masks now mandatory across the UAE and disposable masks in short supply, it is important to know how to keep your reusable facemask clean in order to maximize its effectiveness.

“Wearing facemasks is the new norm to slow the spread of viruses, particularly Covid-19, but people must know how to use and clean them properly,” said Justine Jabonero Contento of GAMÂ Design Studio, makers of custom washable facemasks.

Filipinos create the coolest PPE for frontliners to fight Covid-19 with style

Contento, a nurse turned entrepreneur, reiterated the importance of covering your face in public. “Wearing a mask protects others if you are an asymptomatic carrier of the virus, and it also protects you from those who are infected,” she told Expatmedia.net. “Never touch your facemask while wearing it because it might already have contaminants,” she warned.

Damodaran Sivakumar, Head of Production at laundry service provider 5àsec UAE, says following the dos and don’ts of maintaining facemask hygiene is very important.

“Using the same cloth mask daily without cleaning it will not shield you from the virus and may actually have the opposite effect,” Sivakumar said.

Here are their six key tips for maintaining the effectiveness of your fabric facemasks:

How often do you need to wash your fabric facemask?

Your facemask should be washed regularly. The virus may stay active on fabric for a long period of time, which makes it absolutely necessary to wash your facemask at least once a day. If you suspect that someone you have been in close contact with is infected, you should put the mask to wash immediately and use a fresh one, says Sivakumar. Apart from the virus, the masks also tend to collect any sweat, oil or makeup from skin, which may also affect your health.

What fabric is suitable for a facemask?

GAMÂ Design Studio recommends using a three-layer facemask with a combination of water-repellant fabric for the outside and soft, thin Neoprene fabric for the inner layer. These materials are effective in filtering out the virus as well as blocking any pathogens from entering. The lining must also be absorbent and soft. With the strict protocol of wearing the facemask while on the move, it is essential to be comfortable with your facemask and the fabric provides the right amount of breathability.

How should you handle your facemask after use?

Touching just one side of the garter of the facemask, take off your mask carefully and then place it in a basin with soap and water, says Contento. Let the mask soak while you are taking a shower as soon as you arrive home. This way, you are allowing the virus to decay. Do not let the mask come into contact with any other family member.

How can you disinfect cloth masks?

A machine wash at a high temperature with quality detergents is good enough to kill the virus. However, if you want to avoid running a machine load just for a single mask, you can also toss in your clothing items that you wore to step-out as well, says Sivakumar.

If you prefer to handwash your mask, let it soak in soap and water first or in hot water for at least 10 minutes. “A common hack is to hand wash it by singing Happy Birthday twice to make sure it is clean by 99.9 percent,” says Contento. Rinsing it thoroughly will also help to remove all the pathogens. Avoid using bleach completely as the constant smell can cause nausea and headaches.

What is the appropriate temperature to wash a facemask?

Viruses cannot withstand high temperatures, therefore, washing face masks at a temperature of more than 60 degrees help disinfect the mask. Since fabrics with dark colors fade after a couple of washed at high temperatures, it is advisable to make or buy the fabric mask in lighter shades, says Sivakumar.

How should a facemask be dried?

After washing your mask, it is best to dry it at a high temperature since heat also sanitizes the mask. For masks with a plastic filter and valve, you will need to be extra careful and air-dry or sun-dry them. A hairdryer can also be used as an easy and effective dryer, says Sivakumar. Sunlight is another excellent natural sanitizing agent. Since the starting temperature of an average household iron is 140 degrees Celsius, ironing the mask post-drying will provide an added measure to ensure that the virus is completely eliminated. PIA/Expat Media

 

Reach out to Gama Design Studio on instagram.com/gamahandcrafts or facebook.com/gamadesignstudio/


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