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How is a Surgical Face Mask Made?

There are several methods for making a 3 layers disposable face mask, the most common being the 100% automatic production line.

The mask is made in 5 steps:

  1. Assembly of non-woven layers
  2. Insertion of the Nose Bridge
  3. Folding
  4. Cut
  5. Ear Loops

1) Assembly of non-woven layers

 Assembly of non-wovens layers for surgical mask

The non-woven fabrics rolls are unrolled and assembled to form the 3 layers of the mask.

The front face is the visible part of the face mask, often coloured blue, it is called Spun bond and allows resistance to projections.

The inner layer next to the skin is also a Spun bond, which has the property of allowing your skin to breathe, it is soft to the touch and hypo-allergenic (II and IIR).

The middle layer is the filter, the most important part of the mask: the Meltblown. It is this material that prevents viruses and bacteria from passing through. It is found in many products such as disposable nappies/diapers, vacuum bags, hood filters, etc.

3 layers face mask machine

It is important to have an effective filter to ensure your safety, which can sometimes be overlooked by some manufacturers in order to reduce the production cost.

2) Nose Bridge Insertion

Disposable Surgical Face Mask Nose Bridge

Like the non-woven material used, the nose bridge is delivered to the machine on a roll and cut to size.

Disposable Surgical Face Mask Nose Bridge

As it moves though the machine, the inner layer covers the edges of the top and bottom of each mask . Using a fast ultrasound weld directly to the mask, this leaves a small pocket just big enough for the nose bridge to be cut and inserted inside automatically.

3) Folding

Folding Disposable Mask

The mask layers are accordion-folded to allow for size adjustment on the face and ultrasonically welded.

The height of the mask is approximately 9.5 cm.

4) Cut

Cut Surgical Face Mask

Once the shape of the mask is made, it is cut by a blade. The size should be 17.5cm wide.

5) Ear Loops

Ear Loops Surgical Mask

Now that the masks are ready, all that remains is to tie rubber bands to the sides.

These ear clips are cut and then ultrasonically welded by a second machine.

To know more about the machine please check this article What Machine is used to make a Surgical Face Mask?.

The production rate is one mask per second, potentially making it possible to manufacture 1 million masks per month with a single production line!

Disposable mask production line

The disposable face mask is ready to be used!

Ultrasonic Welding

Ultrasound welding is essential for making masks: there are no flames, the high speed vibrations melt the plastic (these are the small dots that you see on the masks) and allow a perfectly strong and reliable seal.

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