As I progress in researching and thinking about how would the mask look like when designing it, I began to think what kind of mask my group and I will be making, what quantities will it have? What will be used for? and How could I improve my mask from others.
This week when my group and I were writing our memo, we struggled and debated on what type of mask are we designing, will the mask be used for dust only, for 3rd world countries, construction, chemical, allergies, or medical use? We decided if we are going to sell and test the mask, we should probably test with people in the U.S and around us so we can know if our product is efficient. Therefore, we reached to a final decision that the face mask will be used for any kind; focusing mainly of heavy dangerous particles in air, but our background will be about the yellow dust in Asian countries.
After figuring out what will the mask be used for, the next step would be how will it look like. As I was searching for a potential market for Memo 1, I found Home Depot and Walgreen would be a great business to deal with, I looked at the design they are selling and just by looking at the images of the design, both masks from Home Depot and Walgreen are different from each other; each one had its positive and its negative. According to Home Depot which sells a Washable/Reusable Dust, Pollen & Germ Mask for $11.99 it has been rated 4.6 yet some people rated it as 2 due to its inability to breath from it while Walgreen sells a 3M Particulate Respirator face mask for $16.99, many people said it was an effective mask, yet some disagreed said that it has a bad smell and it can fall easily from the face because of its loose materials and strings.
To start thinking about designing a face mask, we must consider people’s view and opinion on them because they will be the potential customers and we want to create a mask that could meet all the criteria, from comfort zone to pretty design. The reviews from Home Depot and and Walgreen were helpful to know which part worked in the mask and which didn’t and what part of the face mask would the people want to change. For example, in the interviews that my group and I did, some people want to change the filter, make it lighter, cheaper, and can be suitable for different types, therefore we must consider people’s opinion on that. Other than considering the people’s opinion on a face mask, we must take in consideration the scientists and researchers opinion and results on their past face mask invention because they did more research and experiments and they know what works and what doesn’t. According to Health and Safety in Shanghai.com, Wikimedia publisher mentions “It is important to remember however, that the mask will only be effective if it fits your face tightly to avoid any air leaking around the mask, and it must be comfortable and easy to breathe with” (“Find an N95 Mask in Shanghai”). After doing research and experiments, the scientist, engineering, and designers found the product must fit to the face so small particles will not go inside the lungs.
Personally I keep thinking about the engineering of the mask more than its medical use, but making a face mask that could fit the face had medical in it too so polluted air won’t go inside the lungs. Making a mask that has a good filter can not get polluted air to the lungs has some bio med in it too.
The reviews from Home Depot and Walgreen, the interviews, and the website gave me any idea about the quantities of the mask and its effectiveness. When my group and I start designing a mask we will take in consideration of these reviews and comments to make a better quality of face mask, and I will help them to make the mask better because of the researches and the information I gathered about better face mask.