How to Make Your Own Cold Weather Face Mask

Written by elizabeth tumbarello
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How to Make Your Own Cold Weather Face Mask
Recycle a wool sweater into a cold weather face mask. (sweater image by dinostock from

The misconception that humans lose 70 per cent of their body heat from their head is just that -- a popular myth. The human head accounts for about 10 per cent of the body and, when exposed, accounts for about a 10 per cent heat loss. Regardless of the amount lost, every bit of heat is crucial in cold weather. A homemade, cold weather heat loss face mask will reduce the amount of skin exposed and the amount of heat lost from the body. You can create one by purposely recreating a common laundry "mistake," performed on a recycled thrift store wool sweater (or one of your old discarded wool sweaters).

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

Things you need

  • Wool sweater
  • Washing machine
  • Detergent
  • Jeans
  • Dryer
  • Measuring tape
  • Scissors
  • Marker
  • Tapestry needle
  • Wool yarn

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  1. 1

    Put a 100 per cent wool sweater into your washing machine with hot water and soap. Run the load with a couple pairs of jeans or other tough clothing items added, to increase the agitation.

  2. 2

    Dry the sweater using the hot heat setting. This process "felts" the sweater; that is, it causes the fibres to lock together and form a denser material.

  3. 3

    Lay the felted sweater on a flat surface.

  4. 4

    Measure the circumference of your face and head. Measure from the tip of your crown to the base of your neck.

  5. 5

    Draw an oblong semicircle on the torso of the sweater, resembling the shape of a beanie hat or ski-mask. Make sure the width of the semicircle is equal to half the circumference of your face and head, plus one inch. Make sure it is long enough to reach from your crown to the base of your neck, plus one inch.

  6. 6

    Cut your pattern out of the sweater. Cut through both the front and back layers of the torso. Since the sweater is felted it will not unravel.

  7. 7

    Thread a tapestry needle with wool yarn. "Whip stitch" around the semicircle, securing the two sweater pieces together. To form a whip stitch, bring the needle up through the fabric. Pull the yarn around to the same side you started on and push up through the fabric again. Repeat. NOTE: Leave the bottom flattened edge of the semicircle open. This is how you will put the mask on.

  8. 8

    Try on the mask. Use a felt tip marker to mark the approximate location of your eyes. Mark the location of your nose.

  9. 9

    Take the mask off and carefully cut around the marks you made, creating eye and nose holes in the mask.

  10. 10

    Run the mask through the washer and dryer one more time as you did to prepare the sweater. This felts the yarn used for the stitches, ensuring an even more secure bond.

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