Masks are no longer mandatory in indoor public spaces. However, they may still be required in some vulnerable settings such as hospitals and long-term care facilities.

Wearing a mask can help stop the spread of COVID-19 and other respiratory illnesses. Think about your risk when choosing what kind of mask to wear. There are two types of masks available:

Non-medical masks (2-3 layer cloth or disposable general purpose) may be used where masks are required and when distancing cannot be maintained from those not in your steady contacts. Masks should be well-fitted without gaps and fit properly over the nose and mouth.

Medical masks (surgical, N95 and KN95) should be used when there is a high level of community transmission or when there is prolonged contact with others (e.g. on public transit). These are especially important for people at risk of severe illness and for those providing care to positive or suspected cases of COVID-19.

Face Mask Guidance (PDF)

Last updated December 2021

How to wear a mask or face covering

There are two categories of masks: medical and non-medical (or cloth face covering). These masks and face coverings can help stop us from unknowingly spreading viruses.


Masks should:

  • fit securely to the head with ties or ear loops
  • maintain their shape after washing and drying
  • be made of at least three layers of tightly woven material (such as cotton or linen)
  • be large enough to completely and comfortably cover the nose and mouth without gaping


Storing, cleaning and disposing a mask

If the face covering can be cleaned, you should:

  • put it directly into the washing machine or a bag that can be emptied into the washing machine
  • wash with other items using a hot cycle with laundry detergent (no special soaps are needed), and dry thoroughly
  • wash your hands after putting the face covering into the laundry

Ensure to let it dry completely before wearing it again. You can include a cloth mask with other laundry.

Damaged and disposable masks should be put in a regular garbage bin that’s lined with a plastic bag. When emptying the bin, take care to not touch used masks or tissues with your hands.