The Totobobo Petite mask attracted a lot of female fans since it’s introduction. The smaller version of Totobobo mask is softer, specifically designed for ladies and children. In most cases, the Petite is able to fit ladies out of the pack. For children, it may need to be trimmed smaller to fit. Some parents told us that it is not easy to customise the Totobobo Petite (TT-02) mask to fit their children, especially those smaller ones. Base on extensive study, we’ve redesigned the “Petite Simulator” which can be used to create a full size paper dummy for testing the size, and later serve as the template to customise the Petite mask for the user.
Following is a self-explanatory photo journal of the important steps to creates and trim the paper simulator, and use the result as a template to customise the actual Petite mask:
The protection of a respiratory mask depends on two factors:
1. How good is the air filter and
2. How well the mask is able to seal your face, such that the air you breathe in must go through the filters.
The filters can be tested by reputable laboratory where certified reports are produced. We sent filters to Nelson Labs in USA and the results are published.
However, it is not at all easy for individual user to determine if the mask is really fitting the face completely without any gaps. Totobobo is the only mask in the market provides a simple method, or the “Water Mark check”, to let users ensure the face seal.
The frost edge of the mask changes to transparent when it touches wet skin. This is called the “water mark”. Followings show a step by step approach to check the seal with the water mark:
– Apply a thin layer of water on the user’s face with cotton wool, especially around the nose bridge and chin area.
– Don the mask and carefully examine the water mark.
– Check if the water mark form a complete, continuous loop encircling the nose, mouth and under the chin, that indicates the mask is making a good seal around your face. The mask is now ready for use.
– If there are patch(s) of frost area breaking up the water-mark-loop, that indicates where the seal breaks and you may need to adjust the mask to improve the seal. There are several things you can do, such as:
1) Adjust the position of the mask. (shift it up and down to find the optimal position)
2) Adjust the tension of the elastic straps (it should be firm, but not too tight)
3) ReShape the mask (use 70°C water or hair dryer, but don’t overheat!)
4) Cut the mask smaller (only when it is really necessary!)
Your mask is ready to give you the best protection when you have a good seal. Do use the water mark method to double check the seal.
Oxygen is always in the air even under heavy smoke, the problem is that the air is contaminated by smoke from the forest fire. A good fitting respirator, such as N95 mask, to filter out the smoke particles is a common solution. However, under emergency situation, it may not be possible to distribute N95 masks to all who needs it. Further more, even if the mask is available, it is not easy to ensure it is fitting correctly. A non-fitting N95 mask is not effective.
Here is a simple idea to transform readily available material into an air filter, which is able to filter the air for breathing safely.
To create this DIY air filter, you need a couple of T-shirts and a plastic water bottle plus a couple of strings. Based on our test with a professional machine (Portacount Pro 8038) such DIY filter is able to reduce air pollution up to 40 folds, achieving a filtration efficiency similar to N95 masks. It is capable of bringing down the fine particles (PM2.5, PM10) from super hazardous level (PSI 1000) to moderate (PSI 75).
How to DIY a personal air filter from water bottle and T shirts?
1) Cut some holes in the middle section of a water bottle
2) Fold up and roll a couple of T-shirt around the water bottle. (the one in the following video create 20 layer of fabric)
3) Tight the top and bottom part with a string to seal the gaps
4) suck air from the water bottle.
5) breathing mouth in, nose out.
Polluted air enters the bottle through the many layers of T Shirts material. Most fine particles will be trapped in between the many (20+) layers of fabric. We measured with a professional machine and the pollution can be reduced by 40 times (97.5% filtration efficiency). This is equals to bring the PSI down from 1000 to 75, a substantial improvement of air quality from readily available material on hand.
If you feel this idea is useful for someone you know, please share. Here is link to a PDF file for printing to share: water-bottle-air-filter. If you have more ideas or suggestions, please let me know in the comment as well.
Note: The idea of DIY water bottle air filter has been demonstrated in our Lab in Singapore to show that it is effective to cut down air pollution. However different fabric material has different filtration characteristic. This idea has not been certified by any authority. User agree to take own responsibility for the use of the idea.
Due to the recent haze situation in Singapore, we receive many questions from customers regarding how to fit the mask. This is especially important for children because their lungs are not yet fully developed and are more vulnerable. Wearing an ill fitting mask gives a false sense of security; unaware users may expose themselves in unnecessary risks.
Upon customer’s request, we conducted a Mask Fitting Demo session at the Medic Drugstore at Tanjong Pagar Plaza. Medic Drugstore is our retail partner in Singapore since 2009.
First of all, we need to understand why mask fitting is important. The working principle of a mask (negative pressure respirator) is to seal-off mouth and nose such that the only way the polluted air can get into the mask is through the air filters. If the mask is not fitted properly, ambient air can easily bypass the filters and enter breathing zone directly. Henceforth wearing a poorly fitted mask is similar to not wearing a mask. On the other hand, a well fitted mask allows the users to breathe in cleaned air.
Totobobo mask fitting procedure:
1. Pre-test*– To demonstrate poor fit leads to poor respiratory protection.
2. ReShape to improve the fit – This is an iterative process between watermark seal check and reshaping.
3. Final test* – To demonstrate the high protection performance of Totobobo mask when a good seal is achieved.
*A professional respirator fit-test equipment, TSI Portacount Pro+ 8038, was used to validate the protection performance. Portacount Pro is the gold standard in the industry for respirator testing.
Two important features (unique to Totobobo mask) we demonstrated during the Mask-fitting session: The Watermark Seal Check (WSC) and the ReShape function.
Watermark Seal Check (WSC):
Watermark Seal Check (WSC) is a patented feature of Totobobo mask. It allows users to check the seal by means of “Watermark”, easily and accurately. The “Watermark” refers to the area of the mask changes from translucent to transparent when the mask touches wet skin. A continuous watermark loop around nose and mouth indicates a completed seal.
First wet face with water, then put on the mask.
Check the edge areas of the mask whether a continuous watermark loop appears around nose and mouth.
Tips: Sometimes by adjusting the straps (shorter or longer), making it a little tighter or looser, or moving the mask up or down can shift the watermark and change the seal condition.
ReShape the mask
Totobobo mask is made of a special polymer which allows re-shaping when it is heated up by hot water or hair dryer. Most of leakage problems occur below chin and around nose bridge can be solved by ReShaping. Here are two approaches to eliminate the gaps in these areas.
To eliminate gap below chin – A new mask usually doesn’t fit a face perfectly due to a fold-line formed whilst flat packed. The fold line causes a gap below chin. To eliminate this gap:
Dip the mask quickly into and out of hot water a few times (70-80°C, NO boiling water which will damage the mask permanently)
Press a finger on the fold line against tabletop, hold it for 10 seconds.
Release to check if the fold line diminishes. If the fold line is still obvious, the water may not be hot enough. Redo with hotter water. The lower part of the mask should have been widened up.
To eliminate gaps near nose bridge – With the help of Watermark, take note of the location of the gaps (translucent area) next to nose bridge.
Dip the mask quickly into and out of hot water a few times (70-80°C, NO boiling water which will damage the mask permanently)
Hold the bottom (chin part) of the mask with one hand, use the other hand to help shape the nose bridge area (use thumb and index finger to press at the points where the gaps are observed).
Hold the mask in the new shape for a minute or two to fix the shape.
Try the newly shaped mask on user’s face with the WSC method. You may need to do this back and forth a few times in order to eliminate all the gaps. But once you achieve it, the new shape can be retained for subsequent uses.
Below is an overview of the “Mask fitting and validation process” for your reference (Click to enlarge).
[Click here if you cannot view youtube from China]
Some users feedback that it would be nice to add a nose clip to Totobobo mask, especially for people with prominent nose feature. These users experienced a small gap next to their nose bridge. Many disposable masks comes with an integrated metal nose clip. You can use it to force the mask to “clip” your nose, this is useful to eliminate the small gaps next to the nose bridge. However metal nose clip is not a reliable long term solution for a reusable mask. Our tests have shown that after a limited times of bending, the metal clip will become fatigued and easily broken.
The following video shows how to use hot water (70°C max.) to mould a Totobobo mask, then use another bowl of cold water to freeze the new shape. This process can be repeated many times and therefore is a better long term solution than a metal nose clip.
The heat treatment can be applied to any parts of the mask (e.g. the chin). The possibilities are limitless. You may need to try moulding the mask several times to achieve the best fit.
“moulding” feature helps to improve protection and wearing comfort.
Better face fit = fewer gaps = better protection
PM2.5, the very fine airborne particles smaller than 2.5 microns that can be inhaled and travel deep into the lungs and enter the blood stream, causes micro inflammation and hardens the blood vessels. Recent studies discovered PM2.5 not only triggers lung and other diseases along the respiratory track, but also triggers cardiovascular diseases and strokes. Common surgical masks or even a poor fitting N95 mask won’t be much help, because airborne viruses or fine particles like PM2.5 can easily bypass the filter through the air gaps. Ensuring face fit is the first fundamental step towards respiratory protection.
Totobobo masks provides three key features to help you to obtain the optimal face fit and protection:
1) Sizing: Totobobo mask is the first and only mask that allows the user to cut to size. You don’t have to risk over cutting your mask. Download this template and test the size with a paper dummy first, before cutting the real mask!
2) Fine tuning with heat moulding: The heat moulding process makes it possible for you to fine tune the face-fitting of the mask. A small gap around the nose bridge or below the chin? No problem, just re-mould the mask and you can eliminate or at least minimize the gaps. You can re-mould the mask as many times as you want. Remember don’t treat the mask with boiling water or you may destroy the mask! Use hot water around 80C instead.
Another point to note, a small gap occurs during exhaling does not affect the effectiveness of protection, and the leak can be beneficial because it helps to release the exhaust air. What you need to check is whether the seal is closed when you inhale, due to the negative pressure while inhaling. Ideally you would adjust the straps so that there are small gaps to speed up the exhaling due to the pressure.
3) Visual seal check: through the unique transparent mask you can check if the mask is touching the chin below and forming a good seal. If the seal is not optimal, you can fine tune the cut, the moulding or simply adjust the position and tension of the strap to get a better fit.
If a mask is not comfortable to wear, it won’t get used much and it won’t get much chance to function either.
The heat moulding process can make the mask follow your face profile closely. Therefore you can reduce the tension of the straps while still getting a good fit. Ideally you can adjust the tension to a minimum level to keep the mask on your face. When you exhale, the internal pressure pushes the mask outwards a bit and breaks the seal around the face, quickly releasing the exhaust. When you inhale the mask “sucks” to your face due to the negative pressure and the elastic strap, closing up the gaps and letting the air in only through the filters. The entire mask functions like a one-way valve, but without a physical valve. Some users describe this state as “The mask is breathing with me.”
Got a question? leave a comment or send your question to totobobomask(at)gmail.com
Some users reported they break the plastic ring that lock the filter in place. Here is a photo showing how to remove the lock ring without breaking it.
The trick is to press on the inside of the lock ring while lifting the tab at the outside. This technique effective “bending” the entire plastic parts. The ring will come out naturally without a lot of force pulling at the tab.
[Click here if you cannot view youtube from China]
Some of our user’s feedback stated that it would be great to add a nose clip to the Totobobo Mask, especially for people with a prominent nose. These users are experiencing small gaps between the mask and their nose’s bridge. However, a nose clip is not a reliable solution in the long run for reusable masks. Prototype testings have showed that the clip breaks or loses it’s rigidity after repetitive bending and will break eventually.
The following video shows how to re-mould the Totobobo Mask, using hot and cold water. The hot water helps to soften the body of the mask, while the cold water helps to harden the mask after reshaping it to the desired shape. This method can be done over and over again, there fore, making it a more reliable solution.
The heat treatment can be applied to any parts of the mask (e.g. the chin), not only the nose area. The possibilities are limitless. You may need to try moulding the mask several times to achieve the best fit.
Moulding feature further enhances protection and comfort for the user.
Better face fitment = lesser gaps = better protection
PM2.5, a very fine airborne particle, is smaller than 2.5 microns which can be inhaled and travel deeply into our lungs, which will then enter our bloodstream. These particles causes micro inflammation and hardens our blood vessels. Recent studies have showed that the PM2.5 not only triggers diseases in our lungs and other respiratory organs, but also triggers cardiovascular diseases and strokes. Common surgical masks or even a poor fitting N95 mask won’t be of much help due to the cunningness of the PM2.5. Ensuring a secured face fit is the first fundamental step towards respiratory protection.
Totobobo Mask have three key features to aid you in obtaining a optimal face fit.
Sizing : Totobobo Mask is the first and only mask that allows its user to cut to fit. You don’t have to risk over cutting the mask. Download this template to test the size using a paper dummy first, before proceeding to cut the actual mask.
Fine tuning with heat moulding : The heat moulding process makes it possible for the user to fine tune the fitment of the mask. Small gaps around the nose or under the chin? No worries! Just re-mould the mask and you’ll be able to eliminate, or at the least, minimize these gaps. You can re-do this step as many times as you like! Remember to not use boiling to re-mould the mask, otherwise you’ll risk destroying the mask. Use warm to hot water around 80C instead.
Another point to note, a small gap occurring during exhalation does not affect the effectiveness of the protection, in fact, it may be beneficial as it helps to release exhaust gases quickly. What you need to check is whether the seal is closed tightly when you inhale, due to the negative pressure while inhaling. Ideally, you should adjust the straps so there there are small gaps to speed up exhaling and feeling comfortable at the same time.
Visual Seal Check (VSC) : Using the transparent property of the Totobobo Mask, you can check if the mask is touching the areas below the chin, forming a good deal. If the seal is not optimal, you may fine tune the cutting and moulding of the mask, or simple adjusting the position and tension of the strap to get a better fit.
If a mask is not comfortable to wear, the user will use it less often, so the chances of it being functional is generally lesser as well.
The heat moulding adjustment allows the mask to be re adjusted to fit your face profile closely. A good fit is beneficial as it not only provides a good seal, but you’ll also feel more comfortable wearing it and also not forgetting, you can loosen the tension on the straps as well. During exhalation, the internal pressure pushes the mask and forces the seal to be broken, releasing the air quickly. During inhalation, the process creates a “sucking” motion due to the negative pressure, which closes up the gaps, forcing air to enter only by the filters. The Totobobo mask functions like a one-way valve, without it being a valve physically. Some users described it as “The mask is breathing with me.”
The protection a Respiratory mask provides solely depends on two factors:
1: How effective the air filter is
2: How well the mask is able to fit to the user’s face, making sure the air you breathe in is only passed through from the filters.
The filters are test by reputable laboratories and certified reports are produced.
We have sent files to Nelson Labs in USA and the results were published.
However, it isn’t that easy for users to check if the mask is providing a perfect fit on their face, without any gaps. Totobobo Mask, by far, is the only mask on the market which allows this method to be applied, the “Water Mark Check”.
Water mark shows poor and good seal before and after ReShape of Totobobo mask.
The edge of the Totobobo Mask, which is frosted, turns transparent when it comes into contact with wet skin. This is called the “Water Mark”. The following shows a step by step approach on how to check the sealing of the mask using the water mark.
1 : Apply a thin layer of water on the user’s face with cotton wool, mostly around the nose bridge and the chin areas.
2 : Put on the mask and carefully examine the water marks.
3 : Check if the water mark forms a complete, continuous loop, from the nose all the way through the mouth and under the chin. If the water mark forms a complete loop, it indicates that the mask is providing a good seal and fitment around your face. The mask is then ready for use.
4 : If there are segments of frosted markings that breaks the continuous loop, that means the the mask is not sealed perfectly to the user’s face and has gaps in between. You will have to adjust the mask to improve on the sealing of it.
There are several things you can do to improve the sealing of the Totobobo Mask.
Adjusting the position of the mask. (Shifting it up and down)
Adjusting the tension of the elastic straps. (Firm but not too tight)
One of the most unique features of the Totobobo Mask is the “Cut to size” feature. The original mask fits most adults except users with smaller faces, for example, women and children.
Totobobo Mask is the world’s first customizable respirator. Other products are only available in one size, which only fits a particular age range or facial structure. For many, that is little that can be done to solve this problem. Totobobo Mask, on the other hand, is capable of being trimmed to fit a wide range of faces for optimal comfort and sealing. The mask fits most adults but can also be modified to fit children as young as 5 years old. Totobobo Mask is the most versatile Respirator on the market. Customizing the mask’s size is simple, just follow these steps:
What you need :
A clean pair of sharp scissors
A pair of clean hands
Firstly, you’ll have to determine how small you want the mask to be trimmed to. You can do a quick estimate by covering the mask over the user’s face, or better yet, get a Totobobo Simulator. If you’re uncertain of the exact size, we suggest you to trim the mask down a ring at a time. The mask should ultimately form a snug fit onto the face, but not too tight to hinder the comfort of the user.
Remember to measure twice before you cut.
Then, carefully cut the mask starting from the bottom ring. Follow the markings carefully and slowly cut through the mask. Trim any excess bits and test the size if necessary. The excess material that has been cut out can be disposed and the mask is ready for use.