You may first check out the nearest Guardian, Watsons or Unity near your place. Most likely, Guardian and Watsons are out of stock already, while Unity has a long queue. (I personally checked them out on 28 Jan near my place.)
Do check out the terms and conditions before joining the long queue at Unity. (They will put a poster in front of their store.) Apparently the queue at Unity is only for those who have pre-ordered masks beforehand!
The next best option is to buy online, specifically from Qoo10 since they have stock from Korea. I ordered these two listed below which are decently priced (some sellers are taking advantage of the situation to raise up the price). Korean masks are said to be higher quality and more comfortable to wear.
Basically, the best type of mask is N95 but they are expensive. Surgical mask is cheaper and is said by experts to be good enough for preventing the Wuhan virus.
Where to buy surgical mask online
Due to overwhelming demand, even online sellers on Qoo10 are running out of stock. The next option is to buy US surgical masks from Amazon. The below are good options:
- Barcley is the #1 Best Seller in the Medical Face Masks Category
- Starryshine Lifeguard Masks are Medical Grade masks perfect for Surgical, Allergy, Dental, Cold, Flu & Germ. Alcohol Pads Included.
Where to buy N95 mask in Singapore
N95 masks are actually more powerful than surgical masks. The only downsides are that they are more expensive and also more uncomfortable to wear (over long periods of time). N95 masks are so named because they can block 95% of particles of size 0.3 micrometers. This is according to the US NIOSH air filtration rating.
Note that N95 masks can be reused as long as it “maintains its structural and functional integrity and the filter material is not physically damaged or soiled.”. The CDC (USA Centre of Disease Control) also recommends reuse of N95 masks to a certain extent (defined as “limited reuse”).
Since surgical masks are the top candidates for purchase, it is often the case that surgical masks are sold out first, while N95 masks may still be in stock. A top manufacturer of N95 masks is 3M, which is based in the US. Hence, purchasing N95 masks from Amazon is cost-effective in the sense that it is right from the source of the manufacturer (3M).
- 3M 8511 Respirator, N95, Cool Flow Valve (10-Pack) is one of the more comfortable models of N95 masks. It has a lightweight design for comfort, and is comfortable for long periods of wear.