Nurses and doctors wear them all day every day for 12 hours or more at a time, but some people still insist that wearing a mask is too uncomfortable, impedes breathing or is just plain inconvenient.
But one young woman has put the mask debate to rest once and for all.
Twenty-year-old Rhys Yarbrough was born without a left ear—which makes wearing a mask a bit of a challenge, right? So she came up with an ingenious hack that makes it easy for even her to wear a mask.
Yarbrough recently shared her brilliant hack to her TikTok page.
@rhysyarbrough Reply to @halah80 Spent $6 on this tiktok just for you. ##noear##fyp##popsocket
♬ Rainy Days X Animal Crossing - ViBES
Now if Yarbrough can come up with a solution, what excuse do the rest of us have?
Speaking with BuzzFeed News, Yarbrough explained the origin of her mask hack. She was born with a condition called Goldenhar syndrome that made the right side of her face form incorrectly, resulting in the need for seven corrective craniofacial surgeries.
She is also deaf on her right side and uses a BAHA—Bone-Anchored Hearing Aid—to assist her with hearing.
Not long ago, someone on TikTok asked Yarbrough how she has adapted to mask wearing, since she only has one ear. Yarbrough has a prosthetic ear that she usually wears, so mask-wearing is pretty simple for her.
But when people joked that she should try 3M Command Hooks or a PopSocket instead, she got curious. When she found herself in a Walmart the next day, she decided to go ahead and give both a whirl.
She prefers the PopSocket, but told BuzzFeed both options work pretty well.
"The PopSocket was definitely more sturdy, and felt more comfortable to wear. They peeled off easy, and it didn't leave a mark."
People on TikTok were apparently curious too.
Yarbrough's PopSocket video has more than 24 million views.
"I tend to forget that my life is different from most people, and I would have never guessed that putting a freaking PopSocket on my face would get this much attention."
On Twitter, people were also wowed by Yarbrough's innovation and saw it as yet one more reason why there's no excuses for going maskless.
This person has a legitimate medical reason not to wear a mask, yet still does. They have Goldenhar syndrome, which… https://t.co/P6jq8N3g2m— Mari. Anishinaabekwe ozhibii'ige Indigenous writer (@Mari. Anishinaabekwe ozhibii'ige Indigenous writer) 1597448551.0
@wordglass @fangirlJeanne It is AMAZING how many people are able to work around these sorts of issues and wear mask… https://t.co/vXV1UASN2L— Brigid Keely - She/Her (@Brigid Keely - She/Her) 1597458864.0
Omg this person doesn't have an ear on one side and is a decent enough human being to sub a pop socket so they can… https://t.co/HRAIdUyUBG— Charlotte Emily 🌻 (@Charlotte Emily 🌻) 1597497745.0
Think YOU have difficulty wearing a face mask? Woman with only one ear improvises to accommodate wearing a mask. https://t.co/ZuqCCeja80— Joe Kelley (@Joe Kelley) 1597409803.0
Watch this and tell me again how you can't wear a mask. https://t.co/FvGhtXWE64— Joe Kelly (@Joe Kelly) 1597409928.0
This headline from @ikran says it all: This Woman With One Ear Is Going Viral For Showing How Easy It Is To Get Us… https://t.co/gZhj7QfBqm— Tom Namako (@Tom Namako) 1597627968.0
This is awesome - literally no excuses https://t.co/ZMqQMnUa1a— It was Melyssa all along (@It was Melyssa all along) 1597524163.0
Ask me why I love TikTok and I’ll tell you I just watched a girl who was born with only one ear put a pop socket on… https://t.co/axfjeV9ifQ— Baby Sinclaire (@Baby Sinclaire) 1597020303.0
@2Taurean2U This is amazing! Tik tok has introduced me to some incredible people.— (n) 开 🇭🇹 (@(n) 开 🇭🇹) 1597028623.0
@BuzzFeedNews I was born with one ear too! I adjusted by adding cotton strings to the ends of the mask and wrapping… https://t.co/HZ4yfC846V— Edith Parra (@Edith Parra) 1597528199.0
So there you have it—the mask debate is officially over. Now if someone can just share how to make them not fog up your eyeglasses...