Subz designs 100% cotton face masks as a preventative measure for COVID-19

In an effort to address the spread of COVID-19, KwaZulu-Natal entrepreneur and philanthropist, Sue Barnes, has designed a 100% cotton face mask which can assist in minimising the transmission of viral germs.

Founder of Subz Pants and Pads and its NPO, Project Dignity, Barnes successfully created the country’s first reusable sanitary range, extending its offerings into reusable nappies, maternity and incontinence wear. She has now turned her attention to hygiene of another kind – face masks – in an effort to curb the transmission of COVID-19, one of the biggest global pandemics experienced in our lifetime.

“I was approached by a retailer at the beginning of February to create a face mask in light of the pandemic,” explained Barnes. “So, we immediately set to work and created the Subz mask which is washable, sustainable and hypo-allergenic.”

Although this is not a medical mask, it has been designed to stop the transfer of germs from surfaces to the face, and the wearer is able to confine the spreading of airborne germs that result when sneezing or coughing. Wearers must wash hands thoroughly before putting on, and when removing the mask to minimise the chance of germ transference. Masks must be replaced as soon as they are damp. 

“We all need to be taking every possible step to minimise the transfer of this contagious disease and protect each other,” said Sue. “It’s not just about preventing ourselves from contracting the virus, but protecting others who are possibly immune-compromised.”

And, in an effort to reach as many people as possible, Subz Pants and Pads are encouraging agents to come on board and sell the Subz masks at various key points as needed. The masks cost R15 each and are available for individual or bulk order from