Coronavirus DIY: Local artist Soir shares instructions on how to make face masks

After losing her photography job with an Italian designer in Palm Beach County, Miami artist Jacqueline "Soir" Rios has been spending her time making face masks. (Local 10 News)

MIAMI – Jacqueline “Soir” Rios was terrified. Her one-year-old daughter, Coraline, had difficulty breathing. She was at the West Boca Medical Center when nurses told her her husband wasn’t allowed inside. That was the moment, she said, the coronavirus pandemic felt real.

A pediatric nurse named Brenda calmed her down, and she told her about the lack of face masks. Rios, 40, thought about her sister who is an audiologist at Veterans Affairs hospitals in South Florida, her brother who is a Miami-Dade firefighter and her friend from middle school who is a Jackson Memorial Hospital therapist.

The pandemic also forced Bugatchi, an Italian made clothing company with a corporate office in Boca Raton, to close. Unable to work there as a product photographer, she was a woman on a mission. As soon as her daughter was discharged from the hospital, the New World School of the Arts graduate got to work.

NOTE: In addition to Soir’s process, some people are using wax thread for the nose bridge, hair bands for the elastic, a pocket for a disposable 3-micron filter layer and double-sided tape to seal them on the face.

Researchers evaluated several household materials to determine, which one offered the most protection during a pandemic. Here is what they found:

Tea Towel: 72.4%

Cotton Mix: 70.2%

Antimicrobial pillowcase: 68.9%

Linen: 61.6%

Pillowcase: 57%

Silk: 54.3%

100% Cotton T-shirt: 50.8%

Scarf: 48.8%

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