In Which US States is it Mandatory to Wear a Face Mask?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) now recommends that all US citizens should wear a face mask in public to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Many US states have taken this recommendation one step further by making mask-wearing mandatory in public places where social distancing is not possible. Failing to comply can lead to denied entry into restaurants and shops, fines, and, in some states, arrest. 

How will this affect you? As parts of America start to reopen, it’s important to remain as informed as possible in order to keep safe. That’s why we’ve put together a comprehensive list of every state’s requirements. Read on to find out exactly what each order is, state by state, at the time of writing.

US face mask

Why Should I Wear a Mask?

It’s worth noting that regardless of the everchanging orders, it’s good practice for all US citizens to wear face masks in public. By doing so, the community-based transmission is set to slow down. Masks help to reduce the spread of large infectious droplets that are expelled from the mouths and noses of virus carriers, with or without symptoms. By wearing a mask, you are protecting others from yourself, and vice versa. 

What Kind of Mask do I Need? 

Cloth and homemade masks are a great alternative to N95 respirators and surgical masks, which should be left in good supply for healthcare professionals. Fast Ship Face Mask is a Flordia-based company committed to supplying every US citizen with reusable, eco-friendly, and affordable 100% cotton masks.

COVID-19 face mask

Has My State made it Mandatory to Wear a Mask?

Here is everything you need to know about whether you are required to wear a face mask where you live. In the below table, you can find out which states have made it a requirement to wear face masks, and exactly who these state orders affect.

State

Mandatory

Recommended

Notes

Alabama

✔️

Employees of restaurants, personal care services, gyms, and fitness centers.

Alaska

✔️

Employees of reopening businesses.

Arizona

✔️

Employees of barbers and cosmetologists.

Arkansas

✔️

Employees and customers of reopening restaurants. Customers without a mask can be refused entry.

California

✔️

Employers are encouraged to provide masks and training to staff.

Colorado

✔️

Workers in critical businesses and government functions.

Connecticut

✔️

All essential employees.

Delaware

✔️

All citizens over the age of 2 when in a public place. It is mandatory for businesses to deny entry to anyone refusing to wear a mask.

District of Columbia

✔️

All citizens over the age of 9 when in a public place.

Florida

✔️

Personal care service providers and employees.

Georgia

✔️

Employees of reopening businesses.

Hawaii

✔️

Employees and customers of reopening businesses.

Idaho

✔️

Employers are encouraged to provide masks to staff.

Illinois

✔️

All citizens over the age of 2 when in a public place. It is mandatory for essential businesses to provide face masks to employees in industries where social distancing is not possible.

Indiana

✔️

Employees of restaurants and personal care services.

Iowa

-

-

None.

Kansas

✔️

CDC guidelines only.

Kentucky

✔️

Employees in industries where social distancing is not possible.

Louisiana

✔️

Employees in industries where social distancing is not possible.

Maine

✔️

Employees and individuals in situations where social distancing is not possible.

Maryland

✔️

All citizens and employees over the age of 9 in any enclosed retail or food establishment and on public transport.


Massachusetts


✔️

Customers and employees of all essential businesses. All citizens over the age of 2 when in a public place. 

Michigan

✔️

All citizens when in an enclosed public space and all employees of essential businesses.

Minnesota

✔️

Employees of reopening retail establishments.

Mississippi

✔️

Employees of restaurants, personal care services, gyms, and fitness centers.

Missouri

✔️

CDC guidelines only.

Montana

-

-

None.

Nebraska

✔️

Employees of reopening restaurants.

Nevada

✔️

Employees of essential businesses and all citizens once leaving their residence.

New Hampshire

✔️

Employees of retail, restaurant, golf courses, and personal care services.

New Jersey

✔️

Customers/visitors and employees of essential retail businesses, construction sites, and on public transport.

New Mexico

✔️

Employees of essential businesses.

New York

✔️

Employees of essential businesses and all citizens over the age of 2 when in a public space.

North Carolina

✔️

Employers are encouraged to provide masks and training to staff. 

North Dakota

✔️

Employees of personal care services.

Ohio

✔️

Employees of essential businesses.

Oklahoma

-

-

None.

Oregon

✔️

Employees of grocery and retail stores, pharmacies, restaurants and bars, gyms and fitness centers, personal care services, and taxis.

Pennsylvania

✔️

Employees and customers of essential retail businesses. Customers can be denied entry if not wearing a mask.

Puerto Rico 

✔️

All citizens when in a public space where social distancing is difficult.

Rhode Island

✔️

All employees in customer-facing industries, non-profit organizations, and office-based businesses. All citizens when in a public space (including outdoors), grocery stores, pharmacies, retail, taxis, and on public transport.

South Carolina

✔️

CDC guidelines only.

South Dakota

✔️

CDC guidelines only.

Tennessee

✔️

CDC guidelines only.

Utah

✔️

Employees of essential businesses, and all citizens in public spaces where social distancing is not possible

Vermont

✔️

Employees of all operating businesses.

Virginia

✔️

Employees of essential businesses.

Washington

✔️

Employees of essential businesses.

West Virginia

✔️

Employees of reopening businesses.

Wisconsin

✔️

CDC guidelines only.

Wyoming

✔️

Employees of gyms and personal care services.

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