Correct Sequence to Putting on an N95 Respirator

Jun 23 , 2020

Correct Sequence to Putting on an N95 Respirator

When you put on a disposable respirator

Position your respirator correctly and check the seal to protect yourself from COVID-19.

Cup the respirator in your hand. Hold the respirator under your chin with the nose piece up. The top strap (on single or double strap respirators) goes over and rests at the top back of your head. The bottom strap is positioned around the neck and below the ears.

Place your fingertips from both hands at the top of the metal nose clip (if present). Slide fingertips down both sides of the metal strip to mold the nose area to the shape of your nose.

Place both hands over the respirator, take a quick breath in to check the seal. Breathe out. If you feel a leak when breathing in or breathing out, there is not a proper seal.

Select other PPE items that do not interfere with the fit or performance of your respirator.


Do not use a respirator that appears damaged or deformed, no longer forms an effective seal to the face, becomes wet or visibly dirty, or if breathing becomes difficult.


Do not allow facial hair, jewelry, glasses, clothing, or anything else to prevent proper placement or to come between your face and the respirator.


Do not crisscross the straps.


Do not wear a respirator that does not have a proper seal. If air leaks in or out, ask for help or try a different size or model.


Do not touch the front of the respirator during or after use! It may be contaminated.


When you take off a disposable respirator


Remove by pulling the bottom strap over back of head, followed by the top strap, without touching
the respirator.


Discard in a waste container.


Clean your hands with alcohol-based hand sanitizer or soap and water.

Employers must comply with the OSHA Respiratory Protection Standard, 29 CFR 1910.134, which includes medical evaluations, training, and fit testing.
Additional information is available about how to safely put on and remove personal protective equipment, including respirators: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/hcp/using-ppe.html