COVID-19 : Coronavirus I FFP2 vs FFP3 Masks: price, how long they last, differences and which one is more effective

The mask It has become an essential complement in our day to day life and, for now, it will accompany us for a long period of time. With the advance of the pandemic, different types of face shield have appeared and even the large textile brands have taken advantage of them to manufacture their own masks and thus increase their business.

But, despite the fact that nowadays we can find this complement in all the shops and businesses that we find on the street, not all are equally effective and experts recommend those that are homologated, such as those of the FFP2 and FFP3 type.

FFP2 and FFP3

The most used masks are the FFP2 and FFP3, which are equivalent to KN95. This type of products They are intended to filter the inhaled air avoiding the entry of polluting particles into our body, as explained by the Ministry of Consumption in a document on the use of masks.

These are masks that contain a microparticle filter with which it protects from the outside in. The autofiltrantes may or may not have an exhalation valve to reduce moisture inside the mask, giving greater comfort in use.

How many hours in a row can an FFP2 and FFP3 mask be worn?

According to the Ministry of Consumption itself, these masks they should not be used for more than four hours in a row. This is the recommendation they make for reasons of comfort and hygiene. Even so, depending on the manufacturer, the period of time of its use may vary.

In any case, it is recommended to stop using the mask when it feels wet or dirty. On the other hand, When these types of masks become damp or deteriorate due to use, they must be replaced by another.

It may be the case that they are reusable or not: it will be indicated by the abbreviations R (reusable) and NR (not reusable).


Both masks are very similar and the only difference would be the minimum filtration efficiency percentage. In the case of the type FFP2, this percentage is a 92% and 8% leakage to the outside.

Type masks FFP3 offer a percentage of a 98% minimum filtration efficiency, and 2% leakage to the outside. Taking into account these differences, the FFP3 mask is the most effective as it has a filtration efficiency of 98%.


Regarding prices, FFP2s tend to be cheaper. Many supermarkets and large chains have put them on sale: in In El Corte Inglés it is possible to buy the FFP2 with valve for € 12.80 a pack of two units, while in Alcampo it is possible to buy a pack of five FFP2 units at € 13.75.

They can be purchased at pharmacies, supermarkets and department stores. Also online on websites such as Amazon, El Corte Inglés, Pharmacius, Promofarma or Mifarma, both individually and in packs.