Project Open Source:
Protective Face Shield

by Inside Weather

It’s not designer, but it does the trick & could help your community right now.

Please share these resources freely with your neighbor & local businesses. While our team will gladly help produce these face shields for anyone in need, our primary intention is to openly distribute design & manufacturing guidelines to everyday people & local businesses that have the basic tools at hand. These PDFs are for sharing. Please do your part to help & pass along!


The Problem

Across local communities, face shields are one of the Personal Protective Equipment items that are sorely lacking in supply. Hospitals have rapidly gone from screening a few patients in a day to hundreds. They “are unable to order certain medical gear amid a surge in global demand for the equipment” says Bloomberg in understanding the challenges Kaiser Permanente is facing. The CEO of PPHS in Georgia told ABC “that they ran through six months worth of protective equipment, or PPE, in seven days.”


Friday, March 20
The San Joaquin General Hospital requested 1000 Face Shields and 5000 additional replaceable components (the disposable foam & elastic set). 

Saturday evening, March 21
Our team delivered a small batch of the order to ensure it met their standards. 12 hours later, it was confirmed that the design was great. The rest will be delivered mid this week.

The Research

Bloomberg points out that Italy’s healthcare workers, also suffering from shortages of PPE, represent “about eight percent of that country’s cases” of COVID-19. What can we do to help the medical community mitigate the daily dangers & challenges at hand? On top of the fact that our supply chains are stunted, unfortunately, the prevalent PPE options are designed for single use only. So amidst the shortages, medical professionals are being asked to reuse protective facial equipment with lack of an alternative. At this time, reusing PPE is a forced reality. So let’s ask ourselves, what can we create that is reusable with the readily available materials within our communities?

The Design Philosophy

Obviously, our knowledge about the precise intricacies of sofas sorely exceeds that of medical sanitation practices, so we consulted closely with the San Joaquin General Hospital staff during the design process. The most basic form of a face shield consists of four elements: a flexible plastic guard, a strip of foam, a foam-to-plastic adhesive, and a strap that secures it to your head. Luckily, the element least obtainable (the plastic guard) is also the most reusable, since it can be effectively sanitized. The face shields we needed to design could not be single use.

Our Solution

1. A nanogrip strip of velcro attached to a simple plastic shield. These two elements of the mask are reusable after sufficient sanitation between uses. Glue is of course an option to substitute for velcro but if velcro is accessible, it’s preferable as it safely allows these components to serve multiple uses.

2. A strip of foam. This is for comfort and is designed to be removed, disposed of, and easily replaced.

3. An adjustable, removable strap. We used a flat elastic and attached it with staples but really anything from a string to rubber band could suffice.

Many of your local small businesses likely have tools to produce these in bulk. For reference, this is the type of cutting machine we’re able to use but any laser cutter, clicker press, or other die cutting machines can work.


The Ask

While you yourself may not need this level of Personal Protective Equipment, your neighbor might & your local healthcare team does. So please share it with your community in hopes that it’ll get to those who need it.

From our house to yours, stay safe,

Do you need a batch made or know of someone who does?
Let’s (virtually) get in touch:

These resources are for informational purposes only and is not professional medical advice nor guarantee of outcome. Inside Weather is not responsible for errors or omissions in sharing these resources.