Is a KN95 the same as an N95 mask, and can I trust them from China?
KN95 respirator masks come in a few more varieties, some of which are not recommended. For example, some use ear loops to hold them to your face, which just can’t reliably maintain the seal necessary to ensure there is no leakage around the mask. Is this better than nothing? . . . hmm, maybe for personal use (although there are many domestic alternatives), but certainly not for healthcare workers in a clinical setting.
However, KN95 respirators approved by the National Institute for Occupational Health and Safety (NIOSH) are those with two firm elastic headbands and should deliver a comparable level of safety to N95 masks.
The trick is that many foreign manufacturers of KN95 respirator masks are turning out substandard masks with counterfeit certification marks, manufacturer’s names, logos, and model numbers. The effort needed to research all of this would require a great need and lack of more trusted alternatives.