Hemp has long been touted for its versatility and the fact that it is a sustainable, environmentally friendly crop.

Unlike cotton, which depletes soil and is a demanding crop to grow, hemp enriches soil and can even remove containments like cadmium, notes Forbes.

With face masks in high demand during the COVID-19 pandemic, here are five reasons why you should consider making your next mask hemp-based, rather than cotton or synthetic.


Hemp is naturally antimicrobial

Hemp is naturally resistant to mould, mildew and odour, making it the perfect material to cover your mouth and nose while staying clean and dry. Unlike synthetic materials, hemp is breathable and naturally moisture-wicking.


Hemp is biodegradable

Disposable masks are convenient and readily available at most corner stores, but the synthetic materials are not biodegradable, meaning that those masks you’re tossing out are going to be sitting in a landfill for years and contributing to the already staggering, and world-leading, amount of garbage Canadians produce per capita.


Hemp is durable

Hemp is one of the strongest naturally occurring fibres on Earth. “Hemp fibre is stronger and softer than cotton, lasts twice as long as cotton, and will not mildew,” according to Hemp Basics. You can toss a hemp mask in the wash as much as you’d like and it will retain its shape and get softer with each wear and wash.


Hemp is a sustainable crop

Hemp requires no herbicides or pesticides to grow and is ready to harvest within 120 days. It can also grow in varying conditions and requires far less water than other crops, especially cotton. And while it’s growing, and its root system is restoring the soil, the plant also captures carbon dioxide and releases oxygen, notes Candid Magazine.


Hemp can block ultraviolet rays

According to research published in the Handbook of Natural Fibres, hemp and other natural fibres have the ability to absorb ultraviolet rays due to their chemical composition. This would make a hemp-based mask the perfect choice for the summer.