A quick peek at the news is probably all it takes to have you polishing off an entire bag of gummy bears, but a South Korean design studio has come up with a way to make you feel less guilt about all that stress-eating. It’s designed a 3D printed face shield that works with empty packaging to help protect you from exposure to viruses and germs.
Months after the coronavirus reached North America, sourcing personal protective equipment is still a challenge, even for staff at hospitals and other medical facilities who are most at risk of being exposed to the virus. The problem has sparked makers from around the world to come up with solutions, from Etsy sellers focusing their efforts on making face masks, to tinkerers coming up with new ways to put their 3D printers to good use, including designing and manufacturing affordable face shields.
The only problem with the 3D printing approach is that while plastic filament can be used to manufacture a face shield’s frame, the material can’t be used to create the see-through barrier that prevents airborne particles from reaching the wearer’s face. It requires transparent plastic to be sourced and cut to size, which complicates the effort. And that’s what makes mmm design studio’s Anything face shield so clever — a quick dig through a recycling bin should yield all the additional materials you need, even if it’s just an empty discarded gummy bear bag.
The design of the face shield’s frame is fairly straightforward: it includes arms for resting on the wearer’s ears and a bridge support for the nose. What sets it apart from other designs, however, is a hinged clamp that allows almost any see-through material to be used as the actual shield. Transparent plastic food packaging undoubtedly works best given its ability to protect food also means it’s water- and moisture- proof. (You probably don’t want to repurpose the mesh bag your oranges and avocados came in.)
Even face shields need to be regularly cleaned and sanitised to remain effective, but in this case you can simply return your plastic packaging to the recycling bin and swap it out for something else. As an added bonus, depending on the packaging you choose to repurpose for the Anything face shield, you can spend your day enjoying the smell of powdered doughnuts, jelly beans, or even tortilla chips — just make sure you choose wisely.