According to WXYZ in Detroit, the Ford Motor Company is hoping a new mask design they've just gotten patent-pending approval will help both the hearing impaired, and everyone missing a smile during the pandemic.

The new mask design is a clear respirator mask that allows people to once again see your smile or something hearing-impaired people have needed since last March, to be able to see your lips to help understand what you're saying to them. The company told WXYZ that they're expecting to certify the new clear respirator mask to N95 standards very soon.

Jim Baumbick, Ford VP of Enterprise Product Line Management said in a press release on WXYZ,

“One of the things that’s missing during the pandemic is the power of a smile. This clear respirator promises to improve interactions between neighbors, at the store and for those who have hearing impairments.”

The transparent facemasks will be washable and reusable. Ford is still testing the respirators WXYZ reports in order to prove their effectiveness, with hopes that the new masks could be out and available to the public as soon as this spring.

I think this is a great idea, partly because it takes away one of the complaints of people not wanting to wear a mask which is, "we miss seeing smiles" and also because it will finally help a segment of the population understand their world a bit better when dealing with people wearing face masks.

I do wonder though, how are you going to keep it from fogging up? Cause it will look peculiar if every couple of seconds we're licking the clear part of our masks so it's not foggy anymore.  I can see a lot of people getting into trouble over that. I also don't want to have to spit in my mask and wipe it around like you do goggles when you're snorkeling or scuba diving, cause that would also be super weird... and gross.  They're engineers, so I'm sure they've figured something out. But also, why can't the one's tested and super safe, look like these cool (probably not as safe) clear masks on Amazon?

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