Naomi Campbell's flight routine now includes a face shield, and experts say she's on to something

Naomi Campbell/YouTube
  • British supermodel Naomi Campbell is trending on social media once again, this time for the extensive protection she wore on a recent flight.
  • Although she's previously worn a haz-mat suit and mask, she also added a face shield to her latest travel outfit.
  • Many of the precaution she's taking have been recommended by experts, including the use of a face shield, which may offer more protection than a cloth mask.
  • Visit Insider's homepage for more stories.

Naomi Campbell does not mess around.

The supermodel, always known for her fastidious hygiene precautions on airplanes, has been a trend-setter in recent months for her extensive precautions against the coronavirus when traveling.

Campbell has posted on social media about her protective outfit, which has previously included a full-body hazmat suit, goggles, gloves, and a face mask.Advertisement

"In all honesty, this is not a funny time, it's not a humorous time, I'm not doing this for laughs," Campbell previously said in a YouTube video about her hazmat suit, which she said she bought on Amazon for $16. "This is how I feel comfortable traveling, if I have to travel. I'm trying to keep it at a minimum."

A photo posted May 16 on Twitter shows the most recent addition to her travel gear is a face shield — a clear plastic barrier that covers the face from the chin to the top of the forehead.

Experts say face shields may be better than cloth masks

Campbell is on to something with her precautions. Experts previously endorsed her habit of wiping down high-touch surfaces, a habit many of us have now adopted, and now she may be an early role model for face shields as well.
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Experts are beginning to note that face shields may have advantages over masks since they have a less permeable barrier for viral particles. They are also easier to clean and wear properly.

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You should also wipe down surfaces and wear gloves

Campbell is also right about wiping down surfaces, according to experts. While the coronavirus is primarily spread through airborne droplets, you can also become infected if you touch a contaminated surface and then touch your face. Advertisement

As such, a crucial precaution is to wipe down high-touch surfaces (on an airplane, this includes the seat, armrest, tray tables, and seat belt) with a sanitizer that's at least 62% alcohol. You should also frequently wash your hands, either with warm water and soap or a high-alcohol cleanser, to get rid of any germs you may have inadvertently picked up.

Gloves can offer some measure of protection against any wayward pathogens hitching a ride on your hands. However, gloves will only be protective if you change them when they come into contact with potentially contaminated surfaces. Otherwise, if you wear the same pair constantly, your gloves can carry around contagious particles and potentially transfer them to you if you touch your face.

You probably don't need a hazmat suit

However, while the hazmat suit may give Campbell peace of mind, you probably don't need one — clothing is not likely to be a major source of transmission for most people, experts previously told Insider.Advertisement

While medical professional wear full-body protection when treating coronavirus patients, the general public is more likely to get sick from contact with other people than from germs on their clothing, said Dr. Lee Riley, professor and chair of the Division of Infectious Disease and Vaccinology at Berkeley Public Health.

"It's not necessary to wash your clothing all the time," Riley said. "Just wash your clothes regularly and change them every day."

Ultimately, unless you're an essential worker or otherwise can't avoid traveling, the safest thing you can do is still to stay close to home.Advertisement

Read more:

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How medical workers decontaminate their clothes when they get home from treating coronavirus patients, and why you don't have to do the same

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