Demi Lovato was spotted out and about this weekend in a face mask as the novel coronavirus continues to spread. Candid photos of Lovato were published by TMZ, showing the singer heading out to a grocery store in Los Angeles on Sunday. She was taking every precaution against the pandemic.
Lovato went out shopping at Erewhon Market in Los Angeles on Sunday — a high-end supermarket popular among stars. She wore a nondescript black outfit and a matching black face mask with small filters on the sides. Lovato also wore latex gloves. The 27-year-old did not talk to reporters or comment publicly on the mask and gloves, but presumably she wore them to help slow the spread of the coronavirus, or COVID-19. The CDC is urging people to take extreme precautions while out in public, even if they feel perfectly healthy. While most cases are perfectly manageable, they can spread to more vulnerable populations like the elderly and immunocompromised.
Demi Lovato Shopping With Mask to Prevent Coronavirus https://t.co/H5HFnTMKCo— TMZ (@TMZ) March 16, 2020
Lovato drove this point home on Instagram, where she shared a video posted by musician Samantha Ronson. It showed a line of matches standing on end and igniting each other, which served as a visual metaphor for the spread of coronavirus. It was meant to communicate the point that social distancing is not a measure to protect yourself, but rather your community from the spread of COVID-19.
Still, many commenters were unimpressed by Lovato's preventative measures, feeling that she was contributing to public misconceptions. For one thing, some users thought that she was wearing her mask upside down, assuming that the pointed part by her chin was actually meant to fit snugly over her nose.
For another thing, many cited experts at the Center for Disease Control and Prevention or the World Health Organization, who have said that surgical masks are meant to be worn by the sick, not the healthy. They assumed that Lovato does not have COVID-19, and is therefore just perpetuating confusing information.
😆 The pointy end at her chin is actually for her nose ridge! Even if this did work, she’s wearing it upside down! 🙃— Carina (@Caris_03) March 16, 2020
In fact, there are several different kinds of face masks with varying shapes and uses. The CDC advises people who are sick or have been exposed to COVID-19 to wear surgical masks if they must go out in public, as it protects others from their own germs. For those that are healthy, however, the mask offers little or no protection.
Since it has some kind of filter in it, however, Lovato's mask may have been an N95 respirator or similar product. These can help protect the healthy from outside germs in many cases, and are worn by healthcare professionals. Still, detractors pointed out that those traveling with Lovato were not wearing masks, so if she shared the air with them later on in the day, she could be infected them.
All of those arguments ignore the fact that Lovato may have been exposed to the virus herself, and may therefore be looking to protect others from her own breath. The singer has not given any updates on her health status.
But the mask doesn't prevent the virus. Why don't people listen? It protects those around her from HER. So if she is sick stay home.— Brynn (@SoCalBee) March 16, 2020