Health + Fitness

How To Find the Most Comfortable Fitting CPAP Mask

CPAP masks and machines deliver pressurized air to open restricted airways and treat the disruptive effects of sleep apnea. Although CPAP machines and CPAP headgear were less customized and user-friendly several years ago, today’s masks are designed to fit comfortably and minimize air leakage. Manufacturers produce several types of masks that offer different advantages based on your preferences, breathing style, and amount of facial hair.

It is worth keeping in mind that irrespective of the mask used, CPAP manufacturers and clinicians recommend that patients buy distilled water for use in their humidifier chambers. Distilled water is pure water free of minerals and bacteria, and using this prevents limescale buildup on devices that could damage the machine. You can examine the various masks to determine which one can provide the most effective and comfortable CPAP experience.

CPAP Mask Headgear To Keep In Mind

Do you breathe through your nose while you’re sleeping, or does your mouth stay open? Your sleeping behavior can help you determine the type of mask to use. CPAP masks can cover only your mouth, only your nose or cover both. Here are the most common types of CPAP masks.

CPAP machine


Nasal masks only cover your nose and rest on your bridge. They’re ideal for people who feel claustrophobic with full face masks, and their lightweight structure takes a shorter adjustment period than other designs. Patients, who dislike larger masks and have problems with their mouth opening while sleeping, can use a chin strap with the nasal mask.

Nasal Pillow

Since a nasal pillow creates a seal at the base of your nostrils rather than sealing around the entire nose, people with facial hair may prefer a pillow over a nasal mask. Nasal pillows are much smaller than other types and provide a full field of vision without being restrictive or invasive. However, if you have a nasal obstruction, allergies or chronic congestion, a nasal pillow can cause your throat to dry out.

cpap mask

Full Face

Unlike the previous masks, a full-face mask CPAP covers the mouth and nose, and a headgear with four straps secures it. It’s suitable for patients who breathe through their mouths while sleeping and dislike the feel of a chinstrap. If you have congestion or allergies, the full-face mask is a good choice.



The oral mask provides the tightest seal of any design, but it takes a brief time to get used to the mouthpiece design. The mouthpiece rests on top of your lips, and some patients dislike the sensation of the mask touching their teeth. The oral mask is suited for people with severe congestion.



A hybrid mask like the Respcare hybrid combines the design of the nasal pillows with an oral mask. The hybrid covers both the mouth and nose, and while it’s similar to a full face mask, it’s lighter and uses nasal pillows rather than cushions.

How To Choose the Right Mask For You

Selecting the correct CPAP masks depends on your facial structure, amount of facial hair, breathing style while sleeping and preference for comfort. If you have problems such as a dry throat, strap irritation or air leakage with your current mask, it’s best to try another design. An ill-fitting mask cannot provide the same quality of treatment from the CPAP machine as a secure one. Try various models to determine which one works best and speak to a sleep expert for mask advice.

Finding a comfortable mask can seem challenging with so many options, but it shouldn’t take long to find a mask that suits your individual needs. You can find different CPAP models, masks, supplies and helpful advice when you visit an online CPAP distributor.


This post contains affiliate links and I may receive a commission, at no additional cost to you, should you purchase through one of my links. Please see my disclosure for more information.

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TWL Working Mom

Jennifer is the Owner of TWL and Co-Owner of a Influencer Facebook Group Influential Mamas.  Along with blogging + freelance writing and selling Zyia Activewear, she is a mom, army wife and full-time teacher. Jennifer lives in Washington State and is a born + raised New Yorker. In her spare time, she loves traveling, yoga, the beach, writing, listening to books and drinking coffee.

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