The 3M VFlex 9105, as worn. Note the "bag like" pleated design.

The 3M VFlex is a line of disposable N95 respirators produced by the 3M Company. The VFlex has a unique, "bag-like" pleated design that increases breathability and allows the respirator to stretch more when the wearer is moving their mouth.

The VFlex is one of the most breathable non-vented disposable N95 respirators. In 3M's internal testing, the VFlex (model 1804) had a pressure drop of \(~ 5 mm\) of \(H_2O/cm^2\) at \(8 L/m\), lower than other tested respirators. In Aaron Collins' home mask testing, he found the VFlex 9105 to have a pressure drop of around \(0.13 in. H_2O\), the lowest pressure drop of any respirator masks he had tested.

In the US, the VFlex models are:

  • 9105 - the normal size VFlex.
  • 9105S - the small size VFlex.
  • 1804 - healthcare version of the VFlex which is cleared by the FDA as a surgical mask.
  • 1804S - small version of the healthcare VFlex.

Where to buy

Within the US, 3M authorized distributors can be found on 3M's website (see webpage for the VFlex standard size or the VFlex small size). These distributors typically sell the VFlex in quantities of 50 or more.

Digikey sells small quantities of VFlex respirators (search 9105 or 9105S to see if in stock) which is ideal for evaluation if a full 50-respirator box is out of budget.

Filter media

The VFlex filter media is said to be electret filter only, meaning that more aerosols will filter through the media than with electret/mechanical combination masks. Because of this, TSI says that the N95 companion Portacount should be used rather than the standard Portacount when fit testing the VFlex as an N95 respirator.

See also