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Best Spray Paint Masks 2024: 5 respirators for avoiding toxic fumes

man wearing a respirator mask whilst spray painting a mural
Written by Richard September

Stay safe from toxic fumes with our expertly-chosen list of the top 5 best respirator masks for spray painting.

Safety is the top priority when working with spray paints.

Luckily, using a respirator mask is one of the most effective ways of avoiding toxic fumes. They’re pretty inexpensive too considering how much protection they offer.

With so many respirators on the market though, it can be hard to choose which one’s best for you.

In this guide, we cover our most recommended masks for spray painting so you can make the right choice – no matter your project.

So whether you’re a graffiti or street artist, airbrushing models or using a paint sprayer for home improvement – here are 5 of the best spray paint masks you can find right now.

Stick around until the end where we cover our top 3 things to know before buying a spray paint mask. Plus, some top tips for when you go to use it.

5 Best Respirator Masks for Spray Painting

Let’s get straight to the list.

Here’s our breakdown of the best spray paint masks we can recommend with confidence.

1. Top Pick: 3M Spray Paint Respirator

3M Spray Paint Respirator

The 3M Spray Paint Respirator 4251+ is our top pick as the best overall respirator mask for spray painting.

As a maintenance-free mask (which means it’s disposable), it’s perfect for spray paint projects where you need a hassle-free mask.

If you’re working on a smaller project, working outdoors or not planning on using it frequently, this is the ideal mask.

It’s specifically designed for spray painting too, offering A1 protection against organic gases and vapours such as solvent-based paint (most commercial spray paints contain high VOCs).

As it’s a half mask, it won’t cover your eyes – just your nose and mouth. Although these are the most important areas to be covered when working with aerosol paint, goggles can also be worn with the respirator mask for added protection.

As the mask is maintenance-free, you’ll know it’s time to dispose of it when breathing it becomes harder – indicating that the filter is saturated. Depending on usage, expect the mask to last a few days up to a few months.

If you’re new to spray painting and want a straightforward easy-to-use mask, we recommend going with the 3M Spray Paint Respirator.

Reasons to buyReasons to avoid
+ Maintenance-free– Not great for big projects
+ Compatible with goggles– Can’t be reused
+ Specifically engineered for spray painting
+ Complies with European Standards (CE Mark 0086)

2. JSP Force 8 Half Mask Respirator

JSP Force 8 Half Mask Respirator

The JSP Force 8 Half Mask is our best reusable respirator mask for spray painting.

It’s perfect for avoiding aerosol fumes from spray paint and has a comfortable fit for most thanks to its adjustable straps.

However, unlike the previous 3M Spray Paint Respirator, the filters can be changed on JSP Force 8.

This makes it the better option if you plan on using the mask for a long period of time, as it will be cheaper to replace the filters in the long run. Some may find replacing the filters inconvenient, however, as it requires maintenance.

Speaking of which, the filters in this mask fit tight, which is definitely what you want so that fumes can’t get in. Just be sure to line up the arrows on the filters and the mask and push them in well to secure the filter in place.

The JSP Force 8 also contains PressToCheck filters which allow the filters to be tested before spray painting, which we think is an excellent safety feature.

Reasons to buyReasons to avoid
+ Replaceable filters– Filters need to be maintained
+ PressToCheck safety system
+ Comfortable fit
+ Compatible with goggles

3. Trend STEALTH Respirator Mask

Trend STEALTH Respirator Mask

The Trend STEALTH Respirator Mask is our best budget respirator for spray painting. It comes in at a cheaper price point than the last two masks whilst also offering a great level of protection.

The Trend STEALTH is a reusable mask, with the option to purchase replacement filters. This makes it a good option if you’re planning on using it long term. Plus, the mask also comes with an extra replaceable filter.

Unlike the previous two masks, the Trend STEALTH is available in two sizes: S-M and M-L. We’ve found the M-L to be the best fit for most adults.

However, if you have a smaller face size or want to wear glasses with the mask, the S-M size may fit better.

Despite the lower price, it’s a great mask for spray painting projects. If you’re working on a budget, the Trend STEALTH might be the respirator for you.

Reasons to buyReasons to avoid
+ Cheap– M-L size isn’t ideal for glasses
+ Replaceable filters
+ Good breathability
+ Good quality

4. Dräger X-plore® 3300 Respirator

Dräger X-plore® 3300 Respirator

The Dräger X-plore® 3300 Respirator takes the spot as our best premium respirator for spray painting owing to its robust components, comfort and reusability.

Dräger is one of the most recognised brands in medical and safety technology – earning the trust of professionals across the globe since 1889.

The spray painting version of their Dräger X-plore 3300 lives up to its quality and is ideal for graffiti, airbrushing, resin work and woodwork amongst other aerosol art.

We found this to be one of the best systems for breathability which is likely due to their high quality, specially designed filters for spray painting. It also offers a good level of comfort for long painting sessions, with adjustable straps to fit most adults.

If you’re looking for a robust respirator mask that’s sure to last for future painting projects, we recommend choosing the Dräger X-plore 3300.

Reasons to buyReasons to avoid
+ Robust, high quality build– Relatively expensive
+ Great comfort– Filters are a bit more expensive than similar options
+ Designed for spray painting
+ Compatible with goggles
+ Selection of sizes available

5. Faburo Respirator Mask with Goggles

Faburo Respirator Mask with Goggles

The Faburo Respirator Mask with Goggles is our best respirator for extra protection as the goggles included in the set will also protect your eyes.

For spray painters or airbrush artists who want a full mask effect for added protection whilst also keeping costs low, the Faburo mask and goggles set is a convenient option to choose.

The mask is reusable too and comes with a replaceable filter included. You can expect a high level of protection as the dual filtration system effectively blocks out 96% of organic vapours, amongst other particles.

The goggles included are also large enough for glasses to fit underneath, depending on the size of your frames.

Overall, it’s a very comfortable mask that offers excellent protection when using aerosol paints. For extra protection, choose the Faburo Mask & Goggle set.

Reasons to buyReasons to avoid
+ Includes goggles for extra protection– Only available in one size
+ Good comfort
+ Includes replacement filter
+ Inexpensive mask set

3 things to know before buying a spray paint mask

Now you know a bit more about the best spray paint masks available, let’s take a look at a few things to know before you pick one up.

1. Half mask vs full mask

There are two common types of respirator masks available: half mask and full mask.

A half mask covers only the nose and mouth, which leaves the eyes exposed. Full masks, on the other hand, cover the entire face for increased protection.

For spray painting, half masks are the preferred option by most hobby artists and painters. This is because half masks don’t impair your vision when painting and also allow for glasses to be worn comfortably with the mask.

Instead, full masks are more essential for someone handling hazardous chemicals and/or to protect the person from tiny dust particles. These materials can be more damaging to the eyes compared to aerosol fumes.

However, if you want to be extra safe when spray painting, use a full mask.

For maximum flexibility, a good hack is to use a half mask with a separate pair of goggles. Wearing these together gives a full mask effect, whilst also having the option to protect just your mouth and nose if you need to.

2. Indoor vs outdoor painting

Although it’s advised to wear a respirator mask regardless of whether you’re painting indoors or outdoors, it’s especially important to wear a respirator indoors.

Solvent particles emitted from aerosol paint have less chance to escape into the atmosphere indoors compared to painting outside. This means you’re more at risk of inhaling toxic fumes when painting indoors without a respirator.

Exposure to aerosol fumes can have some nasty side effects, like feeling dizzy or lightheaded.

So regardless of whether you’re painting indoors or outdoors, make sure you’re protected by using a respirator mask (but especially indoors!).

It’s also worth noting that respirator filters will saturate more quickly indoors compared to outdoors when spray painting.

Take this into account when choosing the type of respirator you need as disposable respirators may not always be appropriate for extended indoor work.

3. Disposable vs reusable mask

A disposable respirator mask (also known as a maintenance-free respirator) means that the filter in the mask cannot be replaced with a new one. Once the filter has been saturated the mask can be disposed of.

This is unlike a reusable respirator mask, which allows for the filters to be replaced. Replacement filters can usually be bought online for less than the cost of replacing the mask, depending on the respirator brand.

If you only need a respirator mask for a small project or are only using it occasionally for smaller amounts of time, we recommend choosing a disposable mask for spray painting.

If you’re using the mask for a big job or are planning on using it a lot in the future, a reusable mask may be more economical in the long term. You’ll be able to find replacement filters for less than replacing a disposable mask if the filter runs out.

We’ve included both disposable and reusable masks on our list of best respirator masks for spray painting. So consider how much you may be using the mask before you pick one up.

Do I need to wear a respirator for spray painting?

Yes. It is highly advised to wear a respirator mask for spray painting to avoid organic fumes and tiny paint particles from entering your respiratory system. Inhaling toxic fumes can affect your health, so it’s best to minimise these risks and wear a respirator.

It’s especially important to wear a respirator and ventilate the room when spray painting indoors. This is because organic fumes and paint particles have less chance of escaping into the atmosphere compared to outdoor spray painting.

Unless you’re using spray paint with a water based formula, you should always protect yourself by wearing a respirator mask.

Top tips for using a respirator mask

Now you have a better idea of the respirator mask you need for your spray painting project, here are a few top tips to get the best use out of it:

1. Use a respirator designed for spray painting

Be sure to look for a mask that’s specifically designed for spray painting (such as the 3M Spray Paint Respirator 4251+) or explicitly says it’s suitable for spray painting.

Although all respirators will offer some layer of protection, some are designed to work better with dust or chemicals.

2. Reusable means maintenance

Although useable masks are the best option for someone who’s going to be using a respirator frequently, removable filters can be annoying to deal with.

For a hassle-free experience, a disposable respirator mask can be the better option – especially if you don’t plan on using it a lot.

3. Be mindful of facial hair

Beards and respirator masks sadly don’t mix well. This is because respirators must be touching skin to create a seal that keeps toxic fumes from aerosol paint out.

Consider going clean-shaven for maximum protection before getting started on your project.

Tried one of the respirators we’ve recommended? Leave a comment below and let us know your experience.

About the author

Richard September

Growing up in London, I've always been fascinated by the graffiti that covers the cityscape. From seeing it around where I lived to reading it on the train lines, I was hooked straight away. For over 15 years, I've been painting graffiti and immersing myself in the culture. I graduated from the University of Sussex in 2019 with a BA in Sociology and Media Studies. My final year research project, entitled "Vigilant Vandalism or Mindless Mischief: A Narrative Analysis of Graffiti Writers in London & Brighton", exposed me to the lives of graffiti writers in the field and better shaped my understanding of the culture. I created Graff Storm in 2021 with the mission to help new artists learn more about graffiti culture, find the right tools and avoid toy status.


  • I have several 3M respirators that I’ve got employed in dusty, paint, and chemical environments. I used different filters reckoning on my needs. you would like to decide on the proper size to attenuate leaks around the nose. Elastic bands stretch with use, so you wish to stay tightening them. far better than cheap nose cups. you’ll easily wash the respirator body after it gets dirty. If you wear prescription glasses, the fit of the respirator with the goggles isn’t superb because the goggles cannot rest on the bridge of the nose.

  • I also had a Honeywell mask. I was satisfied with the quality and function. I used this filter when I painted the house. I haven’t had any complaints from sanding residue or paint fumes. The adjustment strap was easy to adjust even when wearing gloves.

  • I’ve several respirators for spray painting that I’ve used in surroundings with dust, spot makeup, and chemicals. I used different pollutants depending on my requirements. You need to choose the right size to minimize leaks around the nose. Elastic bands stretch with use, so you need to keep tensing them. Much better than cheap nose mugs.

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