CHICO, Calif. - A Chico couple is using 3-D printers and an open-source design called ear savers to make masks more comfortable.
"The little prongs are here, so you hook your mask on the prong, said Carob Bradlyn. "Then you put your mask on and you wrap it around your head. Hook it on the prong on the back, and it goes around your ears on the back of the head."
Bradlyn and Justin Cooper started printing ear savers in their own home during the pandemic.
"There's one with blue and -- how can you go wrong there are so many choices," said their daughter during the interview.
Bradlyn started by making them for her friends and family, then orders for more quickly took off.
"My friend who works in health care said she was getting a rash behind her ears, and ever since she received the ear savers from us she no longer has the rash. Anywhere around a thousand orders."
And it's not just here in Chico where they're popular.
"Florida, Arizona, Texas and Georgia."
And they plan to keep going for everyone's benefit.
"Enjoy it have fun, and hopefully help people out," said Cooper.
"On a personal level, I was feeling really stressed and had anxiety from the whole pandemic," shared Bradlyn. "Making these ear savers and giving them to those who need them gave me a purpose, and helped me overcome that pandemic stress."
Even if there are some disagreements.
"I call them ear savers but Justin calls them masks savers. It was the name of the file we downloaded, so to each their own."
The couple makes the ear savers with a very flexible filament that is a little more expensive than other filaments, but they say it's all worth it for the comfort. To get some ear savers for yourself, Click Here to contact Carob Bradlyn through Facebook.