Face IDSource: Rene Ritchie/iMore

What you need to know

  • Unlocking an iPhone with Face ID requires your eyes, nose, and mouth to be visible.
  • That means wearing face masks is a no-no.
  • But this face mask works just fine.

If there's one thing that every iPhone owner with a face mask has noticed since the coronavirus pandemic kicked in, it's that Face ID doesn't work when your face is obscured. That's by design, of course, but that doesn't make it any more fun to enter your passcode over and over. One product designer has found a way around the whole problem – you just can't get in on the action.

Danielle Baskin noticed that wearing a mask was a problem back in February, so set about finding a fix. After initially trying to just print a face onto a mask she realized that Face ID uses depth to recognize people – that's why it can't be fooled by a photograph of a person's face. The answer? Create a 3D mask with a nose and mouth on it.

Get an iPhone SE with Mint Mobile service for $30/mo

The Wall Street Journal's Joanna Stern picks up the story and it's absolutely worth a watch.

Once a 3D mask is created it can be added as an additional face within the Face ID settings. Once that's done the mask is recognized every time it's worn.

The downside? Baskin says she won't be making this available, although she might help out health professionals if there's a case for these masks to be used in medical facilities.

We may earn a commission for purchases using our links. Learn more.