6 Popular Stores You Can't Enter Without a Face Mask

Despite differing state mandates, some stores are requiring customers to wear masks nationwide.

Though the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has been recommending face coverings for months to help stop the spread of COVID-19, that recommendation is not a countrywide requirement. However, to up face mask use in the U.S., many cities, counties, and states have issued their own mandates requiring residents to wear face masks and for businesses to enforce that requirement. And some companies have decided to take things a step further, requiring customers nationwide to wear face coverings—no matter if the store is in a state that mandates them or not. These are the popular stores that you can't enter anywhere in the U.S. without a face mask. And for more face mask mandates, check out The 10 States With the Strictest Face Mask Laws.


Special lines for shoppers at Costco during COVID-19 pandemic. Coronavirus virus and panic buying concept

Costco has required employees to wear masks throughout the pandemic, but since May 4, the company also started requiring its customers to wear face coverings. The only exceptions are those under the age of two or anyone with a medical condition preventing them from wearing a mask.

"We know some members may find this inconvenient or objectionable, but under the circumstances we believe the added safety is worth any inconvenience," Costco CEO Craig Jelinek wrote in a statement on the company's website. "This is not simply a matter of personal choice; a face covering protects not just the wearer, but others too." And for more on shopping after COVID, check out The Major Change You'll See at Stores the Next Time You Go Shopping.

American Eagle Outfitters

La Jolla, California, USA - September 25, 2011: Store exterior of American Eagle Outfitters. Based in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania it is a well known clothing and accessories retailer.

Popular retailer American Eagle Outfitters is requiring customers to wear face coverings inside both American Eagle and Aerie stores in "an effort to help keep [their] associates and customers safe."

However, if you do not have a mask, the AE website says that one will be available for you to use. A "warm and friendly welcome station offering masks and hand sanitizer to all customers" will be set up in all of their reopened stores. And for more ways your retail experience may chance due to COVID-19, check out the 7 Things You Won't See at Retail Stores Ever Again After Coronavirus.


verizon company name origins

Verizon has opened up select stores across the country to help customers with service, technology, and general phone-related needs. And in all of these reopened stores, Verizon customers are required to wear face coverings at all times.


exterior of an apple store

Just like Verizon, Apple is requiring their customers to wear face masks, as well. After reopening nearly 100 stores on May 17, Apple issued a statement explaining that "face coverings will be required for all of [their] teams and customers." And on top of that, the store "will provide [masks] to customers who don't bring their own." And for more on how your Apple experience will chance, check out the 9 Things You Won't See at the Apple Store Ever Again.

Whole Foods

Fairfax: Green Whole Foods Market grocery store sign on exterior building in city in Virginia with people walking and autumn displays of pumpkins for Halloween

On the grocery store front, Whole Foods is also requiring patrons to wear face masks nationwide. The Whole Foods website states that they are "requesting that all customers wear masks while shopping in our stores to protect the health and safety of our team members and communities." However, like Apple and American Eagle, if you do not have a mask, Whole Foods "will be providing face masks at the entrance of all stores." And for more up-to-date information, sign up for our daily newsletter.

The Fresh Market

the fresh market grocery store

Like other popular grocery stores chains, The Fresh Market is also requiring customers to wear face masks. In a May 12 statement, the company said that all team members are required to wear face masks, and they ask that guests do, too. "Please be sure before you enter our stores to have a face covering," the statement reads. Their website adds that "bandanas and scarves" are also acceptable in order to meet the face mask requirement.


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