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16 Stores That Won’t Let You in Without a Face Mask

Be prepared to keep your nose and mouth covered before shopping in these stores.

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Coronavirus Pandemic Causes Climate Of Anxiety And Changing Routines In AmericaSpencer Platt/Getty Images

As various places begin to reopen while restrictions loosen during the COVID-19 pandemic, companies are trying to navigate how to resume business while keeping both customers and employees safe. Regulations concerning wearing face masks differ from state-to-state and even city-to-city, but some stores have made it mandatory to wear face coverings regardless of any laws saying otherwise. Read on for the stores that have made it clear they will not serve anyone who doesn’t have their nose and mouth covered.

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According to a statement issued by Costco, in order to protect guests and employees, everyone entering the premises must wear a face covering that covers their mouth and nose at all times, effective May 4.

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Whole Foods

A statement issued by Whole Foods states, “We are requesting that all customers wear masks while shopping in our stores to protect the health and safety of our team members and communities. Whole Foods Market will be providing face masks at the entrance of all stores for customers who do not have their own face covering.” Make sure you know how to dispose of face masks and gloves properly.

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People stand in a socially distanced line outside the Apple...SOPA Images/Getty Images


As Apple stores are beginning to reopen, face coverings will be required for all staff and customers to enter the space. Customers who don’t bring their own mask will be provided with one at the door along with a temperature screening.

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TJ Maxx - Bridgewater Falls Lifestyle Shopping CenterJames Leynse/Getty Images

T.J. Maxx

T.J. Maxx requires and expects all associates and customers to wear a face covering in stores no matter the location to provide universal comfort to their community. Read up on these helpful tips for wearing a face mask in hot weather.

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Ralphs Grocery Store SignWolterk/Getty Images


If customers attempt to enter a Ralphs grocery store without a face covering, they will be asked to return to their car to find some sort of protection for their nose and mouth.

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A Sign Outside of a Supermarket Asks Customers to Wear A Face CoveringNewsday LLC/Getty Images

The Fresh Market

Since April 14, customers have been required to wear a mask before entering any of The Fresh Market stores. Find out the everyday habits that could (and should) change with coronavirus.

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Daily Life In New York City Amid Coronavirus OutbreakAlexi Rosenfeld/Getty Images


Some Targets across the country may refuse service to customers without a face mask but will have signs posted on whether or not a face covering is required. A Target representative told TODAY, “We are encouraging healthy hygiene habits among guests, as guided by the CDC, and in areas where local governments are asking residents to wear masks, we have added signage and stationed team members outside stores to remind guests to wear masks while shopping.” Don’t miss these signs that a store isn’t protecting against coronavirus.

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Florida, Miami Beach, Walgreens pharmacy, Social distancing at check out counter, with shopper and cashier both wearing PPE, face masks and glovesJeff Greenberg/Getty Images


Unsurprisingly, Walgreens is another store that requires a face mask upon entry.

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American Eagle reopeningThe Washington Post/Getty Images

American Eagle

According to the American Eagle website, the clothing store requires both customers and employees to wear facial coverings at all times when inside any location. Customers without a mask can purchase one. Learn the things you shouldn’t do at reopened restaurants.

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New York City Continues To Idle During Coronavirus ShutdownRob Kim/Getty Images


Customers are required to wear a face mask inside all Verizon stores while also abiding by their other social distancing practices.

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Coronavirus Pandemic Causes Climate Of Anxiety And Changing Routines In AmericaBruce Bennett/Getty Images


A statement issued by Shoprite says, “Where mandated by state-issued executive orders or local ordinances, stores will also require customers to wear masks or face coverings while they are shopping with us unless they are medically unable to do so.”

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In a new statement from Walmart, as of July 20, 2020, all shoppers will be required to wear a face covering while in the store. Walmart has also created the new role of Health Ambassador, someone who will be stationed near the entrance of the store reminding people to cover their face before going inside. The CDC is recommending face coverings everywhere including visiting friends.

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Sam’s Club

Following the same guidelines as Walmart, Sam’s Club will also be requiring masks to enter any location. Instead of Health Ambassadors, Sam’s Club will have trained associates stationed at the single open entrance to the store to enforce face coverings.

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Effective beginning July 21, 2020, Publix will require all customers to cover their face before entering any store. “With the number of coronavirus cases continuing to grow and current CDC guidance indicating face coverings can help slow the spread of COVID-19, we believe requiring face coverings in our stores is another way we can do our part to help protect our communities,” says Publix Director of Communications Maria Brous.

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Beginning July 20, 2020, all shoppers entering any CVS location will be required to wear a mask because of the recent spike in cases of COVID-19. “To be clear, we’re not asking our store employees to play the role of enforcer,” reads a statement issued by their Chief Operating Officer. “What we are asking is that customers help protect themselves and those around them by listening to the experts and heeding the call to wear a face covering.”

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Home Depot

In an announcement from Home Depot, customers will be mandated to wear a face mask beginning July 22. They have incorporated “Social Distancing Captains” to their stores and will provide masks to shoppers who may not have one. As an alternative to shopping in stores, Home Depot is providing the alternative of curbside pickup or home delivery. Next, see how much longer we will need to wear masks when venturing outside.

For more on this developing situation, including how life might be different post-lockdown, see our comprehensive Coronavirus Guide.

Emma Taubenfeld
Emma Taubenfeld is an assistant editor for Reader’s Digest who focuses on digital lifestyle topics such as memes, social media captions, pick-up lines, and cute pets. When she’s not working, you can find Emma reading corny young adult novels, creating carefully curated playlists, and figuring out how to spice up boxed mac and cheese.