South Korea dropped indoor masking Monday. Japan has ditched them outdoors and is getting ready to unmask indoors soon, too. Taiwan is set to jettison its mandate later this month.

Mask mandates, once a ubiquitous feature of the coronavirus pandemic, are finally being let go in several countries in East Asia, where pandemic restrictions have lingered for much longer than in other parts of the world.

Wearing a mask comes with some discomfort, including hindering communication and fogging up glasses. Countries in Southeast Asia and Europe, as well as the United States, abandoned masking requirements months ago.