Background As the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic accelerates, the supply of personal protective equipment remains under strain. To combat shortages, re-use of surgical masks and filtering facepiece respirators has been recommended. Prior decontamination is paramount to the re-use of these typically single-use only items and, without compromising their integrity, must guarantee inactivation of SARS-CoV-2 and other contaminating pathogens. Aim We provide information on the effect of time-dependent passive decontamination (infectivity loss over time during room temperature storage in a breathable bag) and evaluate inactivation of a SARS-CoV-2 surrogate and a non-enveloped model virus as well as mask and respirator integrity following active multiple-cycle vaporised hydrogen peroxide (VHP), ultraviolet germicidal irradiation (UVGI), and dry heat (DH) decontamination. Methods Masks and respirators, inoculated with infectious porcine respiratory coronavirus or murine norovirus, were submitted to passive decontamination or single or multiple active decontamination cycles; viruses were recovered from sample materials and viral titres were measured via TCID.sub.50 assay. In parallel, filtration efficiency tests and breathability tests were performed according to EN standard 14683 and NIOSH regulations. Results and discussion Infectious porcine respiratory coronavirus and murine norovirus remained detectable on masks and respirators up to five and seven days of passive decontamination. Single and multiple cycles of VHP-, UVGI-, and DH were shown to not adversely affect bacterial filtration efficiency of masks. Single- and multiple UVGI did not adversely affect respirator filtration efficiency, while VHP and DH induced a decrease in filtration efficiency after one or three decontamination cycles. Multiple cycles of VHP-, UVGI-, and DH slightly decreased airflow resistance of masks but did not adversely affect respirator breathability. VHP and UVGI efficiently inactivated both viruses after five, DH after three, decontamination cycles, permitting demonstration of a loss of infectivity by more than three orders of magnitude. This multi-disciplinal approach provides important information on how often a given PPE item may be safely reused.