Why the mandated wearing of masks is not an attack on your civil liberty.
I will preface the following by saying; I understand the desire to not wear a mask and will not deny I have avoided it wherever I can. I find it uncomfortable, awkward, hard to judge my own speaking volume, hard to express myself, and I get the awful feeling that everyone is looking at me (although this is diminished somewhat the more people around who are also wearing masks). I understand your aversion to it, but I have heard more than once the argument that the government mandating the wearing of face coverings is against the rights of the individual, and an impingement on civil liberties. This, as you will see, I do not think is an argument which holds even the smallest amount of water, and is the argument I will be addressing below.
Whether you realise it or not, your notion of civil liberty and “[The] limits of the power which can be legitimately exercised by society over the individual,” are very likely drawn from, or at least expressed best in the 1859 essay “On Liberty” by John Stewart Mill. While it is overly wordy, uses too many commas and can be, let’s just say, ‘racially insensitive’ at times, it lays out explicitly and eloquently when and why it is right for a government or majority to impose its will on an individual. While we do not stick to his ideas perfectly in modern society, anyone laying claim to their “civil liberty” when refusing to do as the government mandates, is essentially appealing to the ideas expressed in this essay. The issue being that the majority of people doing so have not read it, or likely even heard of it. I am not claiming to be an expert on the text, the history of individual liberty or epidemiology, but I do have a background understanding, and I’ve read everything I will quote/cite.
It is worth starting with what a simple face mask is actually effective at doing, that is: stopping the large droplets expelled by the wearer from travelling through the air towards other people. Almost no face covering will be perfectly effective, but even a thin layer of fabric will catch some larger droplets. The size of the droplets here is important since the majority of face coverings will not stop smaller droplets. When are the droplets largest? When they are recently expelled from your mouth, and when the humidity is higher, reducing the evaporation of fluid from the mass of the droplet. The longer a droplet is in the air, the smaller it gets, and the less likely it is to be caught in a face covering. A mask directly in front of the mouth and nose, will not only catch droplets before they can spend a long time in the air, it also creates a more humid environment [around your mouth and nose] in which the droplet is less likely to desiccate and reduce in size before it can be trapped by the mask. If a droplet has traveled from someone else to you, mask wearer, it has very likely been in the air long enough to have desiccated to a point that the droplet is small enough to pass through your simple face covering (Kähler and Hain, 2020). That is not to say it 100% will, but the chances are much higher than if the other person had been wearing a mask in the first place (Jayaweera et al., 2020).
There are lots of factors around mask efficacy, and all of the above could be bunk, but the following statement seems, from my reading, to be solidly true: The mask you are wearing is doing less to protect yourself from others than it is to protect others from you. Regardless, even if mask wearing is equally effective at protecting the wearer and others, the mask is still protecting others as well as yourself, and as such, the civil liberties argument continues to not hold up.
If you are familiar with the concept of individual liberty as expressed by John Stewart Mill, you should be able to see where I’m going:
“The only part of the conduct of any one, for which he is amenable to society, is that which concerns others. In the part which merely concerns himself, his independence is, of right, absolute. Over himself, over his own body and mind, the individual is sovereign.”
If mask wearing is not primarily to protect yourself but to protect others, then it is completely compatible with classic liberalism and a concept of civil liberty for the government to exercise power over individuals to mandate the wearing of face coverings. “It’s an infringement on my civil liberty” is not a sound argument against the current rules. To finish I will leave you with the following quote from the same chapter as the above, with further justification for not only the face covering mandate, but the punishment of those who break the rule(s).
“I regard utility as the ultimate appeal on all ethical questions; but it must be utility in the largest sense, grounded on the permanent interests of man as a progressive being. Those interests, I contend, authorize the subjection of individual spontaneity to external control, only in respect to those actions of each, which concern the interest of other people. If any one does an act hurtful to others, there is a prima facie case for punishing him, by law, or, where legal penalties are not safely applicable, by general disapprobation. There are also many positive acts for the benefit of others, which he may rightfully be compelled to perform; such as, to give evidence in a court of justice; to bear his fair share in the common defence, or in any other joint work necessary to the interest of the society of which he enjoys the protection; and to perform certain acts of individual beneficence, such as saving a fellow-creature’s life, or interposing to protect the defenceless against ill-usage, things which whenever it is obviously a man’s duty to do, he may rightfully be made responsible to society for not doing.” 
 — Mill, John Stuart. On Liberty and Other Essays (p. 5).
 — Mill, John Stuart. On Liberty and Other Essays (p. 10).
Jayaweera, M., Perera, H., Gunawardana, B. and Manatunge, J., 2020. Transmission of COVID-19 virus by droplets and aerosols: A critical review on the unresolved dichotomy. Environmental Research, p.109819.
Kähler, C.J. and Hain, R., 2020. Fundamental protective mechanisms of face masks against droplet infections. Journal of Aerosol Science, p.105617.