Face masks get a face-lift thanks to luxury fashion brands
The singer, who often surprises the public with her unconventional outfits amazed viewers once again with her nine different mask stylings throughout the 2020 MTV Video Music Awards held in Los Angeles last month.
Although face masks are being worn to minimize infection risk amid the Covid-19 pandemic, people have started to express their individuality and personal sense of style through the essential face wear.
The fashion industry, which has been suffering amid the pandemic due to the closure of manufacturing plants and stores, has been releasing masks and mask-related items such as mask straps and face mask pouches, as a means to recoup some profits.
Luxury fashion houses, that had been passive in releasing face masks as fashion items for fear of looking like they were trying to profit from the crisis, have joined the masses.
“We are proud to be donating 20 percent from the selling price of each face mask to the Burberry Foundation Covid-19 Community Fund operated by The Burberry Foundation to support communities impacted by the pandemic globally,” the brand said.
"Its double-layered mask is made out of 100 percent organic cotton with an antibacterial coating, has excellent ventilation and can be reused several times thanks to its water-repellent finish," the company said.
American fashion brand Ralph Lauren will release both cloth and filtration masks on Sept. 15, which cost $39 and $49, respectively. The multilayered mask with a polyester shell and an inner lining lets users change the disposable filter easily, and the size is customizable so that the mask perfectly contours to the shape of the wearer’s face.
“All profits from the sale of the masks will be donated to the Covid-19 Solidarity Response Fund for WHO [the World Health Organization], powered by the UN Foundation, and the sales in the Taiwan region will be donated to a local beneficiary,” Ralph Lauren said.
While the brand's signature designs are the most obvious features that differentiate them from disposable masks, they are also more comfortable to wear than disposable masks as fashion companies produce their masks based on three-dimensional design tactics. By utilizing the latest fiber technology, additional features such as odor removing filters can also be applied.
However, there are voices of concern that say such fashion masks are not effective in filtering out the virus. Even if it is a reusable cloth mask, only those with replaceable filters are said to be safe. The best way to check whether a commercial face mask is safe is to look for the administrative markings that indicate its features.
BY YOO JI-YOEN, KIM YEON-AH [firstname.lastname@example.org]