This Apparel Brand's Self-Cleaning Face Masks Already Hit the Market
We currently find ourselves in a world where wearing face masks is just part of the routine if you need to leave home. It used to be phone-keys-wallet. Now it’s phone-keys-wallet-mask.
Because of that, masks have become a staple of promotional marketing for artists, bands and plenty of other brands. Also, the scientific community has been developing new ways to keep people safe while they wear masks. And keeping masks clean and safe for wearing again is a real concern.
Last week, we reported that a team of scientists at a university in Israel created a mask that uses a USB phone charger to clean itself with heat. That hasn’t hit the market just yet, but apparel brand (multee)project is already shipping out a new face mask that includes self-cleaning technology.
According to Hypebeast, the mask is water- and dirt-repellant and machine washable, but also includes “self-cleaning NanoSphere” material, which was developed by Schoeller Textiles to create structure on the surface of the masks that minimizes contact area.
— garage-kid the raoG@Stay Home, Stay Safe. (@G76whizkidz) June 24, 2020
The mask also includes a pocket for an additional filter.
(multi)project manufactures the masks in downtown Los Angeles, and said it will donate 20 percent of the proceeds to #GetUsPPE, which works to provide frontline workers the protective equipment they need. The masks currently cost $28.
A few months ago, when the idea of face masks seemed new for a lot of people, we reported on the different types, and since then the world of face masks has expanded astronomically. We’ve moved so quickly from just disposable surgical masks and cotton masks.
The apparel industry has jumped at this opportunity not only to provide face masks in a time of need, but to innovate the idea and build a better mouse trap, so to speak. This one from (multee)projects, for example, has features you’d expect to see on high-end athletic apparel or something, like four-way stretch construction and this water-repellant material. Masks are pretty much just another category of accessories at this point.
Masks are going to stick around for a while (despite pushback from a small number of people). Apparel companies and scientists have taken advantage of that by providing comfortable, stylish and effective products for people to use. And having such an abundance of mask options has made it so people aren’t buying up N95 masks that health care workers so desperately need.
What also makes this particular story interesting is that it seems like it happened overnight. We were getting excited recently at the prospect of self-cleaning masks, but this one just sort of appeared and already hit the market.
The question of how effective its self-cleaning actually is still remains, but as the experts said in March, any mask is better than no mask.