Heard It on the Thoughtline: You Want a Mask With Flair
I Heard It on MR Thoughtline: “Where Can I Find a Cloth Mask With Flair?”
05.11.20

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The necessity of wearing a mask when going outside has become part of our cultural reality—and thus, by default, it has become part of our sartorial reality, too. The best masks for civilians are those made from cloth (leave surgical masks and N95s to healthcare professionals and essential workers). And while the functional significance of any protective mask makes it much more than an object of style, there’s still room—and desire, we’ve found—to inject some personality into the equation. This was made clear during a recent conversation on MR Thoughtline, during which a subscriber asked: “Where can I find an effective cloth mask with flair?”

According to the CDC, an effective face mask should fit snugly but comfortably against the sides of your face, can be secured with ties or ear loops, includes multiple layers of fabric, allows for breathing without restriction, and can be laundered and machine dried with damaging or changing the shape. (Check out their website for tutorials on how to DIY a mask that conforms with these guidelines—they offer instructions for using a sewing machine, a T-shirt, or a bandana.) If you’d like to purchase a mask from a brand that is donating to charity–or from an independent Etsy seller making and shipping masks directly–see below for a rundown of efforts to give back, and scroll to the bottom for a curated, flair-centric shopping edit courtesy of our market strategist Elizabeth.

Man Repeller will be donating any affiliate revenue generated from this story to MasksOn.org, a non-profit working to mass-produce reusable, sanitizable Emergency Use face shields for clinicians who do not have access to FDA-cleared equipment.


Charitable Efforts

Reformation – Partnered with the city of Los Angeles and Mayor Eric Garcetti on LA Protects, an initiative to organize local manufacturers to make five million non-medical masks for essential workers.
Collina Strada – For each mask purchased, Collina Strada will provide five masks to healthcare workers in New York City.
Outdoor Voices – 100% of proceeds will benefit Direct Relief, a humanitarian aid organization.
Christine Alcalay – Making masks to donate to health professional across the United States.
Rowing Blazers – Donating one mask to the NYC Food Bank for every mask sold.
Clare V. – Donating non-medical-grade masks to frontline and essential workers.
Batsheva – 25% of proceeds go to NY Food Bank.
Misa – Partnered with L.A. Protects to produce non-medical grade masks for essential businesses and in limited quantities to the general public.
Nili Lotan – 100% of profit goes to NYU Langone.
String King – Donating both two-ply washable cloth face masks and three-ply disposable 3-layer face masks for free and at reduced cost.
Steele Canvas x Food52 – For every mask sold, Steele Canvas and Food52 will donate a second mask to medical facilities across the U.S.—or you can choose to buy two masks and together, and they’ll donate both.
LAMade – Over 22,000 masks donated.
Baggu – For every pack of masks sold, Baggu is donating a pack of surgical masks to healthcare workers through Masks4Medicine.
Sanctuary – Sanctuary has produce over 5 million medical grade masks to support the medical community.

One for One: Brands Donating 1 Mask for Each Mask Ordered

Abacaxi
Lykke Wullf
LoveShackFancy
Araks
Hyer Goods
Casetify
Camp Collection
J. Papa


And now, masks arranged lovingly, by style…

Perfectly Patterned

With elastic backs…

See All 16

With adjustable ties…

See All 10

Solidly Satisfying

With elastic backs…

See All 11

With adjustable ties…

See All 8

If you know of any other brands or designers who are rising to the occasion by making or donating masks to those in need, please feel free to shout them out in the comments—we’d love to hear about it.

Feature Photos via Collina Strada.

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