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To say it’s been an ‘interesting’ few months would be a gross understatement as life as we know it has been turned on its head. And oh how quickly we adapt. Now I don’t think twice now about grabbing a mask and a pair of gloves before heading out for essential reasons. With some countries starting to ease their imposed lockdown restrictions it has become increasingly clear we are not safe yet and that masks are going to be an essential everyday accessory for some months if not years to come.

As soon as it became apparent just what the virus was capable of business owners around the world quickly pivoted their models to design masks to meet the demand. From kits to make your own to designer creations humanity’s resilience has shown up in an attitude of ‘if we have to wear them, well then at least let’s make them interesting’. And designers have responded in true style.

As to be expected you can find many a wax cloth (African Print) mask, but for something with a bit more of an individual head-turning appeal these designers and brands are offering just that:

Anita Quansah
Reusable Washable Mixed African Print Weave Face Mask With Pom Poms And Rhinestones Anita Quansah

With a love of embellishment and adornment and driven by a mission to make every woman feel like a queen look no further than the London-based designer Anita Quansah’s regal creations. And as an added bonus made from recycling and using up materials they are sustainable too.

ETHNIK by T. O.
Ethnik by t o leather mask tan


Tunde Owolabi the designer behind ETHNIK creates modern fashion and footwear accessory collections made from a handwoven Yoruba fabric called Aso Oke. For his futuristic-looking face mask range, Tunde has used leather and lined them with interchangeable fabrics.

Studio One Eighty Nine
Studio 189 Cotton Face Mask Made in Ghana

Studio 189 the ethical fashion brand founded by Rosario Dawson and Abrima Erwiah is producing face masks made from the leftover cotton used to create their collections. Producing the face masks is helping to keep their employees in Accra in work. The company is also supplying local health workers, hospitals, and government. The masks come in a range of prints and colours and are washable.

– Tapiwa Matsinde

[Image credits: The images shown belong to from top and bottom: Studio One Eighty Nine; middle Anita Quansah; and ETHNIK by T.O.. If downloaded and used elsewhere please credit accordingly.]

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