Indian fashion mask(uerades) into new Coronavirus trend

What started off as a necessity during a pandemic outbreak, masks or face covers, have now become the latest muse for Indian fashion. With masks becoming a tool for survival now, Indian brands and fashionistas have officially pinned it as the latest addition to their ‘haute couture’ lists and how. From simple cotton masks to outfit coordinated customised ones, masks are fast becoming the new ‘talk of the town’ fashion statement. Uncommon Talks finds out more about the latest Indian fashion masks obsession.

indian fashion mask
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'Haute Mask': Biz with a social cause

Ridhi Raman, owner of Revealbyridzz, an Indian-based online store that deals with curated masks, tells us that “till we get a permanent cure or vaccine for Coronavirus, masks are here to stay.” The brand offers a wide variety of range of masks, right from breathable cotton prints to masks catering to every occasion. 

“I have been approached by people asking suggestions on how to coordinate their outfits with which of the masks. In the US the trend has been catching up for a while now. I took this up out of my own interest initially, as there was a dire need for masks back then, but I never estimated it to click this soon as a business model,” adds Ridhi, who is currently pursuing her higher studies but has managed to build a good response from across India for her brand. 

The brand offers each mask at Rs. 50, which are specially curated by underprivileged women, creating job opportunities from the comfort of their homes, especially when the economy is at a standstill. “By creating odd jobs for them, we have fabrics procured and tailors in place and soon plan to come up with quirky customised masks with special quotes or names printed on them. Silk masks for weddings and special occasions are also on our to do list,” she added. Revealbyridzz can be reached on 09384835921.

Wonder why trendsetters are becoming choosy and picky with a simple protective gear, like masks? “Now that it’s going to be an essential part of our lives, day in and day out, might as well look good right,” says Nikita Vishal Bhaiya, who is an Instagram entrepreneur and runs @bee__nikki, an online store. While she thinks that adding a little bit of fashion potion to safety gears wouldn’t harm anybody and make lives a tad bit interesting everyday. 

“I have not seen many artistic prints out there, so the masks offered by us, mainly revolve around art. I’m planning to come up with masks for kids as young as 3-4 year olds, along with teenagers and men, with curated prints especially catered for them,” adds Nikita, who currently offers masks as packs of 5 costing Rs. 315. The inner-layer is made of cotton and the outer being lint-free. @bee__nikki can be reached on 09840473875. 

On one hand, home tailors, lifestyle brands and fashion designers are cashing on the rising demand for fashionable face masks, textile manufacturers are nowhere behind. While COVID-19 struck almost every industry, the import and export sales of the Indian textile industry too was badly hit due to extensive lockdown periods. The new norm, daily essential has now become an inseparable accessory, that is here to stay the pandemic phase and beyond. 

Domestic market has grabbed onto the opportunity of the rising market demand of masks and leading textile and fashion brands have now added creative masks matching their latest collections. Shoppers Stop, Fabindia, VIP Clothing, Zodiac, and Aditya Birla Fashion and Retail brands such as Peter England, Allen Solly, Louis Phillipe and Van Heusen, to name a few. International runway brands like Prada, Louis Vuitton and Dior were some of the early adopters of the trend globally. 

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The new wedding essential

Draped sarees, trail gowns, veils, turbans, lehengas, sherwanis and face masks. Spot the odd one out from the list? Well, this unusual accessory is now the new norm being diligently used by Indian brides and grooms during their wedding rituals. The new must-have fashion item has now made its lavish entrance into the season’s wedding collections too. 

From mehendi to sangeet, to the last round of phera’s, wedding outfits are now being colour-coordinated with jewelled masks. Blends of similar fabrics are being used by designers to incorporate the theme into face masks as well. 

Images maybe subject to copyright.
Images maybe subject to copyright.

Not just brides and grooms but even the relatives and family members, at Indian weddings are seen donning colourful masks with interesting words like ‘ladkewaale’ (team groom)  and ‘ladkiwaale’ (team bride) embellished on them. While many designers have taken on to this ‘temporary’ trend, some are against the idea of turning it into a business opportunity. 

Calling it a ‘situational’ trend, not all designers that have embraced the trend, believe that masks are an essential need and should be available without making any financial profits whatsoever. Despite this, the ‘big fat Indian weddings’ have not left a chance to make  this safety gear, a part of their big day, in the most grand manner possible. 

Fashion trends that once saw customised phone cases, t-shirts and pop-sockets, have now instantaneously stuck on to ‘masking’ into the latest style, if not forever but at least till the time a worldwide vaccine is found to end the COVID-19 virus. 

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