future of fashion

COVID-19 has  sparked a wave in the use of disposable face masks and gloves—production is up about $800 million dollars from last year. And these throw-aways (masks and gloves) are adding dangerous amounts of waste. 75% of disposable face masks and other pandemic waste will end up in our oceans and our landfills.

News reports have pulled the haunting footage of the fallout into focus. Beaches all over the world are dotted with discarded masks and gloves, meaning even more plastic pollution in our oceans.

"Soon there will be more masks than jellyfish in the Mediterranean,” says Operation Mer Propre, a French cleanup non-profit. 


But there's good news. First, masks are making a powerful difference. They are the best buffer for yourself and others around you in preventing the spread of the Coronavirus. And, according to a growing list of scientific studies, they are actively saving lives. 

Also, if there's anything we learned from Fashion Week, it's that masks aren't just necessary to stop the spread of COVID-19, they're an edgy accessory. As if saving lives wasn't enough already, there are also these benefits:

  • Random men no longer stop you to tell you to smile.
  • We are listening to each other more and occasionally even making eye contact. 
  • No more returning from a grocery run to find that no one at Trader Joe's told you that you had lipstick on your teeth.
  • You don't even need that lipstick.
  • Plus, call us crazy, but there's something almost mysterious about masks that draws the attention in on your eyes in a big way. 

The truth is that while there was some initial culture shock around masking up in the U.S., in many countries masks have been on trend for centuries. If you've traveled overseas, you've probably seen locals in masks.
Well, America finally got the memo, we're no longer pedestrian when it comes to face masks. In fact, we have an endless array of mask options to flaunt our love for humanity and good fashion every time we leave the house.

And yes, some of them are made by sustainable fashion brands.


Here are our favorite slow-fashion brands mask designs that make for a beautiful buffer:


For Days smiley masks

Who says you can't show your smile? These soft, organic cotton masks are machine-washable with a smile on the side. They're navy, so you can wear them with everything. And you can get them at a discount when you recycle your previous purchases from For Days. A five pack starts at just $22. Find them here.


House of Woo face masks

The House of Woo's Uplifter face masks combine cotton-based fabrics and soft jersey with a third layer of moisture-wicking pellon for added structure and  breathability. Fun fact, according to the World Health Organization (WHO), three-layered fabric masks are the most effective in COVID-19 protection and prevention. Find the Uplifter here.


Lele Sadoughi face masks

Lele Sadoughi's performance face masks are gender-neutral and perfect for your morning jog. With a soft cotton jersey design, comfy, adjustable ear straps, and plenty of room for a filter for extra protection, they're great on the go.  Find yours here.


Artsy face masks

These reversible, hand-painted face masks are hand-made with slow-fashion love in Los Angeles. Made from 100% certified cotton, every face mask purchase supports a woman-owned business, and for every single-mask purchase, one face mask is donated. Find yours here.


Subscribe to our blog Public Knowledge for informative and uplifting fashion and sustainability facts delivered straight into your inbox.


At Public Habit, we believe the key to a sustainably fashionable world is a world in which everything is made on demand. We make only what you want; not what we think you will want. Our approach eliminates waste and builds a longer-lasting wardrobe. The result? A happier and healthier population and planet.

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