In Fashion: Masks go chic
In any case, Masks will be acceptable regular wear in the post-COVID world
With masks becoming mandatory when you go out, the cocktail circuit will never look the same. Masked conferences and balls will acquire a whole new meaning. With nobody able to make out a smile, man may over time forget how to smile? Or will the lips become crooked with the effort? Will people get lynched if they take the mask off ?
In any case, masks will be acceptable regular wear in the post-COVID world. Special masks may have to be designed for courts and schools. And while mask-making, like pakoda making, will become a cottage industry, there is little doubt that masks will also be a fashion statement.
Big business houses must be already planning to market designer masks that would cost a bomb and match the cost of lingerie ? People in masks out on the street and in the dark could make CCTV cameras look silly but on a brighter note, this will lead to a noticeable decline in communicable diseases. For all we know mandatory masks might even help people cut down on smoking, unless masks come with slits that can be opened and shut with a flick of the gloved finger.
It will have an impact on the fashion design industry. We might see colour or design coordinated masks to go with other accessories. Will the masks be different for men and women? Will masks match neckties or handbags?
A Birkin purse-mask combo might not be far away. The designs of Venetian masks worn during carnivals can be suitably adopted for medical masks doubling as fashion wear. However, I am unsure about the impact of masks on the lip- stick and makeup industry. Will women still need so many shades of lipsticks?
The focus might actually shift to eye makeup. The other point of view on this is that, if women do makeup even while in a burqa, why would a mere mask deter them? Photographers, in particular those who specialise in portrait photography, would need to develop special composition techniques to carry on shooting masked models.
Will screen sirens ever be the same with their sensuous lips masked while they sing? It is a nightmare. The awareness and need for personal hygiene products will witness an uptick. People will become more careful about the hygiene factor as it will become an important criteria for social acceptance. We may soon see masked players playing Kabaddi with each team sporting masks to match their jersey.
I also wonder about the possible impact on the fast food industry, specially people eating on the go. Chicken Rolls in Calcutta, Burgers in New York, or a Coke in Beijing on the run might not be that easy for the masked masses.