As communities across the globe continue to practice social distancing, protective face masks are highly recommended. And in some cases, required as a measure to take when out in public. But in addition to being practical, face masks can also be a fun and fashionable way to spread some sunshine, support small businesses or raise funds for important causes and organizations.
Whether for donation, gift or personal use, here are a few local San Diego businesses and organizations offering up unique face coverings for purchase to both local San Diegans and those ordering from afar.
Artelexia specializes in unique Mexican gifts, art and home décor. Now this North Park boutique offers colorful protective face masks. They are available for delivery or curbside pickup. The adult one-size masks, made with two layers of 100% cotton fabric and an additional cotton flannel fabric in between, come in different designs including fuchsia pink serape and Spanish title. For every purchase of a mask, one will be donated to local hospitals, nursing homes and first responders.
Fans of the San Diego Zoo can connect with their cute animal residents through live webcams. Now you can also support the zoo’s wildlife conservation efforts with the purchase of a face mask. Available in three different designs, in adult and youth sizes, the 2-ply protective masks are now available online for pre-order.
La Jolla’s adventure and lifestyle brand specializing in kayak tours and surf lessons has added practical face mask to its California-inspired apparel line. These breathable face coverings can double as neck gaiters (see the main image of this post for an example). If you find traditional masks uncomfortable, these face masks are a great alternative.
Simón Limón, a small shop in the dynamic Barrio Logan, continues to support independent artists via its online store. The shop is including a free fabric face mask with all online orders over $18. The two-layer cotton handmade masks are also available for purchase and include a filter pocket with an exchangeable coffee filter. The face coverings come in an array of fabric colors as well as embroidered designs in various sizes. Matching scrunchie sets and practical chain accessories are also available.
LiliKouture, a small, woman-owned business in the diverse City Heights neighborhood, serves San Diego’s African community by creating modern and easy to wear fashions using traditional African fabrics and designs. To meet current needs, LiliKouture is now creating vibrant face masks in different sizes. The masks are also made with 100% cotton fabric imported from Togo, Africa. Matching head scarf and scrub hat sets are also available for purchase in their Etsy store.
Local Project Runway 2015 winner and designer Ashley Nell Tipton has temporarily shifted operations. Now her team creates a diverse selection of stylish face masks. Each handmade mask consists of three pieces of fabric, adjustable straps and comes with an ear stress reliver. Pre-order designer mask headbands intended to help ease facemask wearing in a fun and chic way. For every mask purchased, Ashely is donating a mask to a healthcare organization.
Colorful home décor accent pieces, handmade embroidered toys and now face masks. Folk Project is continuing its mission to support South and Central American communities by adding face masks to their offerings. The masks come in different colors made of 100% cotton with an additional Pellon interfacing layer. For every mask purchase, Folk Project will donate a mask to a Native community or migrant shelter in the USA.
The San Diego Art Institute has curated a special online Regional Artist Market (RAM) with functional items for purchase. Created by various artists, items available in the market range from simple to creative face masks and scarves available in different styles, materials and prices. Designed to support independent artists during these difficult times, RAM gives 60% of every sale directly to the artists.
Photo courtesy of Everyday California.