As the world is facing a deadly pandemic, somehow, humanity has found a way to make wearing face masks for their wellbeing and the health of others an issue.
Science, of course, is trying its best to inform those who refuse to wear them through social media platforms; however, more and more "entrepreneurs" have started getting on the face mask wagon, where people claim they're selling "breathable" masks when actually, what they're doing is causing a public hazard.
These masks, advertised as "comfortable," "stylish" and "breathable," are basically fashion statements that are not effective at preventing contagions from escaping. This video, which demonstrates the ways masks prevent the spread of COVID-19, might enlighten you more about the issue and explain why masks are our best chance at preventing person-to-person transmission.
These custom mask designs sacrifice actual functionality for the sake of breathability, and these mesh masks do more harm than good. We've gathered the most bizarre ones for educational purposes.
1. Breathable Tulle Face Mask
This one is perfect for the "bridal-aesthetic" for those times when you want to infect everyone who attends your wedding with coronavirus. Or vice versa.
2. Breathable Novelty Mask
This one was apparently what one buyer needed to still be "in compliance for entry into store and restaurants."
3. Breathable, lighter than air mask
This "lighter-than-air" mask was a hit among those who wanted a really good design to go with their look. One user even said, "If the mask rule continues for a while, we would definitely purchase more."
4. Disposable mesh net for your breathing shenanigans
Thankfully, one seller included the proper way of wearing such masks.
5. Blingy and breathable face mask
You could probably blind anyone who's begging you to wear a proper mask with this one.
6. Neon mesh face mask
This store had a warning written: "Mesh masks are NOT intended for protection or [COVID-19] use. These are just for fashion or to cover and Dress up the plain Disposable or N-95 masks. Not doing so will NOT allow you to protect yourself and others."
However, that didn't stop people from buying it for that exact reason. One buyer, notably, named Karen wrote, "Very comfortable and breathable, and yet no one has called me out on wearing a mesh mask."
Well, Karen, someone should have.
7. Butterfly mesh mask
While this one also had the above warning, that didn't stop this user -- and possible others, from commenting "But if you want a mask that doesn't suffocate you then this is for you."
8. Rhinestone face mask
This seller also stated, "This mask will not give required protection, it can be worn as a fashion statement or over an existing mask"; however, the picture they used for the product gave off a different vibe. It is still nice that they put up a warning though since many of the other products didn't.
How and why should you wear a mask?
When in doubt, it is always best to consult the FDA's Face Mask and Surgical Mask guidance since it very clearly states that a surgical mask should be worn since it is meant to help splatter that may contain viruses and bacteria from reaching your mouth and nose.
The CDC also recommends that preventive actions such as "hand washing and maintaining at least 6 feet of social distancing" should be done to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Etsy also states that "Items sold on Etsy, such as masks and hand sanitizers, aren't medical-grade. Etsy sellers cannot make medical or health claims."
As explained above by one of the sellers, these masks can only be worn as fashion statements and they don't provide any protection against COVID-19.
If you have any doubts about the effectiveness of the surgical masks, you can check out this experiment which shows why it is crucial for all of us to wear one and why face mask use is necessary to prevent a second COVID-19 wave.