Should you wear a mask outside? That’s the question on everyone’s minds for the last few months as the coronavirus continues to wreak havoc around the world.
While in the beginning, it was unclear if all Americans needed to wear face masks in public during the coronavirus pandemic, it became crystal clear last week, when the Centers for Disease Control Prevention announced that this to be the case…point, blank period.
If you’re planning on attending large gatherings. whether at a park or at a protest rally, it is imperative that you cover up!
Not to mention, as the Washington Post reported, in cities such as Los Angeles and Miami, you can’t walk into a grocery store, pharmacy or essential business without something covering your nose and mouth.
With so many every day non-medical, non-surgical masks being sold out at the local stores, many folks are left to order them online.
Wondering where to buy a high-quality breathable face mask? Looking for a face mask that reflects your personality or personal style?Or maybe you’re Interested in buying face masks from black-owned business? If you’ve answered yes to any of these questions, then you’ve come to the right place.
Here’s a list of the 10 best—and most stylish—face masks made by Black-owned businesses and designers that will protect you and your family. Just don’t forget to throw them in the washing machine before you use them.
***Editor’s Note: The CDC has asked that we not purchase medical face masks because our health care workers who are risking their lives to save us need them first. Beware of online sellers claiming to have surgical masks.
1. Noel. B
These sistas believe that “Our face protection proves that you can still be fashionable.” Trust: from colorful designs to being dedazzled-out, Noel. B meets all of her customers where they are, especially when it comes to price.
2. Samaria Leah
As we previously reported, LL Cool J’s daughter, denim designer Samaria Leah is taking her love of fabric and sewing to make a difference. The 25-year-old FIT graduate is making her own fabulous masks ($25) out of 100% denim and come in various sizes. Plus, a portion of the proceeds go toward COVID-19 relief.
3. Damn Air Fresh
Damn Air Freshner has been selling biodegradable, oil-based air freshners since 1998. But now they are doing their part to create custom protective masks that are affordable and stylist. We simply love these affordable masks — and their wide variety of cute designs that speak to our comic book nerd and our inner sweet tooth. Be sure to also check out their HBCU- and college sport-themed masks.
4. Wrapped by Nellz
Wrapped by Neliz – known for her stylish head wraps – is now creating wrap and mask sets! I LOVE this idea of still being able to SLAY in the pandemic, which is why this animal print wrap and mask set ($30) is the business.
5. House Of Nambili
House of Nambili is a Brooklyn-Based fashion accessories store that uses beautiful ethnographic textiles from North West Africa and beyond. Their masks are 100% cotton, machine washable, breathable, and vibrantly beautiful, all while giving us a taste of the motherland. Even better? They are affordable, with most masks costing $15.
6. CR CLOTHING Co.
CR Clothing Co. (CRCCo.), is a made-to-order clothing brand founded by Atlanta-based designer Charla Ruschelle. Her affordable and fashion-forward masks ($15) are hand-made and feature a pocket where you can insert a filter for added protection. These masks tend to sell out quickly so be sure to grab one while supplies last.
7. Aloha Glamour
Aloha Glamour is a ready-to-wear clothing boutique that focuses on African and Hawaiian prints. Based in Gulfport, Mississippi, Aloha Glamour’s physical location had to shut down due to COVID-19, but this has not stopped it’s owner, Alexis W. Williams, from pivoting to mask-making, and adopting a buy one, give one model that provides free masks to essential workers. Featured on Forbes, Black Enterprise, Travel Noire, and the Black News Channel, to name a few, this Mississippi-based clothing boutique is worth checking out not only for their face masks, but for self-described Afro-Waiian fashion aesthetic.
8. CAAB Customs
If personalized face masks are your thing, you make want to check out CAAB Customs. Founded in 2016, this online boutique specializes in creating custom pieces that let you express your true self. With CAAB Customs, now you can still be sassy while wearing a face mask. You can pick from a selection of witty phrases or customize a mask with one of your own.
9. Printed Pattern People
Printed Pattern People features clothing and fashion accessories designed by Brooklyn-based designer Shadé Akanbi. Her designs feature textiles sourced from around the world that are rich in vibrant colors, patterns, and textures. Plus, Akanbi’s masks are reversible and contain interior filer pockets.
To put it simply, these masks are so sleek, so stylish, so us!
10. Thread By Denise
This Philadelphia-based online boutique creates handmade African inspired clothing and accessories that are divine. These Kente cloth masks in particular are giving us life!