Style Vs. Protection: putting the debate to rest in masks
Fast forward to a couple of months and the customer requirement that even a non-medical mask must stop a large part of particles. So we added a five-layer extremely thin filter sandwiched between two layers of knit fabric.
This filter is made from a layer of woven mesh, a second layer spun bond and a third layer of melt-blown and fourth and fifth layers again spun bond and knit mesh.
These masks put to rest the discussion about being able to breathe with a mask on and looking good while keeping safe. These melt-blown and bonded filter masks as per the SITRA test report stop 98% of all particles up to 3 microns and 90% of .3 microns. Covering the nose as well as chin these masks can be worn full day with ease with 80 hours of use before filters get clogged and require a hand wash.
Oh. and just to make sure these do not come with any germs these masks are washed in anti-microbial liquid before packing for shipment. A slight smell lingers on even when it reaches you.
The Start of Masks.
I was working on launching my new apparel line when Covid-19 hit. Almost all factories closed, and product development received a massive setback.
This is also when masks became the new accessory. I also thought of doing something easy to breathe as well as look different and innovative,
Fortunately one of the sweater factories that I work with, was open as they were in an area that did not shut down and they had stopped most of their commercial production to meet guidelines and also because of industry-wise cancellations. Working with a skeleton staff, using 16 gauge machines, typical men's designs like herringbone, Irish Plaid, and houndstooth we reimagined these for masks. Developing in cotton with spandex and a thread of elastic on both sides of the masks -the full mask was knitted as a single piece allowing coverage of the nose and chin and hugging the cheeks.
When Samples came in, loved it. Soon marketing started.
Kevin A.is the founder of Nomarch pour Homme. He has spent most of his life in the apparel industry.