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Fitted face masks are now compulsory in Victoria, so here’s a list of Australian brands’ offerings

IMAGES VIA THE SOCIAL STUDIO

Words by Helena Bammant

Mask on.

If COVID-19 has left us with anything positive, it’s the addition of a new fashion item. As most of Australia’s restrictions start to ease (sorry, Victoria) many people are beginning to return to their pre-isolation lives, or in Victoria’s case heading back inside.

Victorians also need to keep in mind that fitted face masks (like the selection below) have now been made compulsory – that means no more bandanas, scarves or face shields. Either way, a face mask is a great way to protect yourself, and it looks like we’re going to be wearing them for a while, so why not get one you don’t mind wearing?

There is also the environmental impact to consider – disposable masks are wasteful, but reusable ones can be washed and, as the name implies, reused as many times as you’d like (just remember to wash them after each use).

These reusable fabric masks are in no way a replacement for medical-grade masks (and have not been tested or proven to protect against COVID-19), but they do prevent you from unintentionally spreading germs. 

To help you out when making this important decision for your health (and future outfits), we’ve rounded up a list of our favourite Aussie brands making face masks fun. Or you can try making one for yourself, with step-by-step instructions from Melbourne label Par Moi here

Gary Bigeni

The eponymous Aussie fashion label Gary Bigeni launched its polka-dot inspired masks. Each mask is locally made using leftover polka dot fabric from past collections, with 100 per cent cotton poplin lining and adjustable straps. 

Available here for $25.


Pretty Sick Masks

Inspired by the ‘origami’ style of design, these masks are very cute and very stylish. All masks are handmade in Sydney from 100 per cent cotton weave fabric with adjustable straps. For a more chic design, the range also features pure silk masks with straps that can be tied around the head.

Available here from $24.99.


Sett

 

Locally made in Melbourne and Canberra, these face mask designs are great for the animal lovers. They come in beautiful doggo and birdie prints, with filter pockets, adjustable loops and nose wire. Better yet, for each mask sold, $1 is donated to the Scarlet Alliance COVID-19 sex worker relief fund.

Available here for $18.


Threadgate

Sydney studio Threadgate is making cotton face masks from old collections. Although not hospital-grade, the colour options of blue plaid, avocado and khaki set a great base for styling your mask like a true fashion person. ­Each mask is also pleated for adjustable sizing.

Available here for $20.00


Well Made Clothes

Well Made Clothes is a local retailer stocking only ethical and sustainable labels, making it a great place to seek out masks. Now online is Baggu’s three-pack of reusable face masks. Each is machine washable and made from 100 per cent organic quilter’s cotton, available in three different colourways: succulent, mesa and earth. The masks’ tight weave and thick thread are effective at blocking respiratory droplets while remaining breathable and comfortable to wear.

Available here for $45.00


Simétrie

Brunswick label Simétrie is diverting from its usual leather materials, handmaking cotton masks in linen. Flip it over and you’ll find a lining in gorgeous muted colours such as lemon, blush, soft pink or soft grey. Made from all the materials available in Simétrie’s atelier, these are one-offs and won’t be restocked.

Available here for $25.00


Arnsdorf

Made by hand in Arnsdorf’s Collingwood HQ, these masks utilise surplus and offcut fabric. They’re triple-layer, made from sustainable cotton jersey with a white-rib trim and ear loops. 

Available here for $25.00


Jimmy Buffalo 

Collingwood clothing maker Jimmy Buffalo is hand-making masks from surplus cotton and polyester. They’re triple-ply with space for a carbon filter, all made from original Jimmy Buffalo prints and fabrics, with contrast linings and cute self-tie fastenings.

Available here for $15.00


Dyspnea

Made and hand-beaded in Indonesia, dreamy label Dyspnea has created purely decorative sequinned masks to up your at-home photoshoot game. While they won’t protect you from smoke or any sort of virus, you cannot deny they’re freakin’ cute.

Available in bitchin’ black and pussy pink for $69.00


Permanent Vacation

Melbourne-based label Permanent Vacation’s mask is reversible (plaid on one side and floral on the other) and is made from three layers of 100 per cent responsibly produced Japanese cotton. It comes in a red and blue colourway.

Available here for $30


Kloke

Kloke has assembled its three-layer masks from Japanese fabrications. They have a dart at the jawline and 3mm wide elastic ear loops with stoppers for a comfortable fit. They are available for pre-order online now and will be shipped out early next week.

Available here for $28


Limb

Melbourne-based label Limb has created its masks out of two layers of linen with a cotton voile in between to provide extra protection. They’re available in two colourways, gingham and cotton check, and both are reversible. They are available now for pre-order, and there is a seven-day wait for them to be dispatched.

Available here for $27


Perple

 

Melbourne-based label Perple’s masks are peak Melbourne. They’re monochrome black, with a wired nose bridge and pearl-accented, self-tie fastenings around the head and neck. Perple’s mask is 100 per cent cotton poplin and made from excess fabric. Safe and sustainable. 

Available here for $29.00


Par Moi

Flowers, cherries and Dorothy blue gingham, these cotton masks embody all things Danish vintage. Instead of moping about the travel bans (especially that non-existent summer getaway) reminisce or dream of your next European adventure whilst wearing this mask. 

Available here for $25.00


Honest Studios

The mother-daughter duo behind Honest Studios has got you covered with these very cool scrap fabric masks. The assortment of fabrics and prints makes it impossible to choose – the green check is my personal fave but who could go past an embroidered mask.

Available here for $25.00

 

Al Ele

Melbourne label Al Ele is making custom masks in your choice of size, straps, layers in a dark denim fabric. The embroidery is made using a 100-year-old Vintage Singer Chainstitch machine; there are no computers involved every stitch is made by hand.

Available here for $30.00

Second Stitch

Not-for-profit organisation Second Stitch have masks available in a fun gingham print and two-tone bold colours. The studio employs women from asylum-seeker and refugee backgrounds and each mask sold is helping to provide work for these women. 

Available here for $18


E Nolan

These masks by Melbourne label E Nolan are made from Liberty London fabrics and embody everything we love about British heritage – paisley prints and pinstripes, like your grandma’s curtains but chic (and they’re oh so chic).  

Available here for $25.00


Kuwaii

Melbourne label Kuwaii’s masks have three layers and are available in three colourways – scarlet red, a navy boho stripe and a scenic earthy print. Also, $5 from every purchase goes to a rotating COVID-19 charity (yay! we love a double investment). 

Available here for $19.00


The Social Studio

The Social Studio is a Melbourne-based three-part not for profit organisation that redirected its manufacturing efforts towards producing masks for the community at cost price. They’re available in four different bright and bold colours. Are you getting Powerpuff girl vibes too?

Available here for $11.00


Toilé Studios

RMIT fashion graduate Nadya Kusumo is hand-making ultra-cool masks from custom-printed fabric off-cuts. Sustainable and safe, these bad boys have a double layer of cotton lining and are available in four checkered colourways: black, beige, brown and blue.

Available here for $25.00


Aarli

This urban warrior mask is for the Y2K Skins-obsessed amongst us. The metallic purple illustration is very Effy at an illegal warehouse rave, just pair it with some fishnet stockings and a dress your mum would consider a shirt for your routine stroll to the supermarket.

Available here for $29.00


The Fashion Advocate

These masks by Melbourne brand The Fashion Advocate come in a range of colourways, including peach leopard and urban jungle. There are two-layer and three-layer masks available, as well as organic ones. They’re 100 per cent plastic-free, polyester-free, and synthetic-free, plus they’re reversible, reusable and locally made. 

Available here for $29.95


A.BCH

For a more minimal design, A.BCH are bringing the goods with this simple and effective dust mask. Even through a screen, you can tell how soft this organic cotton would be. I’m all for the sage colourway but there is also an undyed shade, black and grey marle on offer.

Available here for $33.00


Remuse Designs 

These shibori face masks by Remuse Designs allow you to take 2020’s obsession with tie-dye to your face. The tie-up cotton straps are great for anyone who finds that elastic loops hurt their ears.

Available here for $25


SisterWorks

SisterWorks is a not-for-profit social enterprise based in Melbourne, set up to support women who are refugees, asylum seekers or migrants to improve their confidence, mental wellbeing and sense of belonging. These masks have elastic ear loops and have three layers; one external layer of water repellent fabric, one middle layer of poly-cotton and one inner layer of 100% cotton fabric.

Available here for $24.00


The Ark

From a value perspective, this $50 five-pack is a pretty sweet deal. To save the frequent wash and wear of one reusable fabric mask, these will buy you a bunch of time. And for each pack purchased, The Ark will donate one mask to Impact for Women, an organisation that helps women experiencing domestic violence. 

Available here for $50


Ford Millinery

Ford Millinery moved from exclusively supplying PPE masks to front-liners to designing an extensive collection of fabric masks for the general public. In a heap of cute colours and patterns, there will be something for everyone. Better yet, for every mask purchased under its Masks 4 Mates initiative, Ford Millinery will donate 5% of each sale to a charity or person in need.

Available here for $29.95


Gorman

If you’re looking for something simple, Gorman has made a contribution to the mask market that’s surprisingly minimalist. The masks come in black and white fabric, have adjustable toggle loops and come with eight insertable filters.

Available here for $12.00


Gail Sorronda

Gail Sorronda’s aptly named Serious Flowers Mask is, dare I say it, the most elegant mask I’ve ever seen, with heavy-duty decorative embroidery upon a double layer of mesh overlaying a double layer of cotton.

Available here for $44.44


By Kinsman

If you’re looking for something lowkey and neutral, By Kinsman have four-packs for $60 and even stock kids sizes. 

Available here for $60


Ownsit!

These remind me of Lip Smackers chapsticks in the best way possible. Despite there being tons of cute colourways, you can’t request a certain fabric design so it is a bit of lucky dip. Fortunately, they’re all adorable so you can’t really go wrong.

Available here for $30


Articles of Clothing

Articles of Clothing has just added number 163 to its garments archive – the all-important face mask. The Brunswick-made masks can be bought in beige or black and are complete with an outer layer of heavy cotton drill, pleats for flexibility and an adjustable over-the-nose wire for added protection.

Available here for $29


Pazadz 

Pazadz is a made-to-order label churning out very extra velvet masks with silver rings in place of ear loops and a 100 per cent linen lining. Designer Paris Culbertson says they’re now her ‘number one product’.

Available here for $29.95


Bonds

Australian family favourite Bonds has seen a huge demand for face masks and has jumped on board with three ‘protective comfy’ styles. The cotton masks come in three neutral colours and have a double layer of internal protection. Plus, they’re good for up to 20 washes and come with a little card so you can keep note of how many wears and washes you’ve clocked up.

Available here for $9.95


Ge.Label

Melbourne-based Ge.Label is also producing made-to-order masks from custom prints and patterns. The handmade masks are 100 per cent cotton and made from 3 layers of fabric. Added to that is the exciting option of pairing your mask with a matching Ge.Label print hair scrunchie or scarf. Like many labels, Ge.Label has been bombarded with orders, so these are only available to pre-order right now.

Available here for $29.95


Ftc. Masks

Made by hand in Sydney’s Northern Beaches, Ftc. Masks are a natural-fibre alternative to medical-grade masks, made in neutral coloured fabrics from 60 per cent linen and 40 per cent cotton. Better yet, $1 from every mask sold goes to the WHO COVID-19 solidarity response fund.

Available here for $40.00 


Mimi’s Masks

Mimi’s Masks are another home-grown, made-to-order project, creating monochrome masks for kids and adults. The handmade masks are all 100 per cent linen, machine washable and have adjustable elastic ties. There’s wadding between the two layers of linen, and while the mask isn’t medical-grade, it’ll stop you touching your mouth and nose when outside, and that’s what really counts. 

Available here for $15.00

Muse the Label

Sustainable Melbourne brand Muse the Label boasts a low-impact, transparent supply chain and are now making made-to-order masks. Muse’s masks come in a range of muted neutrals – ochre, blush, clay and sage, to name a few – are 100 per cent linen, and feature a two-tone self-tie feature for something different. 

Available here for $25.00

Oskmood 

If cotton or linen doesn’t cut it for you, Oskmood’s satin masks are a silky-feeling alternative. The Melbourne-based brand boasts triple-layer protection and a carbon filter, all finished in a soft black empire satin. , The mask is fully adjustable, with a contrast white satin trim, inbuilt satin cords and adjustable slip knots.

Available here for $25.00


Mesa Studios

Melbourne-based printmakers Mesa Studios have diversified into facemasks. They’re available in four earthy tones, each is 100 per cent linen, reversible and triple-layered.

Available here for $28.00


HB Archive

HB Archive’s Fitzroy studio is churning out facemasks like there’s no tomorrow.  Available in four colours and two sizes, the hand-made-to-order masks are thick canvas and hemp and have a pocket for a carbon filter. 

Available here for $25.00


Bundarra

Bundarra creates clothing using authentic Indigenous paintings and has expanded its range to include a huge variety of masks. Each mask has adjustable straps, three layers and comes with two filters. A percentage of every Bundarra sale goes to The Mara Way an Indigenous-owned community organisation and in the past three years, Bundarra has directed over $1.5 million to Indigenous employment, community funding, artists and training. Its masks are available for pre-order and will be shipped August 20 or earlier.

Available here for $24.95


Kitx

Sustainable and ethical fashion label Kitx is crafting its masks from remnant luxe Belgium hemp, silk and linen materials. Each mask features pleats and organic cotton elastics for an effortless fit. And they showcase current designs, including the bold, restoration floral print.  

Available here for $25.00


Bohémsky

Melbourne label Bohémsky has crafted its masks with three layers of polyester/cotton fabric and a moldable nose wire for comfort. They come in solid colours, florals and, my personal fave, pastel gingham prints.

Available here for $18.00


Vesper Co 

Sustainable brand Vesper Co is handmaking its luxe, light-weight masks in Melbourne. Each one features a tie-string detail and is made of 100 per cent satin.

Available for pre-order here.


Annie Hamilton 

Sydney-based artist Annie Hamilton has crafted her face masks from silk offcuts. They each feature a pleated front, soft-inner lining and elastic sides. There are four earth-toned prints to choose from.  

Available here for $30.00


The Woolmark Company

The Woolmark Company’s technical team has supported KnitWarm in the development of an innovative wool face mask. Made from Australian wool, the masks are highly breathable, provide natural water resistance, offer a protective covering and are a good natural alternative to synthetic face masks. Who would have thought?

You can find out more here.


Hew

Melbourne designer Hew has teamed up with local artists to provide you with masks in exclusive, eye-catching prints, from colour-blocked geometrics to flora and fauna, each one is stylish, triple-layered and breathable – just the way PPE should be, no?

Available here for $20.00


Pendulum Studios

Pendulum Studios’ printed masks are all made from the brand’s original, hand-drawn and self-described ‘badass’ prints. The triple-layer designs use only deadstock and surplus fabrics, have a wire nose bridge and elastic loops. If you’re sick of neutrals and masks that are a bit meh, look no further.

Available here for $25.00


Her Clolab

Sustainable Sydney label Her Clo.lab makes each of their 100 percent linen facemasks with a small fabric ‘surprise’ patch, so no two are exactly alike. The patch is made from surplus clo.lab fabric, they’ve got elastic ear loops and an adjustable nose bridge. 

Available here for $20.00


Aura Studios

Aura’s Sydney studio is hand-making cotton masks to order, from super-soft 100 per cent organic cotton with cute self-tie loops and a subtle marled fleck throughout. They’re three-ply, and leave space for a carbon filter if you choose to put one in. 

Available here for $25.00


The Silk Société

Meet the ultimate silk face coverings from The Silk Société, all made from 100 per cent pure silk with adjustable elasticated ear loops, keeping your skin soft and supple. Available in blush, champagne, midnight and noir, they also come with complimentary silk pouches.

Available here for $39.


UNIQLO

UNIQLO has finally launched its AIRism masks in Australia. The mask uses state-of-the-art technology featuring a triple-layer structure that promises both protection and comfort. The centre layer employs a filter that blocks 99 per cent of bacterial infiltration, while the front and back AIRism mesh fabric allows breathability and everyday comfort. They come in three sizes (S, M, L), perfect for children and adults.

Available here and in all Australian stores for $19.90.


Castle Grade

Castle Grade has released its new reusable G-Series respirators. They feature a comfortable seal around the face made from medical-grade silicone that can be easily sanitised. With a replaceable filter tested at over 95 per cent efficacy, the air breathed by the wearer can be filtered both on the way in and out for the ultimate protection.

Available here for $59.95.


The Daily Edited

For that personalised touch, The Daily Edited has got your back. Available in a bundle of three, these pink masks can be customised to feature your own preferred text. They are locally made in Sydney with three layers and adjustable ear loops. 

Available here for $69.95.

 

Fella Hamilton

 

Fella Hamilton has been producing face masks locally in Melbourne since April this year. They are available in a range of colours, styles and sizes, featuring design collaborations with local artists.

Available here from $9.95.

 

Mr Simple X Movember

 

Iconic Australian men’s label Mr Simple has partnered up with the Movember initiative to raise awareness of men’s health issues. All sale proceeds from their two-pack Mo Masks will be donated to the Movember charity.

Available here for $20.

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