Trends may come and go in waves, but the bandana is one accessory that always manages to keep itself afloat in fashion's constantly changing sea of relevancy. Whether you've worn one to complete the ultimate western-inspired ensemble or bought a whole bunch in preparation for festival season, there are a number of ways you've probably encountered this casual-cool scarf over the years. And now, the humble bandana has become more in-demand than ever before because of its potential to be transformed swiftly into a face mask — no sewing kit required.
Since the Center For Disease Control (CDC) now recommends wearing cloth face coverings in public settings where social-distancing measures may be difficult to maintain, the demand for face masks has spiked to a point where it might just break the internet. There are places to buy non-medical face masks online, and retailers like Reformation and Alice + Olivia have been ahead of the curve in converting their factories to manufacture cloth masks for essential workers and the general public alike. But these are selling out fast, so if you hit a digital dead end — that’s where your trusty bandana can come in handy.
To be clear: the cloth coverings recommended by the CDC are not to be confused with medical PPE (personal protective equipment), like surgical masks or N-95 respirators. Anyone who isn't fighting on the frontlines of this health crisis that is in possession of N95 or surgical masks is encouraged to send them directly to those in need. But if you have no form of face-covering at all, making a non-medical one at home is a good alternative to purchasing one online (especially if the internet does, in fact, break). And if the bandana is an essential piece of some of the most popular DIY methods out there, why not get a particularly cool one to act as a fashion-forward face-covering now and then so much more in the future?
While home fabrics are not as effective as medical equipment, at the very least, they keep germs from getting out, so it's definitely better than nothing. Ahead, scoop up what you'll need to convert your bandana, and shop a selection of printed styles that'll remain a core part of your accessories collection long after quarantine is over.
COVID-19 has been declared a global pandemic. Go to the CDC website for the latest information on symptoms, prevention, and other resources.
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