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Fashion Folks Talk Mask Trends and Shopping Choices in the Times of COVID

Whether we like it or not, face masks are going to be a part of our daily lives for some more time. As we adapt to this new lifestyle which was born as a safety measure for you and your loved ones, many of us saw an opportunity for a fashion trend. So we dug a little deeper into the trend, and we found inspiration from among our community who are not only encouraging people to wear masks but are making the most of it through their style. Scroll down and be inspired… 

Theyiesinuo Keditsu, 39, Assistant Professor, Kohima

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Theyiesinuo Keditsu, Nagaland

“COVID has rendered the Mekhalas I wore to work obsolete as well as most of my wardrobe. I spent the first lockdown literally interchanging between two lounging outfits. While I have always shopped sparingly, this pandemic has made shopping for clothing, makeup & most accessories a futile and an insensitive exercise for me personally..given the grave threat of the virus & the suffering it has unleashed.

But with so many local businesses – fashion-centered ones included, struggling to keep their head above water, it has been important to support their efforts at the same time. So now that I have resumed work, I try & incorporate local jewelry & fashion brands to my (upper body) look to promote local creators and designers. I’m also very encouraged by the number of local designers who have taken to making face masks so I have bought a few to add to my outfits when I step out (I am wearing one in the photo)~ Theyiesinuo Keditsu

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Theyiesinuo Keditsu, Nagaland

Depora Kinimi, 21, Student and Model, New Delhi

Photo : Depora Kinimi

“Wearing a mask has become compulsory for everyone, and it’s a constant reminder about the pandemic.. and since this is going to continue for a lot longer, I try to incorporate a stylish mask (like the one I am wearing in this photo). By doing so, I actually don’t mind wearing a mask at all times.. and it’s fun! Combining style and safety by donning colorful masks, and sometimes coordinating the fabric with my outfits excites me so much more.”~Depora Kinimi

Mhicievi Luho, 21, Student, Nagaland

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Photo: Mhicievi Luho

“With the closing down of both online and offline stores and the general normal way of life being completely altered by the current Covid-19 Pandemic, I have been ransacking through my old clothes and thrifting vintage outfits from my parent’s wardrobe. So my outfits these days are anything that is comfortable, old and revived, mix-and-match and completed with a face mask:) ~ Mhicievi Luho

Ason Chang, 27, Health Worker, Blogger, and Writer, Nagaland

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Ason Chang (Sonla)

“COVID has surely affected me personally because I am a health worker. I Have to go work daily, sometimes even on weekends. I barely get time even to buy my everyday essentials because by the time I am home it’s almost dark. So these days it’s most online shopping for me, and ‘face mask’ has become part of my outfit. (laughs!) It’s the new normal. Plus, I’ve always loved bringing crazy ideas together so it has given me a room to be innovative with my clothes too.” ~Ason Chang (Sonla)

Karan Chetri, 30, Fashion Influencer, Kohima

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Karan Chetri | Photo credit – joony_____

“I wear a mask for my safety but most importantly for the safety of others. I treat my face mask like a must-have item in my outfit – just like I would treat my pants/shirts etc. So wearing a mask doesn’t bother my style at al. But on a personal note, my spectacles turning foggy is what really disturbs me a lot (I think my spectacles comrades will know my frustration better lol).

If you ask me how my fashion choices have been altered by this ‘new normal’, thrifting has become a lot harder due to the pandemic lockdowns and social distancing becoming the norm. Even if I try to go online, online IG thrift stores are mostly for women. Nonetheless, some stores have opened up in my colony so I go there to do my shopping but the options are really limited. I hope that things get normal soon so that we are able to flaunt our style like those good old days. Stay positive and stay stylish.” ~Karan Chetri

Fita Snock, Fashion Designer, Delhi

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Fita Snock

“The fashion choices remain undeterred but the fun of shopping outside physically is definitely not the same. Given the social distancing and safety matters owing to the COVID pandemic, most of the shopping has shifted online. An interesting observation as a fashion designer,  is that there’s been a surge in order for outfits with matching mask. Mask has become a part of our daily lives and my clients are taking full advantage of it in a fashion-forward approach.” ~Fita Snock

Kevingunyü Mere, 20, Student, Nagaland

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Kevingunyü Mere

“I’m not into the fast-fashion culture. As a young person, I am constantly trying to update myself and be aware of my choices and their consequences for the kind of lifestyle I will live as I eventually become independent. I believe this pandemic has made consumers aware of the importance of sustainable living, myself included. My biggest takeaway is learning to live with less – and mask!” ~Kevingunyü Mere

Virie, 32 | Singer, Composer, Music Teacher, Nagaland

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Photo: Virie

“In response to the pandemic, I have seen that most fashion brands and retailers canceling orders and stopping payments for orders already placed. Same time, many local brands are stepping up with innovative and fashionable face masks and clothes, which are all the rage during this pandemic, providing uninterrupted choices for fashion lovers. 

Fashion during this time is mainly focussed on comfort clothing and playing mix-and-match with what I have already in my closet. Being indoors has also given me more time to explore new inspiration in fashion, and helping out my friends who own online stores and waiting for our earth to heal some more “ ~ Virie

Keneisenuo, 30 | Assistant Professor, Model, Nagaland

Photo : Keneisenuo

This pandemic has brought changes to multiple things in our normal day-day lives – and it has definitely affected fashion lovers too with regards to their shopping, their outfit choices and more. For me personally, I have seen limitations when it comes to dressing up, but I try to compensate for that by doung some outfit shoots and putting them on my social media.

I am thankful that we can still shop online.. options are limited however.. so every successful purchase becomes a part of my happiness during this COVID times. ~ Keneisenuo

Gitana | 28, Baker, Delhi

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Photo: Gitana

“During these COVID lockdowns, I’ve become an online shopper but I’ve stopped myself from living in my pajamas and actually get dressed every day so I feel productive at work.” ~ Gitana

Lipoksanen Jamir, 25, Student, Bangor, Wales

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Photo: Lipoksanen Jamir

“The Pandemic did not really change much of my style. However, due to the paucity of shopping options, I have started opting for basic wear like t-shirts and jeans rather than printed/colorful shirts.

I have not been shopping much at present and coincidentally, I was challenged by a friend of mine to go on a ‘Sustainable Challenge’ where one needs to go off without buying new clothes for three months. I do believe that fashion shouldn’t come at the cost of the environment and we all need to do our bit and contribute to this effort 🙂 I’m intentionally trying to be careful of my shopping options to ensure I pick sustainable choices, and with the thrift shops slowly opening up, I am also super stoked to go out and search for some vintage shirts and jackets to add to my wardrobe/collection!!

I do scan over ongoing trends.. and I have recently tried adding more flare through accessories just to add a touch of pop to my outfit! Things are slowly starting to open up here in Wales, but wearing a mask still remains the right choice to do. Whilst it is not mandatory here, I would say, owning a non-medical grade face covering with minimal pattern is now kind of a fad here!” ~Lipoksanen Jamir