Safety measures in response to the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) have impacted many businesses in Japan, but nightlife establishments in particular have had difficulty navigating encouraged protocol and policy. While some “girls’ bars” have adopted rigid hygiene standards and hostess clubs have turned to virtual services, businesses that rely on the appeal of patrons enjoying the company of women in a private drinking setting just aren’t that compatible with social distancing methods.
Yamagata prefecture-based kimono and traditional Japanese clothing maker Ototsuki is proposing a solution, however. The manufacturer has released stylish masks made from excess kimono cloth that they say offer protection while also being aesthetically pleasing in the nightclub hostesses industry.
The masks are inspired by belly-dancer clothing. Ototsuki says the three-layer masks are designed to protect against splash damage from eating and drinking, and layered to an extent that they are also medically cleared.