Over the past couple of weeks, our world has changed drastically in response to coronavirus. The fashion and beauty industries have felt the effects of this global pandemic in a number of ways, from factory closures to event cancellations to general economic uncertainty. China and Italy, two of the hardest-hit countries, oversee a large portion of the world’s product manufacturing, creating a ripple effect that echoes across the whole industry.
In these troubling times, one thing that has continued to inspire me is how fashion and beauty brands are playing their parts and helping to create necessary equipment and donate funds to hospital workers and charitable organizations that need help. Even when the industry’s future at large is under question, these companies are putting the needs of their communities first.
Here are ways fashion and beauty brands are playing their part in helping those affected by coronavirus:
Fashion Brands Produce Protective Face Masks
With global shortages of crucial protective medical equipment like face masks and gloves, many of the world’s leading fashion brands are putting a pause on dressmaking to focus on mask production instead.
Saint Laurent, Balenciaga, Gucci, and Christian Siriano have all announced that they will develop protective face masks for medical workers. Because coronavirus is so easily transmittable through respiratory droplets, medical workers who are in close contact with sick patients need these protective masks to keep themselves healthy.
Influencer-favorite fashion brand Revolve is also donating, N FDA-approved face masks to two hospitals in Los Angeles, and are producing thousands more to distribute around the country. The company will additionally include high filtration face masks not approved for hospital use in future customer orders, providing customers with a way to prevent the spread of the disease in their own communities.
Fashion brand Sanctuary is also pivoting its production to focus on creating over million N masks to distribute to the medical community, and they will also be creating Essential Lifestyle Masks for consumers to wear outside. The proceeds from each Essential Lifestyle Mask purchase will go toward distributing masks to hospital workers.
Beauty Brands Manufacture Hand Sanitizer
Large beauty companies like L’Oreal are using their production factories to manufacture hand sanitizer. L’Oreal hopes to provide hand sanitizer to hospitals, nursing homes, and pharmacies in Europe.
Fashion conglomerate LVMH is similarly having its cosmetics and fragrance brands like Parfums Christian Dior and Guerlain create and distribute hand sanitizer to French hospitals.
Even smaller businesses like Eco Lips are manufacturing hand sanitizer for their local community in Iowa. The hope is that making hand sanitizer readily available will protect citizens from coronavirus when hand soap is not readily available.
Gap . and Canada Goose Will Create Medical Scrubs and Patient Gowns
In addition to manufacturing masks, Gap . announced that it is working with hospitals in California to produce protective face masks, hospital gowns, and medical scrubs for healthcare workers and patients.
Canada Goose is also repurposing factories to manufacture scrubs for Canadian hospitals, and fashion designer Brandon Maxwell is having his team create hospital gowns while they work from home.
Brands Donating Their Products To Those In Need
Some brands in the fashion and beauty world are recognizing the value of their own products during this time and donating them to those in need.
Beauty brand The Body Shop donated , cleansing products to senior communities and shelters in the United States and Canada. In the United Kingdom, The Body Shop also created and distributed care packages to local hospital workers.
Footwear brand Allbirds donated $, worth of shoes to healthcare workers, and has now launched a “Buy a Pair, Give a Pair” program so customers can purchase a new pair of shoes for themselves and automatically supply a pair to a medical worker. Customers also have the option to simply donate a pair if they have no need for new shoes.