Gather ‘round, dear readers, as this editor has a bit of a secret to share. The absolute best face mask you can get your hands on right now is not made by a luxury label or a fashion designer or an athleisure brand or a superstore. Nope. No, sir. It’s made by a Bravolebrity.
If you haven’t acquainted yourself with Jill & Ally masks already, let me do you the honors. Jill Zarin, one of the original stars of “The Real Housewives of New York City” who, as watchers know, has vast experience working in the textile and fabric business, has teamed with her daughter, Ally Shapiro, to create a line of face coverings that they make right out of Zarin’s home in Florida.
What started as the two selling hand-tie-dyed masks to benefit their Noshes for Nurses initiative, which provides meals to front-line workers, had soon evolved into an operation with bigger inventory and an expanded philanthropic component that involves donating a mask for each one bought. (They’ve donated around 25,000 masks to date, including 5,000 to service members the week of Veterans Day alone.)
Now Jill & Ally masks have been spotted on the social pages of Kris Jenner, TikTok stars Addison Rae and Charli and Dixie D’Amelio, and several other “Real Housewives.”
So what, exactly, makes these little numbers the absolute best? It’s two things: the fit and fabric.
“Fit was the most important,” Zarin said when I called her up to learn a bit more. “And we were able to find an incredible source overseas that was able to supply us with what happens to be the most comfortable mask in the market.”
“And we’ll tell you why — it’s because it’s cotton-rich mask,” Shapiro added.
The two dubbed the masks as feeling like a “hug to the face,” which is actually quite accurate, but I’d even argue it feels even more delicate than that. The fabric, a cotton-polyester blend that makes up both the mask and ear loops, is so buttery soft and lightweight that you’d hardly know it’s there, all while still offering that three-ply protection from germs and droplets. (I actually texted a friend that they’re like the Lululemon Align leggings of face masks. How’s that for an endorsement?)
Any other face-mask woes or wishes you’ve thought of, Zarin and Shapiro have them covered: Acne-prone or sensitive skin? They’ve got a 100% cotton mask for you. Mask sizing a struggle? They’ve got adjustable ones. Machine washable? Neutral colors? Kids options? Accessories and jewelry? Check, check, check and check.
“Just having people wear masks, that’s the message and the most important thing,” Zarin said. “But these really are good for everybody.”
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