A mannequin with a face mask and a reminder of safety precautions is displayed in a clothing store amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in a Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines, July 24, 2020. REUTERS/Eloisa Lopez
The coronavirus pandemic has affected every aspect of life -- including fashion. To cater to new economic realities and the COVID-19 concerns of their clientele, several apparel companies have developed antivirus protection in their clothing.
"COVID-19 has reset the world," Faisal Ahmed, CEO of Artistic Denim Mills , said in a statement. "This means we have to change how we live our lives. How our clothes protect us will be a key decision in what we buy and wear."
巴基斯坦领先的牛仔布服装生产商Artistic Denim Mills的首席执行官费萨尔·艾哈迈德在一份声明中说：“新冠肺炎重置了世界。这意味着我们必须改变我们的生活方式。衣服的保护作用将会成为决定我们如何选购和穿着的一个关键因素。”
The Pakistan-based leading denim and apparel manufacturer was an early adopter of adding antiviral technology to its products. In June, the company partnered with Swiss textile firm HeiQ to release antiviral denim and face mask collections.
Artistic Denim Mills公司是最早将抗病毒技术应用到服装产品中的企业之一。今年六月，该公司和瑞士纺织企业HeiQ合作推出了抗病毒牛仔服和口罩系列。
HeiQ claims that its Viroblock NPJ03 technology, which "makes treated textiles resistant against the degradation by microorganisms and inhibits the growth of bacterial odors," has been tested effective 99.99% in 30 minutes against SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. In Germany, the antiviral claims are now permitted, according to the company.
In July, denim brand Diesel announced it would implement virus-fighting technology into its upcoming styles through a partnership with Swedish firm Polygiene, maker of ViralOff which claims to have the capacity to disable over 99% of viral activity within two hours of contact between pathogens and fabric. It interacts with key proteins to hinder the virus from attaching to textile fibers. The technology is intended to protect treated products, not intended to prevent the wearer against disease, according to Viraloff.
Viraloff will be applied across a selection of Diesel's spring/summer 2021 denim styles with an aim at a greater range of products in the future.
Other activewear brands, Under Armour and Live!, have followed suit by putting antiviral technology into their lines as many consumers are looking for an additional layer of protection while working out. The Under Armour mask features an "anti-microbial treatment on the inside layer to help keep masks fresh."
Transmission of COVID-19 through items such as clothes is still unknown, according to medical experts. Although the virus can live on clothes and surfaces, it isn't yet known if or how that translates to actual infection.
While the efficacy of these products is still unknown, market shares for antimicrobial clothing are currently $10.48 billion and expected to rise to $20.50 billion, nearly doubling by 2026, Global Market Insights reports.
Even if antivirus clothing isn't a top solution against helping to stop the spread of COVID-19, many companies are leaning into the technology as a way to produce more items that marry fashion and function amid the pandemic.