Published: 2020-03-21 10:29:42 BdST
In one video that has gathered tens of thousands of views, 29-year-old beauty YouTuber SSUNZY gives tips for applying makeup in a way that looks good under a mask.
"It's very, very unfortunate that a mask hides your face," she says in the video. "You can't show off your charm. I'm going to do makeup that makes your face look good even when you're wearing a mask."
SSUNZY recommends that viewers use more moisturiser, and stick to more natural shades rather than heavy colouring. A hydrating foundation, for example, makes it easier to touch up makeup after removing a mask, she said.
SSUNZY, a beauty content YouTuber, records YouTube video clips on makeup tutorials catered to those wearing masks, following the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), at a studio in Seoul, South Korea, Mar 17, 2020. REUTERS
"We saw an increase in skincare product sales during the month of March compared to the previous month," said Amorepacific Group, South Korea's largest cosmetics powerhouse. "Anti-aging products show the most stable sales."
The ubiquitousness of face masks has made them an everyday fashion item for South Koreans, with K-pop music stars helping spread their popularity.
"The public has become more comfortable with them as a countermeasure (to coronavirus) because G-Dragon wears them, BTS wears them, everybody wears them, so why can't I wear them?" Korean fashion designer Park Youn-hee, who often works with K-pop idols including BTS and Girls' Generation, said at her showroom in Seoul while suggesting a fashion style that fits for a face mask. "To us, and to K-fashion, the mask is a signature item."
Im Yu-mi, fan of K-pop boy band BTS, takes a selfie at a cafe decorated with photos and merchandise of them, in Seoul, South Korea, Mar 13, 2020. REUTERS
The government has imposed a rationing system to limit the number of masks each person can buy each week and placed export restrictions on masks.
In response, some South Koreans have turned to other ways of combining protection and fashion. One item seen for sale in shops and online are hats with a clear plastic face shield.
People of all ages have been seen wearing the hat in Daegu, the centre of South Korea's coronavirus outbreak.
"It goes well with all casual clothing," Park said of the hats.
Kim Myung-hae, 46, a pre-school teacher, practices a dance by the South Korean boyband BTS as she watches a YouTube video at her home, during the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Gumi, Gyeongsang Province, South Korea, Mar 13, 2020. Reuters
Park said people should embrace some of the anonymity provided by masks and push the boundaries of their personal style.
"I think a mask is an item that can give you confidence since people don't recognise you clearly," she said. "Try bold colours and different looks."