There’s definitely a family resemblance, but with one difference.

With face masks having become pretty much as important as a shirt and pants when going out in public, it made a lot of sense when Uniqlo, Japan’s favorite brand for reasonably priced but high-quality clothing, got into the game with its Airism masks. Last week, Uniqlo’s even more affordable sister brand, GU, started selling its own masks too, and just like when the Airism ones first became available, GU’s masks are selling out at stores across Japan.

As a matter of fact, when we went looking to get some, our local GU had a sign posted saying that sales were limited to three two-mask packs per customer. Luckily, they still had some left, so we picked one up.

790 yen (US$7.50) gets you two GU masks, a lower price of entry than Uniqlo’s three-for-990 yen masks. As we took one out of the package, your fingertips were greeted by the touch of soft, smooth, and cool fabric.

GU mask (left) and Uniqlo mask (right) – we’ll explain the size difference in a minute.

The texture of the GU mask is reminiscent of Uniqlo’s, although their materials differ. GU’s outer surface is a 60/34/6 blend of rayon, polyester, and polyurethane, with an all-polyester inner lining. Uniqlo’s mask, meanwhile, is 90 percent nylon and 10 percent polyurethane, regardless of the surface.

To the average Joe, though, the difference in look and feel is negligible…at least from the outside. The big thing that sets the GU mask apart from the Uniqlo one, though, comes when you look at the inner side, where the Uniqlo mask is white and the GU one beige.

Because of that, if you’re going to be wearing makeup and worried about your foundation or other cosmetics discoloring the inside of your mask, GU’s is the one we’d recommend.

Oh, and about the size difference in our side-by-side comparison photo. GU’s masks come in two sizes, medium and large. We’d assumed this meant that medium was designed to fit most faces, and large would be irregularly roomy, but it’s probably better to think of them as “small and large,” as the medium-size GU masks we bought turned out to be a pretty snug fit for us.

Photos ©SoraNews24
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