Luxury clothing accessory maker The Outlierman has launched a range of automotive-inspired face masks.
Handcrafted in Como, Italy, they come in a selection of distinctive patterns, including the Gentleman Driver, World Beater and Vintage Race.
Non-medical of course, but designed with comfort and style in mind, both the external and internal layers are made of 100 per cent silk and include a filter pocket for a one-time use medical filter.
Ingeniously, The Outlierman face masks can also be used a pocket square, before or after being used.
Handcrafted in Como, Italy, they come in a selection of distinctive patterns, including the Gentleman Driver, World Beater and Vintage Race….
Renowned for silk manufacturing, Lake Como is described as pivotal to the creation of The Outlierman collection of cashmere and silk scarves, ties and pocket squares.
Each mask is finished by hand, like every other silk accessory from the brand. We tried a set on for size and were blown away by their comfort and quality.
To learn more, TLR talked exclusively to Andrea Mazzuca, founder of The Outlierman, to find out what inspired him to take a premium approach to the most debated personal accessory of 2020…
When did it occur to you that you could bring your signature style to something as unglamorous as a face mask?
I wanted a nice mask for myself to use in lockdown, so one day I took a pocket square and converted it into a mask! I posted on my Instagram the mask I created and got many messages from people and friends liking what they saw! We are moved by a sense of uniqueness; people try to express their personalities in many ways. A mask, like any other accessory, can have a double function – so why not do it!
Was there a Eureka moment?
After I received many messages about the masks, I activated a mailing list and received 100 new addresses in one day from people interested in buying it! For me, it became a great marketing opportunity to get in touch with new people that, until that point, hadn’t considered the brand.
Do you see the face mask as an essential new addition to a gentleman’s wardrobe?
I think and hope at the same time that masks won’t become a must-have product in our daily life. In some cultures, it’s quite common, but I think a beautiful smile is better than any design or stylish mask. Obviously, the situation forces us to use it, it’s a serious thing, but when you don’t need to wear it, we suggest using it as a pocket square. This, naturally, allowed to transform a serious thing into a seriously cool thing!
The take up of face covers differs country by country, but generally there seems to be a reluctance, particularly by men, to wear a face mask. Elevating it to a fashion item seems an elegant way of changing perceptions…
I agree, medical single use masks give a negative feeling. If you use something that also expresses your style, it becomes a new accessory to complete your look. The secret is to help people feel differently while using it.
Can you see it becoming a wardrobe staple during the ‘new normal’?
I think we will have the masks in our collection for a long time, at least for another year. We have so many interesting designs in the pipeline, which we will launch after this Summer.
There’s no compromise when it comes to quality of finish. We can see people wanting to wear these, perhaps coordinating with ties and scarves…
Yes, many clients are ordering our masks so they can match the pocket squares and ties that we also sell. I think we have chosen the right communication messages when marketing these masks, as we are both able to help our customers focus their attention on style, but still with the sentiment of safety.
On a wider note, how has The Outlierman been affected by the pandemic? It’s been difficult for everyone…
Unfortunately, many collaborations that we had in the pipeline for this year have either been cancelled or postponed. This is also the case for some of our new products, which we hoped to add into our collection this year. The masks project gave us the opportunity to reconnect with our customers quickly. At the moment, we are working on new products with plans to follow the same approach as the masks, testing small quantities as always and offering in advance to our customer base.
To order your stylish face masks, and peruse other accessories, motor over to The Outlierman here.