For this assignment, I’m building off of my proposal, which was an updated, more user-friendly air pollution mask. The approach I took to this design was one that Christian recommended, if it’s a problem for you, at least you have one potential user: yourself. Every time I wear an air pollution mask I think about how much I wish there was something better for me to use. Because I haven’t seen very many improvements on the product, I thought that I was the only one that cared enough about the issues that arise when wearing an air pollution mask.
One day in class we were discussion air pollution and potential solutions. A classmate remarked: aren’t the masks good enough? I countered by saying that there was a lot of room for improvement and another backed me up, specifically in regard to the issue of them rubbing off makeup. This exchange made me realise that the issues weren’t just my own issues, they must have been problems that everyone faced. To develop this product, I thought about all the issues I had when wearing a mask:
- Not aesthetically appealing (I kind of want to look like a Japanese delinquent teenager)
- Strenuous exercise (i.e. biking causes glasses to fog up)
- Makeup rubs off when wearing
- Single/few use
- A mask that covers the ugly mask
This mask would be something like a surgical mask, but with an interesting design and could cover an ugly, but effective mask. The patterns could be streetwear inspired.
This mask focuses on the practical usages for the mask, less fog when exercise, reusable, and doesn’t rub off as much makeup. This is accomplished by switching the material of which the mask is made. I’ve heard that a cotton handkerchief can be used to blot makeup without taking it off, so this is where I would start with the material to use. Less fog escaping the mask would have to be solved by the material of the mask or by modifying the vents on the actual mask.
My ideal, Japanese inspired mask, right material, minimalist design, replaceable filter, and embroidery on the design. This would also be streetwear-inspired, and probably look similar to the Nikka mask that is in my presentation to create a proper seal around the nose and mouth area. This mask will probably not be able to reduce the breath escaping and fogging up glasses.
The scarf is a departure from the mask idea for the most part. The air filtering qualities of the mask would probably be reduced, but in its place would be less steam escaping and a much more fashionable mask. It would use replaceable filters and a fan to help circulate air.
This idea comes from the designer Daan Roosegaarde and his partnership with ofo. A bike is fitted with a filter that filters polluted air, then blows clean air towards the rider. There is nothing more known about this project other than a diagram they created about the flow of air, so it seems they’re still figuring it out. Like the scarf, this filter cannot filter as much air as a mask would, but is functional for exercise, doesn’t rub off makeup, and is not an unattractive article of clothing. It’s also reusable.