Who would've thought that facekinis — those terrifying ski masks worn by many Chinese beach-goers — would one day make waves in the fashion world?
The brightly colored masks were first spotted on Chinese beaches in the summer of 2012 and have since become a common sight. They cost around $2.50 and are the stuff of nightmares.
— artFido.com (@artFido) October 14, 2013
They're especially popular among middle-aged Chinese women seeking to protect their skin from sun damage.
— Branden (@kfooury) August 15, 2014
Beauty standards vary around the world, as we know. While some folks head to the beach for a tan, these ladies consider fair skin a sign of wealth and attractiveness. And the facekini proves they'd rather look ridiculous than bronze.
— Brad Wilke (@jbwilke) October 15, 2013
Facekinis have been mocked on social media, and it's easy to see why. But at least one fashion editor reckons they could be the next big thing.
Former Vogue Paris editor Carine Roitfeld has just published a photo shoot of models wearing facekinis and some very expensive swimsuits in her magazine, CR Fashion Book.
— Dualshine (@Dualshine1) August 15, 2014
“While our summer beauty routines are devoted to bronzing, self-tanning, and tan-extending, in Asia, beauty-seekers are more likely to center theirs around lightening and brightening,” the editorial reads. “A tan does not signify a chic trip to Capri, but it could mean hours of hard labor spent out in the harsh sun."
— EastSunnet (@Eastsunnet_) August 15, 2014
Okay, so maybe facekinis look just as weird in a high-end fashion magazine as they do on a beach.
But there's at least one reason to hope that facekinis go mainstream: skin cancer.