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#Culture: Fashion Brands Are Developing Anti-Virus Fabrics. Safety And Style? Take My Money

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The coronavirus pandemic has brought upon a dramatic change in our lifestyle. I never would have thought in a million years that I’d be scared to touch anything outside my house and would not go out without fearing for my life. But that’s coronavirus for you, rewriting the rules and the normal.

And, this is not limited to buying groceries or meeting people outside. It has also made us take a hard look at our wardrobe and reflect upon our buying habits. From questioning our choices regarding hoarding ton of clothes which have no use for us anymore since we spend all day in our PJs, to doubting if we are washing them enough. We’ve been forced to take a cold, hard look at our fashion choices.

Speaking of fashion in the pandemic, the ever-so flourishing industry has taken a 180-degree turn. With fashion weeks being called off, face masks becoming the new (and only) fashion accessory and retail business tanking or definitely going south, the the future of fashion is uncertain and bleak. In the times of corona, what’s actually selling is antimicrobial textiles to make masks and PPE suits. Taking inspiration from this, fashion connoisseurs are also thinking about future and coming up with antiviral fabric to ensure safe fashion.

Studies show that this virus can live up to 48 hours on fabric which poses a health risk. Repeating the pair of clothes you wear to the grocery shop or bank isn’t an option and hugging someone in those clothes is like an invite. Unless we can get our hands on the Covid vaccine, this fear is not going anywhere. That is why the fashion brands worldwide are investing in antiviral fabric development to stave off the risk of transmission through clothes.

Also Read: 5 Ways In Which Shopping Is Likely To Change After Coronavirus. Think Virtual Trial Rooms And The Like

Some international textile brands have already developed an antiviral technology for its fabric. One of them is Swiss brand HeiQ that introduced Viroblock technology in March that claims to kill 99.9% of SARS-CoV-2, coronavirus within 30 minutes of coming in contact with the fabric. The fabrics are coated with an invisible film that kills the virus. The Viroblock film works on the fabric for 30 laundry cycles. They apparently started working on this project in 2013 and unveiled the antiviral products just in time to fight the virus in March, 2020.

Closer home, fashion brands like Peter England and Arvind fashions are also eyeing the opportunity to make antiviral fabrics that will be healthier option as it will fend off bacteria and virus on the clothes as soon as it comes in contact with them. They have partnered with HeiQ for their antiviral collections. However, it doesn’t yet guarantee that it will inhibit the particular Covid-19 virus in question as the fabric’s “resistance to COVID-19 is yet to be assessed”, according to the disclaimer by Peter England.

Another Indian brand Freakins which offers denim garments for women, including jeans, skirts, tops, joggers, dresses, shirts and jackets is soon launching an antiviral process. They were already making antiviral denim masks with 100% sterilization and are now foraying further into safe fashion by launching clothes treated with an AV40 antiviral chemical process for all its fabric for its next collection. All the products will be treated with the antiviral chemical treatment to kill 100% of bacteria and virus. The treatment will work on the fabric for up to 40 washes.

The brand says that the denim pieces treated with AV40 will be skin-friendly and hygienic and fit for every day use. Plus, it claims that the antiviral chemical treatment to will not only prevent the viruses and kill bacteria, but will also keep “the potential for re-transmission of pathogens from textiles to surface” in check.”

Talking about the new launch, Sachin Shah, owner of Avadat Apparels (parent company of Freakins) said, “As a brand, we are constantly investing in R&D to curate ethical fashion that caters to the needs of our customers. Covid-19 has made consumers realise the kind of risks they are exposed to when it comes to their lifestyle. The receptiveness to products that are long-lasting and hygienic has increased amongst the audience; foreseeing this at the early stage gave us a chance to create this work model that would help everyday fashion in the long run. We believe as a united front we can overcome these times with the necessary precautions adhered to”.

This is without a doubt a revolutionary innovation in fashion and a seemingly attractive product in the times when we are desperate to get our hands on anything that kills this virus (just keep it away from my life). But since there is no proof and just claims by the brands that the technology is effective enough to fend off the coronavirus, how sure can we be?

With WHO revising its Covid guidelines every other day, I doubt anybody fully knows or understands this invisible enemy we are dealing with. However, I sincerely hope that it actually works out well and we can finally worry about one less thing—our clothes, but until it does, we can’t be too sure.

Also Read: Baba Ramdev’s Patanjali Claims To Have Found An Ayurvedic Cure For Coronavirus. Twitter Is Amused And So Are We

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