Back in 2012, a Chinese beach accessory known as the “face-kini” began attracting worldwide attention.
The term face-kini gained online popularity years ago when Time Magazine showed off a picture of some Chinese beach-goers who wore the bizarre mask. Now, it seems the craze is back, but not in the way you’d expect. Recently, French magazine CR Fashion Book had their models sporting (you guessed it) face-kinis.
Despite the undeniable popularity of the face-kini, the beach accessory was never actually worn for the sake of fashion in China. The full head mask, often paired with a long-sleeved body suit, was a hit in China because of its ability to protect its user from the sun. The accessory helped with Asia’s questionable obsession with pale skin.
“I’m afraid of getting dark,” a face-kini wearer explained to The New York Times. “A woman should always have fair skin. Otherwise people will think you’re a peasant.”
While China used the mask as a way to retain paleness, CR Fashion Book, which was created by former editor-in-chief of French Vogue Carine Roitfed, saw the masks as an opportunity for fashion.
Check out the French fashion photos below and tell us what you think!