We’re deep into the COVID-19 pandemic and things are still tough. But wearing masks seems to be an effective measure – especially when everyone wears them – to slow the rate of infection. By now, most people in the world are used to everyone wearing masks.
This is a new reality. But it has made us wonder: besides the health benefits, are there some unexpected freedoms that come with everyone wearing a mask?
Didn’t have the time or the patience to put on makeup? Wanted to feel anonymous today? No problem, you can just throw on a mask. You’ll be protected from virus droplets and you’ll be free of your social woes.
Cosmetics and Aesthetics
You wake up in the morning. You’re late. Your alarm clock didn’t ring. You never even set it. No time to freshen up. Leave. Now. Uh-oh, you forgot to brush your teeth. And you have no gum. But now that you live in the times of a pandemic, you can just cover you face with a mask and no one will ever know you have bad breath.
What about makeup? Again, if you didn’t have the time to get ready properly in the morning, then you don’t need to worry. You can get away without fully applying the cosmetics. If you must put on some makeup, then you could get away with only doing the top half of your face. The same goes for sunscreen. No need to apply over the full visage, the masks also protect against U.V. rays.
This extra little freedom hovers somewhere around the fine line between sinister and normal. With everyone wearing masks, there is no need to ever fully reveal your face (unless, you’re at the dentist, or getting a photo I.D. picture taken). Activists and anarchists must love this.
How you feel about this certainly depends on how you feel about anonymity and privacy. Do you cover your webcam with a piece of tape? Do you use incognito web browsers? Are you like Edward Snowden and shut off or remove your phone’s internal microphone? If you answered yes to any of these, then you might be someone who appreciates the extra anonymity in a world where everyone wears a mask.
We know that we’ve made an (possibly enfeebled) attempt to be kind of funny in this article. But wearing masks is no laughing matter. It’s strange that in some countries, the question of whether or not to wear a mask has become politicized. We should all just listen to the science; there’s good evidence that wearing a mask helps. And if you decide to wear a mask, you might enjoy some unexpected freedoms along the way.