Scarily Hyper-Realistic Face Masks for Sale in Japan

One year after the first COVID-19 outbreak, this Japanese retailer has come up with a new take on face masks... and it's a little bit freaky.

This hyper-realistic mask models a stranger's features in meticulous detail. Although Shuhei Okawara's masks don't have the ability to protect you from the coronavirus, they will lend you the appearance of an unidentified Japanese adult.

"Mask shops in Venice probably do not buy or sell faces. But that is something that’s likely to happen in fantasy stories," Okawara said. "I thought it would be fun to actually do that."

The masks will go on sale in early 20201 for 98,000 yen ($950) apiece at his shop in Tokyo called Kamenya Omote. The store sells products that are popular accessories for parties and theater.

Over 100 applicants sent Okawara their photos when he launched the project in October. He paid a model 40,000 yen to use his likeness; an artisan then reworked the image and used a 3D printer to bring the mask to life.

Okawara believes that there will be strong demands for these masks.

"As is often the case with the customers of my shop, there are not so many people who buy (face masks) for specific purposes. Most see them as art pieces," he said.

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