Dutch-created masks help everyone breathe cleanly in more ways than one.
While we've all been wearing masks to protect each other from the recent pandemic, unfortunately, those same masks have been doing harm to the environment. From wildlife getting tangled in carelessly disposed of masks to the sheer amount of non-biodegradable masks that are hitting landfills, the face coverings are a bit of an ecological nightmare. Not to mention the number of micro-plastics they are contributing to the environment.
As much as we all would like to stop wearing masks, it's more likely they will be with us long after the pandemic is more under control.
So, one graphic designer in the Netherlands has come up with a way to keep people and nature breathing freely.
Marianne de Groot-Pons created Marie Bee Bloom, a biodegradable mask company that constructs face coverings out of some surprising materials.
Made of rice paper, the masks can easily break down when thrown away, but they also contain a bonus benefit: seeds. Each mask is filled with a mix of Dutch meadow flower seeds that will sprout and bloom after being buried.
The idea is to wear your mask, as needed, then either plant it in a pot or your garden and watch the flowers grow. The flowers not only provide a beautiful sight but they help clear the air, and provide needed food for bees and other wildlife, as well.
The entire mask is biodegradable, including the cords, which are handspun from wool, and the glue is made from potato starch. Even the stamped logo is made from biodegradable materials. While they have been tested for protection level, they are on par with fabric face masks that are widely worn already.
Currently, the masks are only available in the Netherlands, Belgium, and Germany. But according to mariebeebloom.com, worldwide shipping is in the plans.
Would you buy this eco-friendly mask? Let us know in the comments.