Uniqlo's fast-drying face masks debut in Japan, long queue formed

19, Jun. 2020

Uniqlo Co.'s new flagship store in Tokyo's Ginza shopping area, named Uniqlo Tokyo, is shown to the media on June 18, 2020, a day before its opening. (Kyodo)
Uniqlo Co.'s new flagship store in Tokyo's Ginza shopping area, named Uniqlo Tokyo, is shown to the media on June 18, 2020, a day before its opening. (Kyodo)

TOKYO, Kyodo - Fast Retailing Co. began selling Friday its washable and fast-drying face masks at its Uniqlo stores in Japan amid concerns about the novel coronavirus, with shoppers forming a long queue at one of its stores in the upscale Ginza shopping district.

The masks, which are sold in a pack of three, are made of the same material as its Airism underwear products, and are available in three sizes -- small, medium and large. Due to massive demand following the product's debut, customers were having trouble accessing the online shopping site of the operator of Uniqlo casual clothing store chain.

Numbered tickets at the Ginza store to purchase the masks, which cost 990 yen ($9.30) for the three-pack, were distributed, but by noon, masks for the day were sold out.

"We would like to continue providing masks to many of our customers," a spokesperson said.

According to the retailer, the new mask, which has three-layers and includes a filter, is able to maintain its basic efficacy even after being washed 20 times.

Purchases are limited to one pack per size per person, and the company plans on manufacturing 500,000 packs a week, it said, adding that it also plans to offer the masks at Uniqlo stores overseas. (Kyodo)