Pop singer/songwriter Lana Del Rey apparently wore a fishnet mask to a poetry reading in Los Angeles on October 2. She was also signing books and taking photos with fans during the event.
In the video she posted to Instagram, her teeth are visible through the netting as she talks during a livestream. Fans weren’t happy about her decision to wear a useless mask at a public event.
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Comments on the post shared concerns. Popular comments include “ur setting urself up at this point we cant defend you 💔💔,” “lana please wear a real mask i’m begging you be safe 😭,” “Uhm” and “lana sweetie what is this mask.”
Twitter has been riled up about it the past few days. While a lot of people made a joke of it, some were more polite about their criticism.
I love Lana Del Rey, I always have and I (likely) always will. Her music has been with me during every high and low of my life, and I’m thankful that she shares her music with us.
But that doesn’t mean I support everything she does. She knows better than to wear a mesh mask…
— Marquis (@MarquisAndLana) October 3, 2020
One fan said “she knows better” and another said “she’s so out of touch with reality.” Some were conflicted about the event, making sure to include an “ILY but” with their comments, but most weren’t afraid to call her out for it.
she’s so out of touch with reality / the times… it’s so embarrassing..
— ✰ austin (@imaustinryan) October 2, 2020
Some fans claimed that she was wearing a transparent filter, including one who was there at the poetry reading. While there isn’t any visible barrier, there’s still a possibility that is hard to confirm from just the photos and video.
— flop🇯🇲 (@ACEmakesnoise) October 3, 2020
Christopher Sulmonte, who works in Johns Hopkins Hospital’s biocontainment unit as a project administrator, confirmed to The Washington Post that “If the mask is in fact entirely mesh (as it is not completely clear from the photo if there is a clear barrier behind it), then this mask would be ineffective in its purpose of minimizing the spread of respiratory droplets.”
Even with a filter, Sulmonte pointed out that masks should be made of fabrics with a “high thread count, such as cotton” and concluded that Del Rey’s mask “provides no protection to those around the wearer.”
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends face coverings with at least two layers of breathable fabric, and there are health experts who say three layers is ideal. If Del Rey is actually wearing a single layer, it would still fall short of recommendations.
It’s also worth pointing out the likelihood that a fishnet mask might not fall into the “face covering” requirement for the Barnes and Noble she was at. Beyond that, she wasn’t keeping her distance from fans while posing with them for photos.
Apparently, she had worn the mask publicly at least once before, as evidenced by the cover photo of Interview Magazine’s September edition. Interview Magazine did not endorse the mask and noted that it was Lana’s own, but not who made it.
Del Rey has yet to comment on her decision to wear the mask, but she did recently post evidence of her wearing a ‘proper mask’ to her fans’ relief.
Photo credit: Sharon Alagna