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The Japanese sense of aesthetic and sense of humour comes to fore despite the onset of flu season as well as the outbreak of the new flu (influenza virus). Manufacturers catering to the Japanese market have come up with different lines of designer flu masks and gauze mouth covers. Flu masks — that most fashionable accessory for hay fever sufferers and during influenza time has taken a turn for the kawaii, with cutesy pink lace masks and purple butterfly-design mouth covers.

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Blue surgical-style face masks are being worn by millions around the world in an effort to prevent contracting the swine flu H1N1 virus. In Japan, masks are a common sight anytime people are suffering from a cold, hay fever or other allergies. Now that world news report of the global swine flu spread, the situation indicates that wearing of masks in places other than hospitals or in Japan may become fashionable soon.

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That's why Japanese designers started making more out of those uniform white of blue masks by putting a little colour and design in them. There are lines that reflects the design of traditional Japanese kimono — to make sure that your outfit is coordinated from nose to toe. Other variants include a lacy number described as a “bra-type”, which mimics the silk, lace, and Lycra confections Japanese office ladies wear under their uniforms.

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