Many K-drama and K-pop stars wear surgical masks. I’m sure you’ve seen a few stars, and depending on where you live, even a few “regular” people wearing them. Remember back in the day when Michael Jackson would run all around in his surgical mask?! Sometimes he would even be totally over the top about it and wear a mask with sunglasses and a hat causing him to look a tad bit stranger than usual.

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But have you ever wondered why you’ve only really seen Michael Jackson (o_0) and many people in Asia wearing them? There are a variety of reasons as to why these masks are worn. Two major reasons for surgical masks are air pollution and germs. If you’re keeping up with your current events, then you know China has major air pollution issues causing some days to have worse air quality levels than others. Also, every so often their air pollution drifts on over to Japan and South Korea. The other major reason for surgical masks is to keep your germs to yourself. To keep the spread of germs and diseases at bay, people kindly wear surgical masks. For this reason I think Western culture should adopt surgical mask wearing, especially in the winter on the NYC subway trains (-_-). [caption id="attachment_174647" align="aligncenter" width="585"]Japantimes Japantimes.com[/caption] However, these surgical masks have taken on new, less than important roles. If you have a huge pimple, wear a mask! If you just bought yourself a brand new nose or entire face, wear a mask! If you’re too lazy to put on makeup and even BB cream, just toss your mask on. Even if you’re feeling blue and you don’t want people to see your current mood written all over your face, hide it by wearing a mask. Most importantly, Lee Min Ho taught us all in City Hunter that if you need to kidnap a political official and leave him in front of a large crowd for revenge, wear a black surgical mask; no one will ever be able to recognize you.

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It's for these reasons that wearing surgical masks have become “trendy.” Idols, school kids, and adults have all been spotted wearing super cute, colorful, and stylish surgical masks. Gone are the days of hospital issued blue and white; today you can get hot pink, multi colored, even textured and intricately designed masks! Check out some of these awesome masks I found!

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KrisE! @K_Kisses_KrisE

(Information sources via japantoday and globalpost.com)