First face mask vending machines rolled out in UK shopping centres

If you haven’t already purchased a mask, the odds are you soon will.

Not only is it now compulsory to wear a mask on public transport, but if we look at the measures being taken in European countries that have come out of lockdown, face coverings are set to become a new normal.

But what if you pop to the shops and realise you’ve forgotten your facial protection?

Introducing Vendamask, the UK’s first ever vending machines dedicated solely to the supply of professional grade masks.

“I came up with the idea after seeing my friends London based suit manufacturing business struggling due to the pandemic. At the time, it was difficult to get hold of a mask and I equally didn’t have confidence that other masks were made with strict safety measures in place,” Adam Freeman, founder of Maskey tells the Standard.

Launched in May 2020, Maskey has already installed machines in 10 shopping centres across London, Essex and Surrey and also by three underground stations Loughton, Chigwell and Woodford, and has plans to install a further 40 Vendamask locations over the next three weeks.

The masks, which cost £6-£8, are all made in London by a machinist wearing a face mask and gloves and within seconds of being completed, steamed at over 90 degrees and then instantly placed into a sealed plastic wallet. No one can enter the factory without a face mask and gloves and the entrance is protected by a double entry / exit system.

10 per cent of the profit from each sale will be donated to the charity Lenderhand, which is currently supporting the NHS along with individuals and families in need during this crisis. MASKEY have also been able to give jobs to seamstress’s, engineers and local people that were out of work due to lockdown.

Vending machines have a built-in card reader so that the customer just has to select the mask they want and use a contactless payment method such as their debit card or mobile phone to buy it.

“The vending machines give everyone instant accessibility to cover up in a variety of playful prints and keep safe whilst out and about,” says Freeman.


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