A woman wearing a facekini

The facekini (Chinese: 脸基尼; pinyin: liǎnjīní) is a mask designed for swimmers and beachgoers which covers the head and reveals only the eyes, nose, and mouth.[1][2][3] It was invented by Zhang Shifan in 2004, a former accountant from the coastal Chinese city of Qingdao[4] which became the hometown of this fashion trend.[5]

The mask is popular in Qingdao, where it is used by people for protecting themselves from tan-inducing ultraviolet rays while in direct sunlight and from jellyfish, insects and other irritants while at the beach.[1][6][7] The mask is made of a stretchy fabric that is commonly used in bathing suits,[8] and comes in different colors and patterns.[9] They are often worn in combination with various sun protecting clothing such as body suits with long sleeves, sunglasses, visors, or umbrellas.[10][11]

The facekini hit the Western press and attention in 2012, and its creator Zhang Shifan has also focused on the development of high-fashion masks.[12] In 2019, its creator launched new models that cover the whole body, not just the face and neck.[13][14]

A standard model costs $2 to $4, while fancier models are $16 to $24. In 2014, the fashion magazine CR Fashion Book published several sets of photos with models wearing facekinis paired with fashionable Alexander Wang and Michael Kors swimwear and jewellery.[15]

See also


  1. ^ a b Ye, Tianzhou (21 August 2012). "Facekini craze hits China beach". NBC News. Retrieved 21 August 2012.
  2. ^ Farrier, John (22 August 2012). "Fashion trend: The face-kini". Neatorama. Retrieved 22 August 2012.
  3. ^ "The facekini: China's new beach trend". The Sun Daily. Retrieved 24 August 2012.[permanent dead link]
  4. ^ "China's famous 'face-kini' gets Peking Opera-inspired facelift". Reuters. 15 July 2015. Retrieved 15 July 2015.
  5. ^ Kim, Monica; Campri, Luca (31 August 2017). "Meet the Facekini—China's Best Beauty Accessory for the Skin-Savvy Beachgoer". Vogue. Retrieved 12 September 2020.
  6. ^ Festa, Jessica (24 August 2012). "China's popular beach trend: The Facekini". Gadling. Retrieved 24 August 2012.
  7. ^ Levin, Dan (3 August 2012). "Beach Essentials in China: Flip-Flops, a Towel and a Ski Mask". The New York Times. Retrieved 21 August 2012.
  8. ^ Chittley, Jordan (21 August 2012). "Facekini: The newest beachgoing craze at Chinese beach". Yahoo news, Canada. Retrieved 22 August 2012.
  9. ^ Wilkinson, Isabel (21 August 2012). "Here's the face-kini, summer's new trend". The Daily Beast. Retrieved 21 August 2012.
  10. ^ Newcomb, Tim (21 August 2012). "The Face-Kini: The Bizarre Art of Covering Up". Time Newsfeed. Retrieved 21 August 2012.
  11. ^ "Face-kini, Face Mask Bathing Suit, Is Popular On Chinese Beach". Huffington Post US. 21 August 2012. Retrieved 21 August 2012.
  12. ^ "A Brief History of the Chinese Facekini". RADII | Culture, Innovation, and Life in today's China. 29 June 2017. Retrieved 12 September 2020.
  13. ^ "Facekini is back, this time even more bizarre". chinaplus.cri.cn. Retrieved 12 September 2020.
  14. ^ "New facekini designs hit the beaches of Qingdao". shanghaiist. 6 August 2019. Retrieved 12 September 2020.
  15. ^ Kirkpatrick, Nick (29 August 2014). "The 'facekini': From the beaches of China to pages of a fashion magazine". Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 12 September 2020.