I visited a COVID-19-themed boutique selling high-priced 'essentials' to wealthy shoppers in high-end malls alongside Hermes and Louis Vuitton stores – see inside

  • COVID-19 Essentials is a chain of eight stores that sell high-end gadgets and accessories aimed at surviving the pandemic is convenience, luxury, and style.  
  • We visited its Short Hills, New Jersey location, and found a popular store filled with themed masks, metal door openers, and mask pouches. 
  • Shoppers seeking Clorox wipes and disposable surgical masks need not enter as they won't find them here.
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

COVID-19 Essentials is one of the newest additions to The Mall at Short Hills, a high-end shopping mall near Morristown, New Jersey.

A short drive from New York City and mere feet from the highway, the suburban mall boasts nearly 200 stores with brands such as Neiman Marcus, Jimmy Choo, and Gucci, just to name a few. Peloton and Tesla even have storefronts here.

And while regular shoppers might be accustomed to seeing the thousand-dollar handbags of Louis Vuitton or red-bottomed shoes of Christian Louboutin, COVID-19 Essentials is undoubtedly an eye-catcher amidst a sea of luxury. Still geared towards the wealthy, the eight-store chain, according to the New York Times, markets the so-called essentials for surviving the pandemic beyond the standard face masks and hand sanitizer. 

The high price tags that some of the items wear would probably turn the average shopper away at a mall in Middle America but its popularity in Short Hills and elsewhere shows that the rich are living through the pandemic a little differently.

Take a look inside COVID-19 Essentials. 

The Mall at Short Hills is New Jersey's self-proclaimed "premier shopping destination" with no shortage of high-end retailers.

Its stores include the likes of Burberry…

Christian Louboutin…

And Louis Vuitton.

But just next to the Swarovski store is an up and coming retailer that's a true product of the pandemic.

COVID-19 Essentials became the mall's newest store in August, offering a unique take on personal protective equipment and everything one might need to survive the pandemic.

If the name itself wasn't enough to draw people in, the window display gives a glimpse at the store's elaborate mask selection with themes ranging from breast cancer awareness to steampunk.

A temperature taking tablet greets all guests at the door though no staff was mandating its use. It was not for sale, either.

Within seconds I was given the green light to enter the store.

The store is largely dedicated to cloth masks, different varieties and designs of which line both walls.

There's seemingly no shortage of fun designs and themes including tie-dye…




And Hello Kitty.

Car enthusiasts will also enjoy the Maserati and Mercedes Benz-themed masks.

And for athletes, this mesh mask claims to fit tighter and more secure to the face than "flimsy paper masks" and a filter helps ensure a steady flow of clean air.

A similar mask comes with a filter that actively blows cool air inside the mask.

It keeps the area covered by the mask from becoming hot by blowing a steady stream of purified air.

And if the store doesn't have the desired design, customers can craft a custom design.

Here's the selection of patches, which cost $10 each, in addition to the $20 mask.

Rhinestones are also an option for $15.

Here's the workstation where it's done.

There's also a clearance wall where masks are slightly cheaper.

Three center tables are then dedicated to COVID-19-related gadgets and accessories.

This handheld device is a UV wand that claims to cleanse surfaces of viruses.

A larger version claims to disinfect items such as masks or a cell phone.

Perhaps the most interesting, yet basic devices, are these metal door openers.

Basically a stylus for your hand, the device goes around the user's finger. The tip can be used to press buttons while a hook can be used to grab handles and open doors.

Plastic inserts are also sold that help keep masks from ruining makeup.

Mask accessories then line the other side of the table, including lanyards that can be attached to the mask for when they're not being used.

Instead of putting masks down on a table, the lanyard holds them around the wearer's neck.

As an alternative, these pouches can be used to store masks when they're not being used.

The store also sells the solution to the problem of smelly masks in form of non-toxic mask spray.

And, of course, hand sanitizer is also available for purchase.

Source: Read Full Article