Author: Dara Prant

Fashion and beauty brands are using their factories to produce everything from hospital gowns to hand sanitizers.

Photo: Alastair PIke/AFP/Getty Images

As Covid-19 continues to wreak havoc on communities across the world, fashion and beauty brands have announced plans to begin manufacturing products that will help prevent the infectious disease from spreading. LVMH joined the fight first when the luxury conglomerate announced Sunday that it would be turning its perfumes and cosmetics business into a hand sanitizer manufacturer and that it will distribute the sanitizers to French health authorities. The move was in response to shortages of the germ-fighting gel in France.

On Wednesday, L'Oréal leapt to humanity's aid by also offering up its factories to produce hand sanitizer. According to WWD, the beauty giant's brand La Roche-Posay will provide hydro-alcoholic gel to hospitals, nursing homes and main partnering pharmacies throughout Europe, while its other Garnier brand will dispense millions of units of the gel to all of its European clients in the food distribution channel.

"In this exceptional crisis situation it is our responsibility to contribute in every possible way to the collective effort," said Jean-Paul Agon, L'Oréal chairman and chief executive officer, in a statement to WWD. "Through these gestures, L'Oréal wishes to express its appreciation, support and solidarity with all those who mobilize with extraordinary courage and abnegation to fight against this pandemic."

Outside of the beauty realm, both small and large apparel brands have begun producing masks as the Coronavirus outbreak worsens. American Apparel's Dov Charney, offered up the workforce and management team behind his four-year-old label Los Angeles Apparel to manufacture masks or other medical products for "any government agency."

Later in the week and as the situation turned dire in Spain, Zara owner Inditex said it would produce hospital gowns and masks for patients and medical workers alike. Per a statement made to Vogue, the fast-fashion behemoth explained that it "will make a delivery at least once a week of materials we purchase directly."

In addition, the company said it is looking into switching some of its textile-manufacturing capacity over to the production of health materials. As of now, Inditex is only providing these much-needed products to people in Spain.