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Retail Stores are Reopening: How to Stay Safe While Shopping for Clothes During a Pandemic


Few events have changed all of our lives as fundamentally as the recent pandemic has. We used to have the freedom to go wherever we wanted, whenever we wanted. But COVID-19 changed all of that, shuttering non-essential businesses and confining us to the safety of our homes for most of the past year.

Indeed, before the novel coronavirus, most of us didn’t pay much attention to the things that we do every day. Nowadays, we’re mindful of social distancing, what we come into contact with, how long we’re washing our hands for, and so on.

And as states begin to ease coronavirus lockdown measures, many retail stores have reopened for business. However, that doesn’t mean that it’s safe to let our guard down. Here’s how to protect yourself while shopping for clothes in the time of corona:

Keep Buying Your Clothes Online

Given that COVID-19 is primarily spread through close contact with infected persons, the easiest and most low-risk way to shop is through online stores. When you make all of your purchases from your phone or computer, you never have to worry about coming into contact with someone who may have the disease. From shirts and pants to your favorite Burlix socks and underwear, everything that you need is just a few taps away.

Of course, there are a few precautions that you should keep in mind when receiving any deliveries. Studies have shown that COVID-19 can survive on various surfaces, with the length of time depending on the type of material.

So once your packages arrive, it’s a good idea to leave them outside of the home for a day before bringing them inside. Alternatively, you could open the packages outdoors and only take their contents inside before washing your hands thoroughly.

As for what to do about the contents themselves, you can rest easy. Studies show that there are relatively low chances of catching the virus from coming into contact with soft, porous materials like fabric. But if you want to stay on the safe side, go ahead and wash your new purchases in hot, soapy water and let them dry before storing them in your closet.

Know What You’re Getting Before You Arrive at the Store

Before you decide to shop at a brick-and-mortar store, it’s a good idea to brush up on the CDC’s current guidelines on how to protect yourself from possible infections. These include maintaining a distance of six feet between yourself and others, wearing a face cover, and making sure not to touch your face with your hands.

It can also help to know what exactly you want to buy before making the trip. By doing so, you’ll spend a lot less time inside of the store, which can help minimize your potential exposure to the virus. Once you’re there, get what you need, then dash right out. 

Take Note of What the Store is Doing for Customers

Brands are aware that they must provide a safe shopping environment for all of their customers if they want to remain open during the pandemic. That said, you’ll want to shop at the stores that are visibly doing their best to protect their customers.

For instance, it’s a good sign if a store is limiting the number of people that can enter their premises at any one time. It also helps if the store associates are equipped with masks, face shields, or other personal protective equipment. If you can, try to find out how frequently the store is cleaned and disinfected for your own peace of mind, too.

Though fashion stores are doing their best to continue operating during these trying times, this doesn’t change the fact that we should stay vigilant. With a bit of forethought and consideration, you can take all of the necessary precautions to minimize your risk while shopping for clothes.

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