Shop Urban Yogis Face Masks

Each Mask is Unique and Handcrafted in Laos by Local Artisans

The Story Behind our Face Masks

Our Connection to Laos

We have a very special connection with Laos. Back in 2012, Urban Yogis’ co-founder, Julie, moved to Luang Prabang, Laos, and grew a burgeoning yoga community that would be the melting pot of yogis and traveller from around the world. Along with the community cooperative, Luang Prabang Yoga, she ran a dozen retreats a year under Laos Yoga Retreats, an operation which merged as part of Urban Yogis in 2019. While the global pandemic has prevented us from returning to Laos for now, we continue to support our friends, many whose livelihoods have been affected by the border closures that have cut off tourism to the country.

Passa Paa and Hmong Artisans

Our masks are handcrafted by the local artisans at Passa Paa (IG: Passapaa), a Hmong artisan social enterprise. The contemporary designs are influenced by traditional Hmong patterns and motifs. During the pandemic, production has turned primarily towards making these beautiful masks. Passa Paa donates one mask to a local villager for every mask purchased from them. 

Urban Yogis has collaborated with Passa Paa to create our own, Urban Yogis branded face masks. These masks are handmade in Laos. Urban Yogis and Passa Paa thank you for supporting Laos artisans. 

Indigo Face Masks

Indigo dyeing is both a magical and scientific art and in Laos, this art is highly revered and worth celebrating. Creating an indigo dye bath is complex and has been mastered over many generations as a traditional practice of Hmong artisans. Yet as many Hmong have moved to larger towns and cities this art is at risk of being forgotten. This is one of the many reasons why Passa Paa works with Hmong communities; providing a sustainable source of income with the choice to stay in the village. Traditionally, the Hmong use indigo dye vats for dip dyeing their wax batik hemp. Meanwhile as Passa Paa explored alternative inks to screen print with, they discovered a way to use the precious blue residue that forms at the bottom of the indigo vats. This printing method has become a signature feature in Passa Paa’s textiles, and is now used as the outer decorative layer in their fabric face covers! In the Passa Paa prints you’ll find elements of motifs found in traditional Hmong textiles. 


The many different motifs symbolise life in the outside world, a life lived alongside the natural elements. The Hmong were traditionally a nomadic people and formed their communities in the mountain tops of Laos, so it is no wonder that their textile motifs reflect the world around them. You will find symbols that represent nature such as pumpkin seeds, elephants footprints, leaf fronds and the geometric patterns of their stepped rice fields. These motifs symbolise abundance, fertility, strength, protection and infinity and through incorporating them into their textile designs they pay homage and gratitude to their relationship with nature.