KISSIMMEE, Fla. – The coroanvirus pandemic caused many businesses to adjust to stay afloat, including a Kissimmee store that sells shapewear and compression garments.
Ray Brown, the manager of Femine and FormRX, said he knew he had to change his business model when the pandemic started. The store makes customized compression garments and shapewear for men and women who undergo surgeries.
Brown said their business stopped after Gov. Ron DeSantis canceled elective surgeries due to the coronavirus.
"They were completely at a standstill, so our business dropped to zero," Brown said.
Brown reshaped his shop. Instead of making garments, the staff is sewing high quality face masks using sterile wrap. Brown said they can make up to 500 masks a day.
He said the mask is made using medical-grade material that is used to sterilize medical instruments for surgeries.
"It lends well to breathing, it lends well to cleaning, and it has a very high bacterial filtration," Brown said.
He adds the material has good abrasion resistance, is resistant to lint and can be washed multiple times.
"You're able to wash it more times. I tell people maybe 20 washes, but if you're careful you can get significantly more than that," he said.
Osceola County Emergency Management Director Bill Litton said those qualities are what he liked about the masks. His department ordered thousands of them for first responders and front line workers.
Litton said they will help maintain the county's personal protective equipment supply.
"We've been sourcing products not only here in the state, trying to do stuff locally, and it's a worldwide incident," Litton said. "Trying to find product is a little bit hard."
He adds this is a great way to support a local business and he hopes to continue working with Femine in the future.
"It was neat to get one type of item that we could partner with one of our local entities, even though it's not their normal business, they repurposed their business to support the mission here in Osceola," Litton said.
Brown said they are doing their part to help protect those who are serving the community during the pandemic.
"They have a difficult job. They're out there all day long and it's good to give them something that is comfortable and something that is also very effective," Brown said.
Brown said the masks are for sale online and wholesale orders can be placed by calling 863-370-0527.
Click here to follow updates from the Osceola County Emergency Management department.