Zoom filters: Zoom has video filters that will add effects such as virtual hats, masks, and beards that stay in place on the video of your head as you move and turn it: https://support.zoom.us/hc/en-us/articles/115002595343-Video-enhancements.

Synopsis for desktop software: You choose filters by clicking on the up-arrow next to the “Stop Video” icon along the bottom of the Zoom window. When a window pops up, choose Video Filter. Then choose the frame or filter you want. To remove the filter, click on the first button that says, “None.”

Snap Lenses: Snap Lenses, from SnapChat, are similar to Zoom filters, but have advanced 3-D features. To use them, download the free Snap Camera at https://snapcamera.snapchat.com/download/. After you install Snap Camera, you can search for lenses. To “save” a lens you like, click on the star to make it a favorite.

Then in Zoom, you go to video settings and choose the Snap Camera under the “Select a Camera” setting.

You can also search for a lens by entering the link for a particular lens in the search box.

There are thousands of lenses. Most will recognize a person’s head on the screen. Some will recognize two heads at the same time. Some will even recognize when you are holding a cat or dog, and apply the mask to your pet as well. Here a few you might like for a Mardi Gras or Guardians of the Galaxy costume party:

A virtual mask of Nebula, from Guardians of the Galaxy


A green virtual mask based on Gamora, from Guardians of the Galaxy



A blue virtual mask, based on Yondu, of Guardians of the Galaxy


A virtual mask of Baby Groot

Baby Groot

The face of a fluffy white kitten.

Zoom Cat Lawyer

a virtual gilded half mask; gold green and burgandy-purple

Mardi Gras 1

A virtual glitter and sequin Mardi Gras style mask, with purple gold and green glitter

Mardi Gras 3

A two-dimensional owl mask


Mardi Gras masks for two


More Mardi Gras masks for two


Still more Mardi Gras masks for two