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What are the latest technologies redefining the beauty and cosmetics industry?
In the past few years, the world has witnessed the rise of several game-changing technologies, such as artificial intelligence (AI), augmented reality (AR) and 3D printing. In this article, we will discuss the new technologies that are being incorporated into the world of beauty and taking the beauty and cosmetics industry to whole new heights.
ModiFace Skin AI:
ModiFace Skin AI was launched on Sep 12, 2016. This new tool was developed by dermatologists to measure the precise state of skin and observe any potential skin changes in live video. This app was launched by ModiFace, a leading provider of augmented reality technology for the beauty and medical industries. With the consultation of a group of dermatologists, this technology is able to detect and quantify minute changes in the skin, such as dark spots, discoloration, dryness, uneven skin, and rosacea. This app can visualize the changes before and after the use of any beauty product.
ModiFace Skin AI is mostly based on observations and specific input from dermatologists. For skin-care products, this AI technology is available either in the form of a mobile app or web-API capable of skin assessment and app-based or web-based visualizations of the change in the condition of the skin after the use of a product. Modiface’s patented technology comes after a decade of research at Stanford University and is used in AR apps for some of the biggest players in the beauty industry, including Allergan, L’Oreal, Unilever, Yves Rocher, and Sephora.
L’Oreal’s Kérastase Hair Coach:
The Kérastase Hair Coach was launched on Jan 3, 2017 and is the world’s first smart hair brush. It was developed by Kérastase, a leader in professional hair care, in partnership with Withings, a leader in the connected health revolution, and in collaboration with L’Oréal’s Research and Innovation Technology Incubator.
The brush consists of the following:
- A microphone to measure frizziness, dryness, split ends, and breakage.
- 3-axis load cells that measure the applied force on the scalp while brushing.
- An accelerometer and gyroscope for analyzing brushing patterns and brush strokes.
- Conductivity sensors for measuring whether the brush is being used on dry or wet hair and detecting hair quality during and after brushing the hair.
This hairbrush is also equipped with signal analysis algorithms designed by L’Oreal to assess the quality of hair and monitor the effects of different hair care routines. This algorithm is accompanied with a mobile app that recommends customized products for improving hair care. The information feed from the users can be uploaded to the dedicated app, which then takes into account weather factors such as temperature, humidity, and wind. The video below demonstrates how the brush works:
This joint venture technology between Kérastase, Withings, and L’Oréal was the recipient of the International CES Innovation Award, 2017 for outstanding product designing and engineering in new customer technology products. Guive Balooch, Global Vice President of L’Oréal’s Research and Innovation Technology Incubator said about this technology:
“By using connected technologies to upgrade the hairbrush — something the average consumer uses every day — Withings and Kérastase have reinvented what a person’s relationship with their hair can look like and are showing how connected devices can revolutionize the beauty industry.”
Estée Lauder’s Nighttime Expert App:
Estée Lauder is competing in the market with its launch of the ‘Nighttime Expert’ app announced on Nov 16, 2017. The Nighttime Expert app is a collaboration between Estée Lauder and Google to enable a chat experience for its users, giving leverage to a personalized nighttime skincare routine. Estée Lauder is one of the first beauty brands to start the collaboration with the Google Assistant on Google Home. This app became available in December of 2017, and Estée Lauder is planning to expand this beyond the Nighttime Expert app in early 2018.
To use this app, all a user has to say to their Assistant on Google Home is “Ok Google, can I talk to the Estée Lauder Nighttime Expert.” This chat experience gives the users an opportunity to have personalized skincare recommendations after evaluating the skin quality with a series of Q&A sessions followed by an opportunity to learn skincare application techniques if wanted.
Shiseido’s IoT-Based Skincare System “Optune”:
The Japanese beauty brand Shiseido declared on Dec. 13 of 2017 that it is going to launch its β version of skincare system called ‘Optune’ in Spring 2018 in Japan. This is a personalized app which gets modified and adapted according to the skin environment of each individual. They have their own algorithm that can choose the best conditions of the skin along with the tones to achieve a moisturized state in each individual. Optune couples digital technology with cutting-edge beauty research and skin science to optimize the personalized skincare experience.
The Optune System consists of 2 parts:
(1) ‘Optune Zero’/‘Optune App’, which monitors changes. It collects all the data related to personalized information like menstrual cycle, mood, and environmental conditions like temperature and humidity. It can also determine patterns of necessary skincare in real-time. The user can access the data and review a record of their changes provided by Optune.
(2) ‘Optune Shot’, which “fits your skin perfectly” as described by Shiseido is a skincare product that is filled in a cartridge placed in a special machine. The system is called TimeTune® care and focuses on the daily biological rhythm. TimeTune® care consists of serum care adapted to skin condition at different times and moisturizer care for morning and night. This 2-step care is designed after the analysis of over 1,000 patterns of serum and moisturizer combinations.
Samsung S Skin:
In the first week of Jan. 2017, Samsung launched S Skin. This is still in the concept phase, and it is a prototype from Samsung’s C lab department. This video explains it:
This skincare product analyzes the conditions of skin like dryness or skin tone with a combination of cameras, photosensors, and conductivity sensors. S Skin gives a recommendation of how to improve the skin along with skin therapy by integrating micro-needle patches which contain crucial skincare products like collagen.
Rimmel’s “Get the Look” 3D makeup simulation app:
In addition to AI-based beauty innovations, British cosmetics company Rimmel introduced a 3D simulation app in a press event that took place in London on June 30, 2016. This app was developed in conjunction with the digital agency, Holition. The “Get the Look” app allows users to take a photo of a makeup look and then try the look on themselves.
Perfect Corp’s YouCam Makeup App:
Combining AI and AR technologies, Perfect Corp unveiled that it will be debuting its flagship app, YouCam Makeup, at the 2018 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. Similar to Rimmel’s “Get the Look”, the app will allow users to take a photo of a makeup look and then try that exact look on their own face using AR. It will also allow real-time AR hair coloring, allowing users to experiment with different shades on their own hair. Selecting a new hair color will become a fast, easy and fun experience.
Technology is assisting the cosmetics industry to blossom into its full form. Presumably, we are heading towards a world with increasingly greater integration between technology and beauty.
Tanima is currently doing her post-doctoral studies at the University Clinic Regensburg in Germany. She completed her PhD in Immunology and Neurobiology in 2014 at Leibniz Institute for Neurobiology and Institute for Clinical Immunology, Magdeburg, Germany. Before which, she obtained her Master's degree in Zoology with a specialization in Immunology from the University of Calcutta, India and her Bachelor's degree in Zoology from Visva-Bharati University, India. Tanima defines herself as a life-long learner, avid reader, and scientific writer. She is intrigued by different aspects of science from biomedical research, nanotherapeutics to artificial intelligence. Connect with Tanima on LinkedIn!