The rise of virtual beauty – from augmented reality make-up to face workouts

Lockdown has forced the beauty industry to create more innovative ways of getting their products to shoppers with many turning to technology to do this. Reporter LOTTIE KILRAINE examines the top beauty tech developments in the lead up to Valentine’s day.

For many, makeup and beauty routines are one way of staying sane and keeping some consistency during the endless zoom quiz’s and email checking.

With Valentine’s day (and Galentine’s day) this weekend, now is the perfect time make the most of all of the wonders of the new virtual beauty world.

First up is Pinterest’s Try On feature designed to help users test out new makeup looks before splashing out on expensive products.

Using the mobile app, shoppers can now try on different shades of lipstick from brands including Estée Lauder, bareMinerals, L’Oreal, YSL Beauté, Lancôme, and Urban Decay, to name but a few.

Similar to those pre-pandemic days when you could walk into a shop but this time from the comfort (and safety) of your own home.

Via Pinterest

Launching the app online, Pinterest announced: “As we focus on building inclusive products, we’ve integrated Try On with our skin tone range feature, so Pinners can see similar lip shades on skin tones that match their own.

“With Try On, you won’t find skin smoothing or image altering effects that make you look less like you – as you might see on some other technologies.

“We believe in celebrating you, and so our augmented reality won’t be augmenting your reality, but rather helping you to make happy and real purchases for your life.”

The esteemed makeup brand, and makeup artist, Charlotte Tilbury has taken this idea one step further and is now allowing shoppers to get the store experience from their living rooms – no face masks needed.

Shoppers can get a free 15-minute consultation, via video link, on skincare, foundation and beauty tips – with paid options also available for makeup masterclasses from £25-£45.

Charlotte Tilbury is also offering a free Valentines consultation for gift advice and ‘date night’ looks for anyone struggling with a last minute present idea.

It is also a given that everyone is eagerly awaiting to be reunited with their hairdresser – kitchen DIY hair salons just aren’t cutting it.

Redken’s new virtual hair colour tool allows you to find the perfect hue for your locks and book a digital consultation with one of the Redken team, whilst L’Oréal and Garnier both have free apps that allow you to upload a photo of yourself for new hairstyle inspiration.

Finally, with the gyms remaining closed for the foreseeable future and home workouts being the only option – how about a workout for your face?

FaceGym offers virtual personal training sessions teaching ‘face cardio’ to help improve circulation and lymphatic drainage.

It’ll set you back £45 for a one-on-one PT session, however FaceGym does also offer free 15-minute IG Live masterclasses over on their Instagram page every Wednesday.


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