Posts tagged with "app"

Make-up that is ‘self’-centered is L’Oreal’s next big bet

January 9, 2020

France’s fashion sense is timeless, simple, and elegant—but it is not entirely unobtainable. In fact, L’Oréal—the Paris-based beauty group— is betting big on its next product to help women everywhere transform themselves in a style that is uniquely and solely their own.

It’s a tiny device that’s only 6.5 inches tall and weighs just over one pound, but will enable makeup mavens to create personalized cosmetics at home, Fortune Magazine reports.

At the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas this month, the French cosmetics and personal products giant will debut a new hardware device called Perso, which whips up compressed beauty formulas from physical cartridges to create on-the-spot skincare, lipstick, and foundations.

Think of it like a mini makeup Keurig, Fortune suggests—but, instead of getting a specialized espresso drink, you’ll be creating a unique pink lipstick or skin cream.

It’s a long-term relationship with the consumer,” Guive Balooch, head of L’Oréal’s Technology Incubator, told the magazine in an interview on the show floor.

For skincare, Perso’s app will take into account the local air quality, temperature, humidity, and other factors that fluctuate and affect the skin. It then creates a recipe that even adjusts depending on if you are applying the skincare formula in the morning or the evening.

Perso’s hardware features a proprietary motor system located at the top of the device, which moves and compresses the formula from the cartridges at the base of the machine in an upward motion to the dispensing tray above for a clean application.

The lipstick option is more focused on playful trends. Perso has a base of three different colors: light pink, red, and purple, and to create a shade, users can take a picture of themselves and the app will then recommend a shade based on hair color, clothing and skin tone. Users can also create shades based on what’s trending on social media at the time.

Perso is essentially all about tech-enabled personalization, a trend making waves in a variety of consumer product categories, including apparel, food and beverage, and footwear.

“Everyone understand the value of personalization and no one owns that more than beauty because it is in their foundation,” Genevieve Aronson, VP of Communications at Nielsen told Fortune Magazine.

Embracing personalization is a way for beauty makers like L’Oréal to boost the industry’s sales. In-store beauty sales total approximately $37 billion in the U.S. market, but annual growth is reported at just 1% over the past two years, according to Nielsen. And yet personalized products are 1.7 times more likely to drive sales, says Aronson. So placing a greater emphasis on personalization can potentially help jolt beauty sales.

“The only way to achieve beauty for all is through technology,” says Balooch. “You can go to a [makeup] counter and find 40 to 50 shades of foundation. But the reality is, there are far more people with different shades than those options.”

In fact, testing for Perso hit a bit of a snag during the development process when Balooch and his team realized that the application wasn’t quite nailing skincare recommendations for individuals with darker skin tones. “It was a lot harder than we had anticipated,” Balooch says, adding that for foundation, 50% of women say they can’t find the exact shade they’d like at the store.

So L’Oréal spent an additional six months testing the product with 400 women, varying from very light to very dark skin. “We realized we had to measure peoples’ skintones, put the product on skin, and then achieve the match,” says Balooch.

Still, some key details need to be ironed out for Perso. Balooch says L’Oréal hasn’t yet solidified distribution for the Perso system and no-pricing structure has been set for the device or the cartridges that would need to be re-ordered over time. The goal is to launch the technology in 2021.

Research contact: @FortuneMagazine

‘Angerware’ app helps consumers punish unethical vendors

November 7, 2017

A pre-election CNN/ORC poll  has found that nearly 70% of Americans are either “very angry” or “somewhat angry” about the state of affairs nationwide. As one way of relieving their stress, many have adopted a new generation of shopping-assistant apps to help them avoid doing business with companies that don’t match their values.

“A lot of people are calling it ‘angerware’,” according to Erin Ferguson, founder and CEO of  the startup Shoulder Angel —a provider of ethics-driven shopping assistance software. “I suppose that description fits our Harvey Weinstein movie boycott feature well as any,” she continued, “but most of what we do is actually about positive action and the increasing willingness of Millennial consumers to spend more on goods and services they deem to be ethical and sustainable.”

Indeed, a Nielsen survey on ethical consumerism that was conducted around the same time as the CNN/ORC poll found that up to 66% of consumers would be willing to pay more for ethically responsible goods—and that figure climbs to 72% Millennials.

How does it work? The company says that its proprietary graph technology traces “multiple, complex ethical relationships” and provides the consumer with a variety of alternative purchases.”

For example, a consumer who is looking for contraceptive products would be warned by Shoulder Angel that her employer’s insurance plan no longer covers such necessities and steered to another option.

In addition, the app covers pending and approved legislation; as well as . the politicians who vote for those bills and the companies that give money to these politicians. It is not uncommon, therefore, for Shoulder Angel to warn a user against products that are “made by companies… that have funded politicians… who have voted against laws…”, when those laws adversely impact one of the user’s causes.

“The app was designed with Millennial consumers in mind,” stated Andrew Montgomery, Shoulder Angel’s Chief Technology Officer. “Thus far, cruelty free cosmetics are our number-one seller for this age group. Millennials seem to be less about anger than positive action.”

Shoulder Angel is freely available today from both the Apple iTunes and Google Play app stores.

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