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  • Mz Sakhrani

Is machine learning determining what makes a person beautiful?

Updated: Apr 23, 2018


The ever controversial world of beauty is changing, sifting and moulding in more ways than one.


Since the beginning of mankind beauty has always been one of the most sought after attributes, for both males and females. Whether you believe you have it or not, most of us are willing to go the extra mile to look better. From buying the latest in skincare, to undergoing plastic surgery, this constant need to look (and therefore feel) good, has created a very lucrative and yet, subjective industry.


These days, not only are women spending more on skincare than ever before but, are using everything from social platforms, to apps to augmented reality to make their purchase decisions.


Beauty brands are quick to respond by integrating various digital, social and tech platforms to influence the way women discover, interact and purchase their beauty products.


@Selicous we have collaborated with a number of tech companies in Singapore leveraging the latest in skincare and facial recognition technology.


We aim to use this technology to educate & empower beauty brands, big and small, on how they can leverage these technologies in a cost effective, scalable manner that will allow for delivering immersive, customer centric solutions.


1st Act; Augmented reality.


Augmented reality is not a stand alone technology. Integrated with other digital touch-points, it allows beauty brands to create seamless consumer journeys.


By integrating social media or websites + augmented reality technology + 3rd party e-comm partners + e-payment + delivery, brands are creating a seamless interactive & engaging journey that serves to communicate effectively with their consumers at each stage of his or her beauty journey.


Translation: This integrated customer centric strategy not only serves your consumer well but serves to drive higher conversion rates, LTV (Life Time Value), and basket sizes for e-comm & retail partners generating greater business impact.


One example of this integration can be demonstrated by using chatbot technology (Facebook Messenger), combined with Augmented Reality (AR) technology, to help consumers try on multiple shades of lipsticks, foundations, eyeshadows and many more beauty products virtually, before eventually choosing and purchasing the product/s on a e-comm site.


This integration, if executed well, is well positioned to enable users to discover and engage with your brands’ latest products in a fun interactive socially scalable manner.


Several beauty brands, particularly in North America & Japan, have been actively experimenting “advanced facial tracking and simulation technology”, to personalise their skin care and cosmetic products to their audiences needs with great success.


However, augmented reality is just one of several emerging technologies that are being integrated into social / digital platforms. Another exciting technology beauty marketers should be looking towards is artificial intelligence.


2nd Act;


This is where we feel, beauty leaders have to step up and assume responsible, mindful articulation when utilising these technologies.


Example: Leveraging AI is great if you’re a brand like Proven.


Proven is a beauty brand that uses machine learning to create personalized skincare products for each and every individual. Machine learning is able to learn connections between different product categories, ingredients, product reviews, and then offers ingredient recommendations for personalised consumer products.


Their mission is to use artificial intelligence to improve the daily lives of women, and they do this by leveraging AI to create truly personalized skincare formulations to suit their consumer’s skin, environmental, lifestyle and hormonal needs. Not only will they create and deliver this very personalised product to consumers but will tweak the formulations every eight weeks

to evolve with their consumers environmental and life changes.


Other skincare companies are also using machine learning to combat serious skincare issues such as acne. Machine learning is used to analyze users’ skin type, skin goals and medical history. This information is then used to match consumers with a medical professional who then designs custom formulas to target individual’s skin care needs.


SO that’s the good stuff.


However, if utilised poorly, this powerful machine learning could backfire ferociously.


Some women who have used AI tech to detect skincare challenges have reported feeling worse after using the technology.


Some AI platforms / apps have been built with powerful machine learning algorithms that enable it to detect wrinkles, face symmetry & shape, skin color to determine or rate how beautiful an individual is. Women reported walking away feeling old, ugly and deflated after using such platforms.


Brands must be mindful as they start using AR & AI. These powerful technologies impact consumers; physiologically and emotionally and with this, responsible use of the technology for the benefit of the end consumer must remain the focus.


@Selicious, while we are understand the beauty industry is one that is controversial and full of contradictions, we consistently advocate beauty marketers craft beauty marketing communication strategies “with a social conscious”.


AR & AI should leveraged for all its capabilities to empower women by democratising the beauty industry; allowing men & women to make better, personalised purchase decisions about their skincare needs and wants.


So as a beauty marketer, where do you start?


Good question.


If you’re interested in learning more about augmented reality / AI platforms and integrating these platforms for you beauty campaigns, reach out to us @ csakhrani@selicious.com.sg and we’ll be happy to demonstrate how these platforms could be leveraged to achieve your marketing objectives.


- Selicious Team

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