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Megabrain part 1: Machine learning and AI ramps up beauty engagement

By Natasha Spencer

- Last updated on GMT

Megabrain part 1: Machine learning and AI ramps up beauty engagement

Related tags Personal care Cosmetics

Advanced technologies that utilise machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI) are making their way into cosmetics and personal care brands’ online stores and physical shelves, and into the homes of consumers.

These technologies are today, largely synonymous with productivity, efficiency and pleasure.

Rapid uptake

“Globally, there are still many cutting-edge technologies that are on the cusp of consumer adoption,”​ said Delon Wang, Trends Manager, APAC, at Mintel.

“As with all new innovations, there will always be a testing and adoption phase that needs to take place before these go mainstream,”​ added Wang.

In terms of these developments’ lifecycle, they are still at the early stage where rapid growth is on the up, but trust still needs to be built.

“Therefore, if trust is interpreted as reliability here, considering that mainstream adoption has not yet taken place, it is unlikely to be the case currently,”​ emphasised Wang.

“On the other hand, interest levels are definitely there and we can expect such technology to move past the emerging stage once factors such as reliability and cost, have proven to be worth mainstream adoption,”​ encouraged Wang.

When it comes to brands using machine learning and AI to interact and engage with consumers, Wang uses the example of ModiFace, an augmented reality startup that provides the technology to power apps for companies in the beauty and personal care industry, to indicate its success.


There have been notable product launches and collaborations in 2017 that represent the progression of the AI sphere within beauty and personal care. Delon Wang, Trends Manager, APAC, at Mintel, selected three of the most stand-out developments in 2017.

My Beauty Matches launched in 2017, which claims to be the world’s first personalised beauty product recommendation and price comparison website that uses machine learning and AI technology.

In November 2017, Shiseido acquired Giaran, a company with leading technology in AI platforms. Together, the duo strives to develop the consumer experience and take personalised beauty up a notch. The technology from Giaran includes virtual make up trials, tutorials, colour matching, personalised recommendations, along with face tracking and skin tone detection.

With an impressive list of international beauty players as clients, including Sephora, Shu Uemura, Clinique and Estée Lauder, ModiFace’s patented technology promotes its ability to perform beauty application simulations on live video, and to track facial features in precise detail.

Commenting on the beauty and personal care position in technological advancement compared with other industries, Wang pointed out: “The use of technology in beauty and personal care is definitely not lagging behind, but more can still be done to explore its usage further. The combination of AI’s analytical precision synergised with human expertise may prove itself to be a boon for the beauty industry.”

The second part of this article will be published on Tuesday 23rd January 2018.

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