Stay Beautechful

Did you know that the skin is the largest organ of the human body?

In the average adult, it weighs approximately six pounds, which is nearly twice the weight of the human brain or liver. The skin acts as a protective barrier, working hard to protect our bodies from harmful elements in the environment. Now with this in mind, it should be rather apparent to you why it’s so important to take good care of your skin. Keeping your skin healthy and moisturized is crucial because it allows this organ to do its function better and longer, fighting signs of aging, healing faster, and preventing diseases or infections more effectively. Plus, your skin is constantly changing, shedding its old cells every minute of your life as new ones form. This means that taking care of your skin isn’t simply a once-in-a-while task, but rather a vital part of your daily routine.

Do you have a skincare routine, or do you go to bed each night without worrying too much about the condition of your skin? Ladies and gents, let me say this loud and clear: SKIN CARE IS A MUST! For my ‘Queer Eye’ fans, grooming and skincare guru Jonathan would testify to this. (PSA: if you haven’t seen this show yet, I highly recommend adding it to the top of your Netflix queue. And get your tissues ready.) As Jonathan said, a good beauty routine isn’t just for the ladies: “I want to show straight men and gay men alike that self-care and grooming isn’t mutually exclusive with like, femininity or masculinity.” Real talk. We all admittedly spend more time than we probably should on our phones, laptops, or anything else that’s unproductive. But according to Jonathan, taking three minutes of your day to preserve your skin is actually a productive use of your time—and doubles as relaxation. He preaches that self-care is both an internal and external job. It’s practicing mindfulness and spirituality, drinking enough water, getting good sleep, and incorporating all the beauty and grooming routines into your daily life. “You have to create little pockets of joy in your life to take care of yourself,” Jonathan proclaims in episode eight.

How your skin will look in ten or twenty years is highly dependent on how well you take care of it now. Whether we like it or not, our skin will inevitably start to show signs of aging. That means wrinkles, lines, discoloration, and other things you definitely won’t be looking forward to. But there’s good news! In recent years, disruptive technologies like artificial intelligence, machine learning, and augmented reality have been shaking the beauty and cosmetics industry at its foundation, taking it to unforeseen heights.

In the U.S. alone, the total revenue of the cosmetic industry is 62.46 billion USD. Skincare products make up the largest part of the cosmetic market, leading with 37 percent. As the future of beauty continues to evolve with the rise of personalization through technology, I firmly believe in its potential to redefine the beauty experience. Now, you must keep in mind that all skin types are different. It’s important to find the products that work well for YOU. Customizability is essential for the beauty industry in order to match the diversity and unique skincare needs of its consumers, and technology makes that possible.

Let’s discuss some of the technological breakthroughs that have been reinventing the world of beauty as we know it today.

Neutrogena 360

Neutrogena launched a 3D scanning technology powered device called Neutrogena 360, which allows for you to analyze your skin over a period of time and recommends products that are best suited for your skin conditions and needs. It was created in collaboration with tech startup FitSkin, whose technology allows Neutrogena to provide comparable imaging and analysis to those of professional dermatologists.

This revolutionary device, secured on the top of your iPhone, has 12 high-powered lights, 30-times magnification lens, and very precise sensors. It thoroughly scans the size and appearance of pores, the size and depth of fine lines and wrinkles, and the skin’s moisture levels. The collected data is then loaded onto the mobile Neutrogena Skin360 app, demonstrating all of the users’ personal stats. Through the app, users can receive expert advice, such as product recommendations. These products are exclusively from Neutrogena’s collection, making it easily accessible. As the device feeds the data to the app every time the skin is scanned, and more data is analyzed over time, the app uses machine learning to get smarter and more accurate in its recommendations with Neutrogena’s magnitude of clinical research and expertise.

Proven

This skincare brand allows you to take a comprehensive questionnaire through an AI-engine to analyze your skin, basic information about yourself, your lifestyle, your skin concerns, and your skincare regime. Upon completion, it sends you a custom-made report and recommends skincare products that are ideal for you. These products typically consist of a daily cleanser to remove toxins, an anti-pollution SPF to protect your skin from UV damage, and a night repair cream to nourish your skin’s healing power while you sleep. Proven strives to turn skincare into a two-way conversation and to be a part of one’s journey to healthier, better skin.

Modiface Skin AI

Modiface Skin AI uses AI technology to not only detect and measure the state of your skin, including any changes in your skin’s condition, but also to visualize the before-and-after effects of using a certain beauty product. This live-video skin simulation technology specifically monitors for individual skin concerns such as dark spots, discolorations, dryness, and uneven skin. Then, it realistically simulates precise changes to the skin upon using potential skin care products. This is incredibly useful for those who are looking to try out new products, but are not entirely confident in its effectiveness. With Modiface Skin AI, you essentially have the capabilities of a skin expert right at your fingerprints, except for the fact that it’s better than a skin expert because it uses machine learning technology.

With these resources on hand, we’re able to better understand our skin and its needs in order to retain its health and natural glow. By assessing and knowing what’s right for our skin, we’re able to create our own personalized skincare routine in a matter of a few minutes. It’s all about beauty for the individual, for you— what feels right, which problematic areas you want to focus on, what the right active ingredient is, what works best for your skin type, and most importantly, what makes you feel confident and empowered. Who knew that the beauty and cosmetics industry would be one of the most prominent industries to be affected by the digital wave? Technology increasingly provides significant value in this realm. The process of finding the right products that consistently work well for you can be depleting and often ineffective. Thanks to technology, it eliminates the most costly and time-consuming component of skincare, which is trial and error. Now, we have the ability to use technology to consult, virtually try on various products, and empower consumers to create their own beauty experiences. Brace yourselves, because there’s a lot more in store for you.

Stay beautechful!

11 comments

  1. I LOVE this! Skin care is the most important routine one must have to combat aging and long-term health. I pride myself on my nightly routine and always make sure I get a facial at least once every 2 months for rejuvenation and hydration! However, I had no idea of these digital apps to access the health of your skin. I solely have relied on spas, skin care lines like Kiehls or Clinique to make sure my skin is getting the best care it can. Hopefully, there will be more marketing for these health products as I have yet to hear about them! Thanks for sharing.

  2. One of my main problems with skin care is having to sift through so many products to find ones that work for me personally. I often find that products cause me to break out more than when I’m doing a routine of only water and maybe some micellear water. Your blog really opened my eyes and I had no idea there were this many programs to test your skin personally to cater to bringing you your best skin. The one problem I have with the Neutrogena app is that it only offers Neutrogena products which may alienate some consumers. If you’re not a fan of their products, have sensitivity to them or cannot purchase them for affordability reasons it keeps users at a standstill. Definitely need more Jonathan in my life, great blog!

    1. I had the exact same thought! While this technology is really amazing and gives people a different, tech-based, perspective on health care, there are thousands of products that work for so many different skin types. I’m not surprised Neutrogena entered this space first (being an established player in the market) but I bet this will open the door for other players to enter as well who are not tied to a particular brand or retailer. I’m really excited to see where this tech goes in the future!

  3. Really great, interesting topic. I’ve spent WAY too much time at the dermatologist in my life, and its interesting to see apps moving into that space. I’m curious how “reliable” they are, or if they just make generic recommendations to sell products.

  4. THANK YOU. My skin is arguably the biggest pain point in my life, so I really appreciated this post. I had absolutely no idea that any of these technologies existed. When I first read the title of this post, I honestly thought that it was going to be about apps like FaceTune and Photoshop that people use to make their skin look better before posting photos to social media. I am so glad I was wrong. To me, the most intriguing breakthrough that you mentioned is Neutrogena 360. I have both used and appreciated many Neutrogena products in the past, however I still get overwhelmed every time I head to the skincare aisle in CVS, as I always wonder if I could be using something better. I am not quite sure whether I would choose to invest in the technology at this very point in time, but it is quite relieving to know that it is out there, and more advancements like it are surely to come.

  5. I love that you can adapt technology to anything. I started reading your post and I was like this is great, but what does skin care have to do with technology? Then, boom, you hit me with some facts! I think personalization in healthcare, yes your skin care counts as healthcare is key. We are all unique individuals who require different things. I personally have very sensitive skin. I love that companies are working to make sure that there are products in the market that fit me. Great post!

  6. Wow – I had no idea tech was revolutionizing skincare like this! I would have assumed the major tech-enabled technologies relating to skincare would be mostly in-office medical devices, but it’s so cool that tech is allowing people to take better care of their skin from the comfort of their homes. It makes sense that skin was a natural early health and wellness target for tech, since a lot can be determined just by looking at it, which can be done with nothing but a camera. I wonder if there are other areas of healthcare that this is true for, although it might get a little gross to have people taking pictures of all their visible problems to have AI diagnose them. Regardless, I definitely see this is part of the partnership of technology and healthcare that we have discussed many times in class and in blogs.

  7. I’m all about this post! Over the past few years I’ve found myself paying more and more attention to skincare and what products are right for me, but there’s SO MANY that exist that it can be really hard to even begin to figure it out. For the time being, I’ve stuck with recommendations from my dermatologist on products that I should try out based on my skin, but I’m definitely interested in trying out the technologies you mentioned when something with my skin inevitably changes and a new product is needed. One piece of technology that I currently use and love is the Luna fofo by FOREO. It’s an electronic cleansing brush that you can use with whichever face cleanser you choose, but the best part about it are two sensors that exist on the backside of it. You can use the sensors to analyze the hydration levels of your face and the results are uploaded straight to an app on your phone. The analysis then helps the cleansing brush to figure out how long you should spend cleaning each zone of your face before briefly pausing to let you know when to move on to the next one. This is something that I wouldn’t normally spend my money on, but it’s proven to be well worth it, plus it’s really interesting to see that changes it detects, especially from season to season.

  8. Really cool stuff, these are products and services that I never really knew existed, potentially because they seem to be marketed more towards women. I agree that skin care is an essential part of both men and women’s daily routines, but with the greater number of products women seem to use these technologies are more well positioned in that market. These are really cool applications of AI and macine learning that I would imagine takes away a lot of the waste you may have to go through to find the skin-care products that are right for you. Dermatologists are expensive and these seem like a really good option to make healthy skincare more accessible to more people.

  9. Its really great to see technology paving ways to keep us out of the doctors, or dermatologist office and out doing what we love to do. Skincare is the most overlooked part of my daily routine and I frequently forget best practices and continue with the status quo. While I might fall outside of the target market for these apps and brands, I am certainly interested to see how technology like this will help all of us stay happier and healthier as we age.

  10. Skincare is a fascinating area to see technology. I initially thought about how this could help those who are prone to having freckles or moles, as they are more likely to develop skin cancer. A large part of preventing skin cancer is catching moles early. Modface Skin AI seems like the perfect solution, rather than going to the dermatologist every couple of months. I think this is a definitely positive step for healthcare and maybe could be incorporated into a diagnostic test or maybe medical device. I also love the more cosmetic applications that help you choose products that match your skin’s needs.

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