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How Girls in Tech Can Revolutionize the Beauty Industry



Girl using virtual reality

Thanks to many STEM initiatives, there have been numerous programs developed to inspire and empower girls and young women to pursue careers in STEM. As this trend continues, we are seeing amazing innovations in the beauty industry that are arising from women combining their passion for beauty with their skills in science and technology. 


History is full of women who have propelled the beauty industry forward with their ingenuity, such as Estee Lauder, who used a rooted-in-science approach to designing cosmetics in the 1940s and 50s. Beauty has always been based on science, but today, women are taking the beauty industry to new heights with their advanced skills and technologies.


It’s important to bring this kind of information into the spotlight to show young girls that there is a place for them in STEM and that there is nothing wrong with having a passion for beauty products. The more we uplift young women and girls, the more they will be inspired to pursue an education in STEM, no matter what their interests might be.  


The Rise of Beauty Tech


Beauty tech, which is the integration of technology into beauty products and cosmetics, has been around for years. However, there has been a recent surge in beauty technologies thanks to some of the latest innovations like artificial intelligence (AI) and augmented reality (AR). 


Some of the latest technologies are transforming everything from skin analysis to laser treatments and even cellulite removal. Customer experiences in the beauty industry are also advancing with virtual and augmented reality applications, making it easier for them to “try on” products before they buy them.


According to market research, the current beauty tech market is valued at around $60 billion and is forecasted to reach $237 billion by 2030. This makes beauty tech an ideal path for young women looking to skyrocket their careers. 


Examples of How Women Are Revolutionizing the Beauty Industry


There are so many innovative technologies that we are seeing today, many of which are coming from women-owned and -founded companies that are revolutionizing the beauty industry. Below, we’ll take a closer look at some of these technologies, which can inspire young women to make their own contributions to beauty technology in the future. 


1. Extended Reality (XR)


XR, which is a type of extended reality immersive technology, is transforming several industries, including beauty and cosmetics. XR is essentially a new term that is being used to describe a range of technologies that are using augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) to create immersive and interactive experiences.


There are numerous ways the beauty industry is using XR to change the way consumers interact with beauty products and services. XR platforms enable customers to “try on” products and experiment with color for fun on social media apps. Or, XR can be used more functionally to allow customers to virtually try on products before they buy so they don’t end up returning something because they didn’t like how it looked on them. 


CEO and Founder, Alice Chang, created Perfect Corp, a company that is leading the beauty industry with its use of augmented reality solutions, such as those described above. The company’s mission is to democratize access to digital shopping experiences through the use of AI and AR-powered solutions. 


2. AI-Powered Personalization


Perfect Corp, along with other women-owned businesses like skinQ, also uses AI-powered technologies to take personalized beauty care to a whole new level. AI-assisted skin analysis can take information about a person’s skin, such as skin type, pigmentation, elasticity, and moisture levels, and then use that data to provide personalized beauty treatment or product recommendations. 


E-commerce companies are also using AI-powered virtual beauty advisors on their websites to enhance online shopping experiences. Using machine learning, these beauty bots can interact with customers, helping them find what they need and offer recommendations. 


3. Smart Mirrors


Another innovative beauty tech trend that has been gaining a lot of popularity recently is smart mirrors. These advanced mirrors utilize various features to provide personalized experiences, such as voice-enabled controls, smart lighting, cameras and sensors, skin analysis, and AR to superimpose products on the user’s reflection. 


4. Hair Analysis


Similar to skin analysis, there are also now smart hair analysis technologies that use AI to assess the quality of a person’s hair as well as the condition of their scalp. Using that data, the tool can then make personalized hair care recommendations, such as what hair care products to use or what kind of hair care routine they should be following. 


MYAVANA, a BIPOC women-owned and -founded hair care company, uses AI-powered hair assessment tools to help their customers learn what products work best for their personal needs. They also have a smart hair analysis kit that provides personalized hair care plans with expert guidance. 


5. 3D-Printed Makeup

For girls interested in creating their own personal makeup products, there are 3D printers that now allow users to transform their ideas into wearable makeup products. The technology works by depositing ink onto powder-coated substrates, resulting in a powder cosmetic product that is instantly wearable. 


Mink, for example, which was invented by Grace Choi, is the world’s first 3D makeup printer. The compact 3D printer can turn any image into wearable makeup, resulting in endless possibilities for creating custom cosmetic products. 


Wrapping Up: Jumpstart a Beauty Career in STEM


It’s never too early for girls to start planning so they can turn their passion for beauty and technology into successful future careers. The key is to find a focus so they can hone the specific skills they will need to jumpstart their STEM career, whether that’s pursuing more of a science focus or getting more into the technological side of the business. 


It’s also helpful to look into resources that could help them if they want to build their own startup one day, such as funding and mentorship. And, of course, studying beauty trends and playing with current beauty technologies can also help inspire them and give them new ideas to design their own products or services.  

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