New technology is giving the 80-billion dollar beauty industry a massive makeover. At its foundation, a slew of Silicon Valley startups have raked in more than 70-recent rounds of funding, to the tune of 1.7 billion dollars, according to CG Insights.
At the center of it all - artificial intelligence, augmented reality, and the promise of a bit of gadget-magic.
MIRROR, MIRROR ON THE WALL - HiMirror Plus, $369
Smart mirrors are a thing now - I've reviewed five of them in the last year alone. Most are Wi-Fi and bluetooth enabled, but the HiMirror Plus has the potential to be high-tech belle of the ball:
HiMirror uses a skin-scanning facial recognition camera to analyze your skin for wrinkles, dark circles, red spots, and other potential issues. Then, it offers-up a beauty regime and products to tackle any problem areas. It also tracks over time, so you can find out if your skin care routine is actually working. My favorite part of its many features though, is the magnifier and the makeup lights, which you can set based on environment (i.e. sunset, dinner party, office). This Wi-Fi smart mirror can literally change the way you look at yourself.
LOOKS CAN BE DECEIVING - iDerma Youth Restoring Mask, $349
This looks really strange, like a Jason mask from Friday the 13th, but apparently, you just strap this full-face mask on for eight-minutes, three times a week, for 12-weeks - and all kinds of magical things happen. It uses low-level red LED light therapy to boost collagen, reduce fine lines, and improve visible signs of aging. This kind of red light treatment's been used in spas for years as to stimulate healing, which can help treat acne scars, age spots, and even reduce pore size. I haven't used it for the recommended time yet, but it's been super fun to scare to my family! It's available for presale now at a discount and is expected to ship in September.
MINI LIGHTSABER TO ZAP ZITS - Foreo Espada, $149
Here's another gadget that uses LED light therapy - but it uses blue light specifically to fight breakouts and blemishes. It's like a little mini lightsaber to zap zits. The way it works is simple: Just press it up against clean skin anywhere you feel a pimple coming on. After 30 seconds, the treatment is done and the device automatically shuts itself off. You can repeat it up to four times on a single spot for particularly bad blemishes, or move on to the next spot start over. The Foreo Espada is FDA approved, with clinical studies that say people can see results in as little as one treatment.
RAZORING THE BAR - Sphynx Portable Razor $14.99
This discreet, 3-in-1 portable razor is my new favorite thing. It literally lets you shave on the go. The Sphynx includes soap, two blades and a refillable water container with a spray nozzle, all tucked away inside a round plastic device not much bigger than a makeup compact. Miss a spot on your legs? No problem. Need to clean-up your bikini area before you hit the beach? Its got you covered. Just open it up, spray a little water on, roll on a little of the shea-butter based moisturizer, and shave away. It's seriously genius.
TRY BEFORE YOU BUY - GlamScout iOS App, Free
This free iOS app finds the makeup from a photo, then uses Augmented Reality (AR) to show you what it would look like on you - and connects you to each product so that you can buy it right then and there. You can choose from popular photos within the app, upload your own picture, or just hold your phone in front of a picture in a magazine. GlamScout tells you the name and exact shade of products including lipstick, eye-shadow, foundation, and even what brand you're looking for. Don't want to fork over a fortune for high-end beauty products? The app even shows you how to get the look for less $$. Then just snap a selfie to see how the make-up looks on your own face too.
Jennifer Jolly is an Emmy-award winning the Tech+Life Host for TheStreet, and the Editor-in-Chief of Techish.com.
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