The beauty industry is passing through cultural and technological shifts. The outbreak of COVID-19 had a devastating effect on various industries. That includes the cosmetics industry which was hit hard by the lockdown that resulted in store closures and a significant drop in demand for beauty products around the world. Consumers tend to select beauty products by trying on colors and testing scents.
On the other hand, COVID-19 accelerated the industry’s digital transformation. Even after the brick-and-mortar stores open, most of the consumers are afraid of taking the risk of visiting a physical store. For this reason, the beauty brands needed to come up with a proper solution to make online shopping more satisfying for the customers. Some of the beauty retailers were already aware of emerging technologies and started their digitalization journey before the pandemic. It appears that it was a wise decision for companies to invest in AR and AI technologies. These technologies will not only make online shopping easier but also enable customers to try products online and buy from the store without any hygiene concerns even after the pandemic.
A Renovation in the Beauty Industry
Even though the pandemic has had a negative impact on several industries, the cosmetics and beauty industry continues to grow. According to a worldwide cosmetics market analysis, the market is expected to produce $126.8 billion in revenue by 2027, up from $105.4 billion in 2019. An AR technology company, Pulpo AR, introduced a virtual try-on feature to the market before the pandemic. The virtual try-on solution allows customers to virtually try on many cosmetic products. Their partnership with Flormar which is one of the global leading cosmetics and beauty brands enhanced its existing online shopping experience with AR features and boosted the sales. In addition to testing cosmetic products, the collaboration with Flormar and PulpoAR made it possible to test nail polish virtually as the first web-based application in the world.
The try-on application is essential since it not only allows customers to try on products multiple times but is also more hygienic and free to use. Consequently, it eliminates both the requirement for businesses to open a store to sell their goods and the requirement for customers to visit the store. Early investors of augmented reality technologies appear to have benefited from the pandemic. When compared to the pre-pandemic period, beauty-product brands and retailers that established virtual try-on features have seen more than a 20% increase in online sales.
What is Next?
The rapid change in consumer buying habits reveals the need for the beauty industry to adopt an agile approach and taking the lessons learned from Covid-19 to the next phase. The introduction of cutting-edge technologies in the world of beauty, such as augmented reality and artificial intelligence, is expected to accelerate market expansion. The cosmetic industry’s innovative applications make the world of beauty more tailored and diverse. Without any doubt, AI and AR technologies are going to drive the beauty and cosmetics industry.