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EXCLUSIVE: Sally Hansen Unveils Snapchat Try-on Nail Lens

The at-home try-on feature comes in a time of growth for both the brand and the nail category.

Sally Hansen is making an appeal to younger consumers with a nail polish try-on lens on Snapchat.

Starting Wednesday, Snap will offer an augmented reality virtual try-on lens for Sally Hansen’s latest Miracle Gel color collection and topcoat. The new lens is powered by SnapML, unveiled in June at the Snap Partners Summit, which allows outside partners to develop their own lenses. The lens will be available in the Snap carousel, and Sally Hansen will feature the Snap Code on its web site for users to scan for access.

The lens will include Sally Hansen’s new Marine Metals collection of shades in its Miracle Gel line, which launched earlier this summer alongside a new topcoat.

The partnership comes after Sally has experienced growth in the nail category driven by younger consumers, even as the market broadly has seen major declines. “We saw Millennial and Generation Z consumers are the ones driving the increase in online spending — 33 percent of each increased online spending, versus 23 percent of previous generations,” said Kevin Shapiro, senior vice president of marketing, consumer beauty at Coty Inc., Sally Hansen’s parent company. “Young consumers tend to gravitate toward the younger platforms, which includes Snapchat.”

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Sally Hansen has had a slew of wins lately, including triple-digit e-commerce growth and increasing up to 44.9 percent in market share, according to a spokesperson for the brand.

Snap’s technology — versus offerings from TikTok or Instagram Reels — made it the right partner for Sally, according to Shapiro. “It was because of this lens technology, specifically from SnapML, that we felt confident moving forward,” he said. “Because Snap Lenses is a pioneer in try-on technology, a lot of consumers associate Snapchat with some of the original filters and faces, and that transitioned into beauty products.”

Another piece of the appeal was the brand’s retention rates with new customers, who abandoned habitual salon visits at the onset of the coronavirus pandemic. “Even as some salons have opened up, we see consumers continue to use nail color at home,” Shapiro said. “It [the coronavirus] came upon the world, and a lot of people are still playing catch up. We also knew a lot of younger consumers are newer to beauty.”

The collaboration marks the first-ever sponsored virtual nail try-on for Snap in the U.S. market. “We know that Sally Hansen shares our hope of bringing joy and creativity to people at home, and nail art offers a way to embrace beauty and personal expression while staying safe in this challenging time,” Selby Drummond, head of fashion and beauty at Snap Inc., said in a statement.

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