LONDON — Rimmel has developed a “Get the Look” app with which users can try on makeup looks from the streets and magazines. The app launches in the U.K. on July 1, followed by the U.S. in September.
The digital technology behind the app was designed by social media agency Holition, which was recently acquired by Coty last October. The digital app assesses the image and utilizes Rimmel’s beauty database to match the makeup shade. The U.K. will be the first market to launch the app worldwide, with other countries to follow. The brand notes that it has plans to launch the app with a retail partner in the future.
Users can take a picture of a look, and when uploaded to the app, it acts as a personalized augmented-reality mirror, which allows the user to virtually try a look using color-matched cosmetics by Rimmel, with an option to buy.
“This is a 3-D augmented-reality mirror technology that identifies and tracks perfectly the color, shape of the lips and the texture,” said Montserrat Passolas, Rimmel global marketing vice president. “Three incredible things that are very important for accuracy in makeup. This is a patent pending. You snap, then you can try it yourself, and then you can buy it. This generation in the 15-to-25 range learn from each other, and that is good for us. They want to reproduce what they’ve seen on Cara [Delevingne] or Kate [Moss], and they want to do it, and they experiment.”
The idea was born from insight, according to Passolas. “The fact is that women today are looking for more inspiration from people including friends, bloggers or a mother and sister,” said Passolas. “It is quite experimental, so we wanted to bring something that feels authentic to them. It’s not like before, when we used to go to someone’s house and get ready before the party and you try your makeup. Now you do it in your house and digital is at the center of the preparation of how you do your makeup. Before you have makeup artists, and it’s different now. It’s about digital tutorials.”
Millennials were a target market for the beauty brand. “So what we know is that our core target [is] 15 to 25. They really take inspiration from peers, from friends, vloggers, magazines,” added Passolas. “We know that 66 percent of women prefer, or buy, a product because they have been influenced by a friend or a vlogger, more than from the brand. We acknowledge that, and we wanted to be at the core of that. It’s an insight that this technology has been born from.”
Coty announced the acquisition of Beamly last October, and according to Camillo Pane, Coty executive vice president global category development, the company will add more brands to its roster this October. The company bought 43 beauty brands from Procter & Gamble, for $12.5 billion, last year.
“We have made a clear statement by buying a digital agency,” Pane told WWD. “They are using and spending their time in so many different types of media, and we just need to think ahead.…We are going to be focusing and thinking a lot about what technology — but also what other ways we could connect with our consumers. Consumer connection is the most beautiful thing a brand should master, right?”
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“So we will have Cover Girl and Max Factor coming,” Pane added. “We have Rimmel, we have Bourjois, we have Sally Hansen in color cosmetics. We have Astor in Germany and other countries. Max Factor is a big brand in the U.K., as you know, and Cover Girl is a big brand in the U.S. And we always look at how to use winning technology in consumer areas across our portfolio.” While Pane couldn’t confirm that these brands will receive a similar digital treatment, he noted that they will “always look at what’s best for the consumer.”
Last week, the brand delved into other digital initiatives, including Snapchatting with Kate Moss. “It was very successful,” said Passolas. “We had around [an] 8.7 million reach with her. You know she’s very intimate, yet she agreed to participate in our Snapchat. Snapchat is a record of our social media platforms because we have knowledge that generation Z participates on a daily basis with that. So we have a global Snapchat that we open and close when we have something extraordinary to communicate to consumers live from London. That is key for us, to be authentic. And Kate was supercute, and she was ready to participate. So Snapchat is a powerful tool for us to keep always refreshing.”
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