You’d dab a little highlighter from a tester pot or tube on your face, or rub some eye shadow on your eyelids, before checking them out in the mirror. But with the pandemic shuttering High Street shops over the past year, a growing number of beauty fans have been flocking to digital testing apps and websites, to see whether a particular blusher or colour of lipstick suits them. You typically pick the product you want to try out, look into your selfie camera, and it appears, digitally, on your face on the camera screen.
Amy Kean, a 38-year-old from Margate in Kent, says that, from her experience as a consumer, the technology, a form of augmented reality (AR), has greatly improved in recent years. “It used to be very gimmicky… but now it is actually useful,” says the business consultant. “Previously it was often a leap of faith when buying makeup online. For instance, it could be really difficult to find the right shade of foundation, but with one brand recently, I was able to test, virtually, what it looked like on half my face compared to without on the other side.”
Ms Kean, who has also been playing around with hair dye filters on Instagram, says she will continue trying on products via AR, and then buying them, from a number of brands.