Print Your Own Make-up: 5 Reasons The Viral Trend is Here to Stay

Written by Esen Tolgan

Every now and then, a new product or service will cross your path that makes you think “Wow, we really are living in the future!”. We might not yet have the flying cars The Jetsons predicted, or even the camera-ready “Morning Mask” Jane Jetson puts on to video chat with her friend, but thanks to beautifully designed smart devices, you can now 3D print your own custom make up, and that’s close enough.

Picture of Jane Jetson

With beauty tech taking the globe by storm, make-up has also entered the world of tech-influenced products. The most recent product to go viral on TikTok was the Rouge Sur Mesure Custom Lip Color Creator by YSL, which uses AI technology to create your desired, personalised shade of lipstick. The product is powered by Perso, which at the time of its launch, claimed to be “The World’s First AI-Powered Device For Skincare And Cosmetics”. Similar products on the market have focused on blemish concealment and foundation application, such as the Procter & Gamble Opte handheld inkjet makeup printer that was 14-years in the making, prior to its launch, or Mink, the portable printer created by a female founder, that you can use to select an image from the internet and have the exact color printed onto a make up sheet in your hands, within 15-seconds. 


Woman looking at her phone and the App display 

So, enthusiasm for futuristic, luxury goods and viral trends aside, let’s take a look at the logical reasons why 3D printing will likely be around for quite a while.


Two white plastic bottles with orange and yellow background 

1. Sustainability

While the products themselves do not make any claims to be, nor are they marketed as, very eco-friendly, 3D printing your own make-up is a much more sustainable consumption model to its counterparts, which would be to consistently buy every shade of lipstick, eyeshadow or foundation separately - contributing to the use and disposal of non-recyclable packaging as well as the eco-price of continual logistics to have those products brought to your doorstep. Technically, 3D printing would minimize your product to packaging ratio, and we can all get behind that one. With the eco-friendly movement being stronger than ever, this could be the perfect tech solution to many environmentally conscious consumers. 

 YSL custom makeup

2. Time and Cost Effective 

Can you imagine not having to go through an hour-long process of getting ready in the morning or before a night out, and that a machine could do it for you within seconds? Sounds like a dream to me. Combined with the fact that you get a whole range of products for a set - albeit above average - price, features such as AI powered foundation applications that provide perfect results each time, have the potential to develop into common practice in the future.


YSL custom makeup

3. It Knows More Than You

Artificial Intelligence is unsurprisingly, extremely intelligent. Almost every 3D make-up printing machine is powered by some form of AI and paired with a camera-sensitive app that can be downloaded onto your phone/tablet and connected with the printer. With the sophisticated technology the printers use, they can match your foundation shade better than you, conceal your blemishes more efficiently than you, and provide recommendations more suitable to your needs than your friends probably could. Online shade matching has already become incredibly popular in recent years, particularly over the pandemic, and has been used by many cosmetics companies, with Lancôme's in-store Le Teint Particulier taking it a step further and using the technique to build personalised custom foundations for consumers.

 YSL custom makeup unboxing

4. It’ll Get Your Creative Juices Flowing

Whether you’re usually artistic and enjoy DIY projects, or you just miss the fun and thrill of mixing up colors to create your own make-up as a child, products like YSL’s lipstick printer will have you beaming with joy at the idea of mixing wild colors to forge your perfect shade of lipstick - or the weirdest! No matter what the outcome is, tapping into your creative side is always a good time; and for this reason, these products have already generated enough excitement on social media to likely be considered for further exploration by competing companies.


YSL custom makeup

5. It’s Bound To Only Get Better

One thing we can count on is that technology is ever-improving. The beauty tech industry is conducting more research and development than ever to create tech for women and make-up enthusiasts in an age where appearance enhancing products are certain to generate profits - not to mention the futuristic aspects and other unique selling points that are included in the product category. Hence, we can count on the technology of 3D make-up printing  in the future to be improved and perfected, as well as become even more accessible than it currently is.

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