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Pinterest Makes Bets On Augmented Reality

Pinterest should continue to benefit from online searches and interactions that previously took place in malls, with help from technology. 

Augmented reality has been around for years, but had little interest from brands and consumers. COVID-19 forced the movement as much of the world began shopping from home. With many brick-and-mortar stores either closed or offering limited hours, more brands have turned to AR. Features allow consumers to swipe through eyeshadows and lipsticks, but AR helps to match skin tones and more.

L’Oréal in 2014 launched Makeup Genius, a virtual makeup mirror that worked on smartphones. One report called it the first adoption of AR in beauty to really go mainstream.

Guive Balooch, global head of L’Oréal’s Technology Incubator, mentioned this product during a meeting at this year’s virtual CES, saying it kicked off many innovative products throughout the company such as the Yves Saint Laurent Rouge Sur Mesure Powered by Perso, a first-of-its kind at-home device for custom lipstick colors.

He told Fortune it had more than “20 million downloads in the first year and led to our team becoming quite visible, but it also started our movement toward A.I.-based digital services.”

Last week Pinterest introduced more ways to try on makeup from a phone. The augmented reality feature called AR Try on for eyeshadow caught the attention of Lancome, YSL, Urban Decay, and NYX Cosmetics. All are participating in the launch. 

The feature powered by Lens lets Pinners tap visual search and AR to try on and shop. Consumers click on the Lens camera to search and browse eyeshadow, trying on in-stock shades, and purchase through the retailer. Consumers can toggle between lip and eyeshadow looks. The virtual eyeshadow experience is now live across more than 4,000 shades. 

David’s Bridal, which launched 50 SKUs with Vertebrae, which provides 3D and AR commerce solutions, has seen success with AR and plans to add another 100 SKUs, including accessories, by May based on positive feedback from consumers.

Lizzy Ellingson, chief digital experience officer at David’s Bridal, saw 100% lift in conversions to make in-store appointments and a 30% lift in revenue.

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