July 10, 2019
Opening a new door for makeup brands to sell their products, YouTube has released a new update: AR Beauty Try-On.
This feature will be used in a split-screen experience while YouTube viewers watch a makeup tutorial. Pre-recorded tutorials will play like normal, while a second screen will stream from a user’s front-facing camera. It is on this second screen that beauty products referenced in the tutorial—lipsticks, eyeshadow, etc.— will be laid out in a palette of various colors. The user can select one they wish to see, and it will be displayed on their face through augmented reality (AR).
All of this is being developed with FameBit, Google’s branded content platform for influencers. The obvious idea being that YouTube influencers can work with brands to generate a new experience for users (and views for YouTube).
This is not the first time cosmetic brands have played with AR… Sephora has their Virtual Artist, Perfect Corp. has a whole line of AR apps for beauty enthusiasts, and Wannaby has AR apps for nails, jewelry, and shoes. Even Target has gotten in on the AR action. So, it’s no surprise that brands like MAC are already lining up to utilize YouTube’s AR Beauty Try-On.
What makes YouTube’s effort special? Well, if you’re in advertising, everything.
Marketers will be able to craft influencer campaigns designed around this technology. Where the above tools and products work well to highlight a particular brand, AR Beauty Try-On will leverage the growing popularity of influencer marketing to pinpoint specific users with certain brands for direct results, cementing both AR and influencers as some of the most powerful advertising tools around today.