Four beauty gadgets to prettify your day
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My housemate Emma is dressed for work in her usual all-black ensemble but, according to an elegant flask-shaped gadget and its accompanying smartphone app, she’s missing some lippy. And it has just the shade to recommend to complement her funereal attire and porcelain complexion: burnt umber. The app uses augmented reality to show Emma how the lipstick will look on her mouth and, after she presses a button on her phone, the gadget starts whirring. It spurts out three spirals of different-coloured liquid and, like a painter, Emma mixes them with a brush before daubing the blend onto her pout. Burnt umber is a winner. “Voilà!” exclaims the app.
Such is the technology of Yves Saint Laurent Rouge Sur Mesure Powered by Perso, a brand-new connected device that enables you to create your own liquid lipstick shade – and that hints at a compelling future for personalised beauty products. (Really its only drawback is a rather clunky name.) Created by L’Oréal, the parent company of YSL Beauty, it’s a sleek object befitting a luxury brand, with gold accents, a lip brush that snaps magnetically onto its side, and a leather-embellished compact that affixes on top – and can be taken on the go.
It’s also intelligent. You inject three cartridges of YSL’s velvet cream matte lipstick into the machine and it works out how much of each is needed to create the desired hue. Although the cartridges must stay grouped in colour families (reds, oranges, pinks and nudes), the brand says the device can conjure up “thousands” of shades. It is a masterful example of mass customisation.
L’Oréal plans to launch corresponding devices for foundation and skincare. For the latter, the app will analyse a user’s photo to detect things such as fine lines, dark spots or pore visibility, factor in environmental concerns based on their location and suggest formulas. When you consider the number of serums, balms and polishes we dab on our faces, bodies and nails, the opportunities for application seem limitless.
Yves Saint Laurent Rouge Sur Mesure Powered by Perso £250, yslbeauty.com
A perfect respray
It’s no coincidence that waving this wand to coat your body in a mist of lotion resembles the process of dousing a car’s chassis in paint. Wagner, the German behemoth behind industrial spraying technologies for coating cars, floorboards and much more besides, is turning its expertise to a more delicate surface: skin. The first release from its new beauty brand, Ioniq, is a wireless sprayer resembling a chunky marching-band baton. After screwing a can of moisturising serum, sunscreen or tanning lotion onto the device, you hold it 20cm from your body, and move it across your frame. Via a trio of spouts, it claims to emit negatively charged droplets that are attracted to your skin’s positively charged particles. As well as giving an even application, it enables you to access tough-to-reach parts of your body like the lower back – and your hands don’t get as sticky as when rubbing in cream manually. It could be your new favourite companion on beach trips and home-treatment days alike. Ioniq One, from £249.90, ioniqskin.com
Step on those crow’s feet
The TriPollar Stop x Rose facial rejuvenator enters a market inundated with gizmos promising to plump and smooth your visage. Its claimed USP is its ability to stimulate collagen production, which, says London cosmetic doctor Rabia Malik, can lead to the “reduced appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and the tightening of the skin”. The angular, futuristic-looking device is silent and easy to use: you apply a layer of gel before pressing its electrode-covered tip to your face or neck and moving it, in circular motions, for 15 minutes. It uses radio-frequency to focus heat deep into your skin so your face feels warm, but not uncomfortably so. The TriPollar Stop range, produced by Israeli firm Lumenis, is already big in China, yet this new Rose model adds a thermal mapping function which claims to keep your skin at an optimum temperature throughout. It won’t be for everyone: you can’t use it within three months of having Botox, or at all if you’ve had permanent fillers. And for best results, it says, you need to use it two to three times a week for six to eight weeks, so some persistence is required if you hope to see off those crow’s feet. TriPollar Stop x Rose, £399, lookfantastic.com and mytripollar.com
Had it launched a year ago, Babyliss’s Super-X Metal Series would have been used to execute many a DIY buzzcut. But now we can have haircuts again, the question is what this new range of cordless groomers can do for your facial and, ahem, body hair. There are two separately sold gadgets, a clipper and a trimmer, each of which comes with a suite of attachments. The clipper, a bigger device that can cut to lengths of 0.8mm-25mm, is more for those who want to tend to manes and beards. The trimmer, whose range spans 0.2mm-16mm, is great for finessing stubble and other facial and body fuzz: it comes with interchangeable heads for smoothing edges and tidying nose, eyebrow, ear and body hairs.
Both of the French brand’s devices feel sturdy and premium, with Japanese-steel blades and a handsome slate body that’s enhanced by a cobalt-blue light while the machine’s in motion. The heads attach via magnetic force, so they fit into place with a satisfying snap. Shaving’s a dull chore but the gentle hum and pleasing heft of these electric razors makes it more than bearable. Super-X Metal Series cordless hair clipper and 15-in-1 multi-trimmer, £120 each, babyliss.co.uk