The beauty industry is big business, but a canny inventor is hoping to give the average beauty product lover more affordable options with a 3D printer for makeup.
Young entrepreneur Grace Choi says that corporations are making a killing by charging a premium for a basic feature: colour. While budget or discount brands are forced by economies of scale to offer fewer shades, consumers who want more makeup options have to go to pricier retailers.
Choi decided to come up with her own 3D printer that's able to replicate any shade of makeup imaginable, right from the comfort of your own home. Costing under US$200 (S$250), meet the Mink.
Any shade can be yours
How Choi envisions her technology is this: simply go online, find any colour you want, send it to your Mink, and get any kind of makeup you fancy in that shade. Lipstick, blusher, foundation, powder, or cream, the Mink can do it all. No mention if mascara is included though, as the website only mentions "wearable colour cosmetics", but Choi says what's possible will depend on 'business decisions' as opposed to actual limitations.
The makeup produced is created from FDA-approved substrates, and Choi's demo at the Disrupt convention in New York showed how easily powder eyeshadow was created just by taking the shade from a YouTube video.
You can easily sample a shade from photographs, videos, or swatches. The Internet then becomes your online shopping store without actually having to shop for products, just the colour.
Choi states that makeup margins (as high as 38%) are the highest compared to all other products. Mink, as it doesn't have to actually produce the makeup, has much lower margins, which is great news for consumers.
Head on over to the Mink website and request an invite for when the printer eventually goes on sale, likely by the end of the year.