Daily Insights

Can L’Oréal Lure Beauty Buyers at Home?

By: Mackenzie Baker | Dec 01, 2020

In its latest effort to appeal to at-home beauty buyers, L’Oréal introduces “virtual makeup” selfie filters that allow users to wear its products without physically putting on any makeup. 

L’Oréal’s new selfie filters are compatible with Snapchat, Instagram, Zoom and Google Duo, to give consumers plenty of options for where to “wear” makeup. The filters are similar to those rolled out by competitors like Charlotte Tilbury and NARS in which beauty products are overlaid on a smartphone users’ face. L’Oréal is promoting the filters as fit for video calls in particular, allowing the brand to tap into the virtual trend that has risen in popularity during the Coronavirus pandemic. As more employees work from home and families maintain connections via video, the filter’s launch could arrive at a prime time for engagement and help L’Oréal sustain its surge in online sales, according to a Gartner report

There are three different “collections” of filters: Volumizing Capsules, Plump Shot, and Fire Match. Each filter enhances a different part of a user’s face and features products available for purchase either online or in store. By promoting new products through filters, L’Oréal could help drive sales from consumers looking to physically purchase products they “try on”. While users can access the filters from any of the compatible mobile apps, L’Oréal also created a microsite explaining each filter and linking to the apps for easy access. By tying its digital presence to its social media partners, L’Oréal could liven up its virtual influence and further maintain relevance with consumers. 

The launch of virtual makeup filters follows L’Oréal’s purchase of AR filter company Modiface in 2018. Since the purchase, L’Oréal has strategized its virtual offerings to fit consumer demand for digital try-on capabilities. With more consumers at home now more than ever before, the selfie filters could appeal to a wide audience of beauty enthusiasts whose preferences could help the company further fine tune its filters. L’Oréal could also tap into an already established audience, as the selfie filters are its second endeavor into virtual makeup, having launched a series of beauty lenses for Mac and Windows devices earlier this year. While those lenses were fit for desktop devices, L’Oréal‘s new filters are compatible on mobile devices, which could increase usage as 45% of beauty buyers prefer shopping via smartphone. 

With its virtual makeup selfie filters, L’Oréal embraces a growing trend within the beauty industry for AR marketing. By making the filters accessible to users across platforms, the brand primes itself for engagement and sets the stage for future filtered features that could help it stand out amongst cosmetic competitors.