Marketed under Hallstar's new Beautivision brand, the patented SmartEye camera and app will be initially launched in China, with a broader geographical introduction planned over the next 12 months.
Chairman and CEO John Paro has strongly advocated for applying the Hallstar Beauty R&D team's chemistry knowledge to developing this new platform.
"Beautivision is a direct response to several key consumer trends," Paro explained. "First, we know users are looking for custom solutions for their unique skin. They increasingly want a transparent, self-directed shopping experience when it comes to beauty care. At the same time, global investment in 5G infrastructure and devices is paving the way for a broadly connected, 'no-lag' future. And the continuing rise of mobile commerce and all-in-one 'super-apps' is changing the way consumers interact with brands. Nowhere is this truer than in mobile-centric China."
Chinese consumers account for 1.4 billion mobile internet subscriptions as of 2018—more than three times those in the US, the next largest market. Throughout Asia Pacific, consumers are already using their mobile phones within larger lifestyle choices, and they take a pragmatic approach to time spent on these platforms. Companies like Hallstar know they must be mindful of the role that social plays in the life of connected consumers in Asia Pacific compared to consumers elsewhere (Michelle Evans, "Digitalisation in Asia: How One Region is Shaping Worldwide Trends," Euromonitor International, April 2019).
Although Hallstar's Beauty division has a broad and varied product portfolio including active naturals, functional ingredients and performant butters, the Beautivision launch will focus first on sunscreen efficacy. "Hallstar has long been a thought leader in sun care," says Robert Hu, president, Hallstar Beauty. "Our sun care product development, centered around photostabilization concepts, emphasizes the need for all-day, every-day protection. Consumers are looking for convenience, customization and clear, credible information that help make photoprotection part of their daily routine."
Images taken with the camera and interpreted through the app will show what can't be observed with the human eye alone. By taking a facial photo with the UV-sensitive SmartEye camera and loading the image onto their Beautivision mobile app account, users will see the degree to which applied sunscreen is protecting their skin against harmful UV rays and if real-time adjustments are necessary. They can also analyze their unprotected skin through the device's special lens and, using Beautivision app functionality, evaluate signs of aging and sun damage over time. The ability to quantify effectiveness of a selected beauty regimen encourages users to proactively design a personalized skin care routine.
Hallstar's extensive expertise in photochemistry and photoprotection will power the Beautivision platform's future evolution. Hallstar is investing in hardware, software and indicator chemistry so that the next generation of SmartEye cameras will be equipped with even greater magnifying ability, enabling observation of more intimate interactions between applied beauty products and users' skin. The addition of Hallstar's sensitive indicator chemistry to almost any type of beauty product will allow their impact on users' skin to become visible under the SmartEye device.
Beautivision's official launch event will take place on Aug. 30, 2019, in Suzhou, China, near Hallstar Beauty's Asia-Pacific office and laboratory. The SmartEye camera will be sold on www.mybeautivision.com and will retail for under $100 U.S. The Beautivision mobile app will be downloadable from the website as well as Google's Play Store and Apple's App Store.