Does L’Oréal’s presence at VivaTech mean that beauty and technological innovation are now inseparable?

Camille Kroely - Technological innovation is the ally of tomorrow’s beauty. At L’Oréal, we believe that innovation is at the intersection of science and technology, and that’s exactly what we’re presenting at VivaTech. Innovation is at the heart of our DNA... At the beginning with science, and today by bringing science and technology together to offer an augmented beauty.

How can technology shape the future of beauty?

Camille Kroely - Today’s technologies allow us to meet consumers’ needs at the click of a button. Throughout their beauty journey, our customers have access to services that provide them with precision, such as virtual makeup testing via artificial intelligence, as well as customized advice, such as Lancôme’s Shade Finder, which helps them find the right shade of foundation, or personalized skin diagnostics in store with Skin Screen and at home with E-youth Finder. These innovations allow customers to find their own tailored beauty routine with an unprecedented degree of precision. Technology offers unlimited possibilities for personalization.

Among the innovations showcased at VivaTech is Yves Saint Laurent Beauty’s "Scent-Sation" which lets users find the fragrance that best expresses their emotions. Has personalization become essential to winning over consumers?

Camille Kroely - Scent-Sation is a unique immersive experience that, through a connected headset, can evaluate consumers’ emotional responses to different families of scents in order to help them find the perfect fragrance. The need for personalization has always existed, and technology offers consumers a customized response, with unprecedented level of precision.

The group’s brands are also making their first forays into the metaverse with NFTs and immersive experiences. Is this an inevitable next step?

Camille Kroely - At L’Oréal, the metaverse is a unique field of exploration and innovation for fostering engagement with a new generation of consumers. The beauty of the future will be physical, digital and virtual. We are therefore approaching it with a ’test and learn’ approach to identify possibilities to enrich the consumer journey, which is constantly evolving, moving from an ’Online to Offline’ approach to an ’Online to Offline to On-Chain’ approach.

What possibilities could the metaverse hold for the group’s luxury and consumer brands?

Camille Kroely - The metaverse offers many opportunities. Among them is the possibility to engage communities and promote diversity. For example, the NYX Professional Makeup brand is supporting the next generation of artists by launching the first 3D beauty designers label to shape the beauty codes of tomorrow. As part of this launch, NYX partnered with People of Crypto Lab (POC) on The Sandbox platform and made available 8,430 NFT avatars representing diversity in all its forms. For its part, Yves Saint-Laurent launched 10,000 NFTs to unlock unique and personalized experiences and services in the YSL Beauty ecosystem.

With SkinCeuticals Pro 1:1, L’Oréal offers personalized — and free — skin diagnostics to build a customized routine. Is the future of skincare also virtual?

Camille Kroely - Knowing your skin’s needs and the most appropriate product routine is a very strong demand that has always existed. Today, thanks to new technologies, we allow consumers to access a certain level of advice and recommendations at the click of a button, wherever they are. At L’Oréal, we’re seeing an exponential demand for skincare that’s growing rapidly today. We must respond by combining beauty products and services to offer consumers the best possible experience.

Will all these technological innovations also be deployed in physical stores?

Camille Kroely - That’s the strength of what we’re presenting today: a fluid beauty journey that offers the best of our recommendations and diagnostics through in-store devices. Lancôme is using artificial intelligence to offer Skin Screen, an advanced skin analysis service, provided free of charge in-store by a brand beauty consultant. The service uses an innovative device that takes pictures of the face using tripolar light technology to provide the best high-resolution analysis. Skin Screen uses artificial intelligence to compare images with our Skin Aging Atlas database of more than 15,000 images, and pools more than 20 years of data and expertise in clinical trial evaluations to analyze 13 skin health parameters, including hydration, texture, UV damage and dark circles.

Is technology also being used to support a more environmentally responsible approach to beauty?

Camille Kroely - At L’Oréal, we have identified many revolutionary technologies for making beauty more environmentally responsible. The L’Oréal Water Saver offers a hair-washing experience that reduces water consumption by 61% compared to standard methods; this will represent billions of liters of water each year. Virtual makeup testing is also proving to be very effective for preserving the environment. When a consumer uses it, we see up to -17% in the return rates of our products because the customer was able to try them beforehand; which also allows us to reduce our carbon footprint.

What beauty will look like at L’Oréal in 10 years’ time?

Camille Kroely - In 10 years, beauty at L’Oréal will be ever more responsible, more inclusive, and at the intersection of science and technology.