On trial: Google Glass for Yves Saint Laurent Beauté make-up lesson

YSL-before-and-after-Google-Glass JPG

Last week, I donned my beauty editor hat to try out the new Google Glass makeup lesson service at YSL Beauté in Selfridges. The service launched earlier this year in the US and has worked its way to London, exclusively at Selfridges.

You book an appointment which costs £30 (redeemable against purchase). I had my appointment with the charming Fred Letailleur, YSL’s head of make up for northern Europe, who is not only an expert make-up artist, but is now a master Google Glass user. Which is a considerable combination that needs extreme focus. Not only does the make-up artist have to concentrate on what they’re doing to your face, but they’re also operating a tiny camera (embedded inside the ‘glasses’) with discreet movements, and engaging with the customer – answering questions, making you feel at ease etc.

At the end of your make-up appoitment, the video is emailed to you so that you can watch it back, re-learn the steps and buy the products. (There are links to all the products – this is after all a sales tool at the end of the day.) To save time, the video is limited to ten minutes overall. This means that the make-up artist will do half the makeup without filming, like a normal consultation, so this part is slightly more relaxed. After doing the first half, they do the same thing again, this time in ‘demo mode’, filming you live and keeping up their running commentary. For the makeup artist it’s maybe a little like being a vlogger!

Here’s Fred Letailleur in action!

It’s hard not to feel like you’re a model in a Youtube video, cos you kind of are. Fred was talking throughout the demo, explaining which products he used, what they did and how to get the best out of them. He went into detail describing application techniques and brushes (my current obsession) and despite all the hustle and bustle of the store environment (as you can see in the video), was extremely focused, making me feel the centre of attention.

I didn’t really ask any questions during the video as I had asked them during the first half and also I was aware of the ten minutes ticking away. I really liked how easygoing the experience was though. Even though a lot of products are used, there’s no hard sell. For example, talking about brushes, Fred described what he was using but also said, ‘just use what you have at home’. But when you watch the video back there’s a wealth of information there. (In my video I look a bit weird and I think it’s because I already have half a full face of make-up. Plus I’m trying to smize through my bitchy resting face…)

Overall, this is a pretty simple idea, executed very well. I was impressed. And it’s early days, I’m sure there’s huge potential for other educational beauty services that could be offered this way. My Yves Saint Laurent Beauté takeaways were as follows:

SERUM: gently apply it and then let it sink in, your skin will take what it needs, you don’t have to rub in every last drop

TOUCHE ECLAT: I usually apply this with fingers, but a flat foundation brush used with long movements will give more control to create a texture that’s not overdone

KISS & BLUSH: This cream-to-powder lip and cheek tint can double as a contour. First apply a small stroke to the cheek, then using the tip of a flat foundation brush, roll the brush and blend well to create a subtle, natural contour

The Yves Saint Lauent Beauté Google Glass make-up lesson is available at Selfridges, Oxford Street now – booking details HERE. I trialled the service as a guest of YSL.