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Researchers Developing 3D Printed Lipstick Applicator

The medical, manufacturing, and transportation industries have been turned on their heads by the advent of 3D printing.  But one $445 billion industry has proven to be a tough nut to crack – that of beauty.  Sure, there have been a few stunning 3D printed dresses, among other accoutrements – but nothing quite substantial enough to create a dent.

Now, however, as reported by Digital Trends, scientists at the U.K.’s Cosmetic Science Group at London College of Fashion have begun to scratch the surface of this elusive industry when it comes to additive manufacturing.

The researchers have developed a 3D printed lipstick applicator, utilizing one of 3D printing’s core strengths: personalization.  The researchers published their findings in the Journal of Dermatology and Cosmetology.  “The work involves both 3D scanning and 3D printing technology to produce a lipstick applicator which perfectly matches the lips of the wearer, meaning no more mirrors necessary” for application.

One of the lead researchers on the project, Dr. Milica Stevic, elaborates: “the first step involves obtaining a high-quality scan of an individual’s lips in order to get a digital image.  This image is then subjected to optimization and further modeling, which is a simple, straightforward, and universal procedure, regardless of the type of lips.  As a result of this, a three-element digital model is obtained: a lipstick base, mold, and cap.  [This is then] manufactured using a 3D printer.  A lipstick formulation is then poured in the mold and the lipstick base adjusted to the top.  The inner part of the mold has a unique shape perfectly matching the lip contours of the individual, so the final product obtained is a lipstick personalized to the individual’s lips.”

“With this personalized lipstick applicator, we have proved the concept, so now we are working on a more sophisticated model more likely to be commercialized.  Personalized cosmetic products are able to treat every consumer individually, and will give them the option to participate in the creation of the products they, personally, use.”

Image Courtesy of Getty Images and Digital Trends

Quotes Courtesy of Digital Trends

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