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YouTube’s AR ads will let you try on makeup virtually

19.06.19 Digital Marketing

By Hannah Gallop
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Many of us seek help from the beauty gurus of YouTube for their product reviews and honest opinions before making purchasing decisions. Brands have called upon these creators for a while in order to connect with audiences, but brands and creators will soon be able to make that experience even more personalised and useful for viewers with help from augmented reality.

Google has announced that they are introducing AR Beauty Try-On, which will allow viewers to virtually try on makeup while following along with YouTube creators for tips, product reviews and more.

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The tool creates a split screen – using the top half to play YouTube while the lower half uses the front-facing camera to capture users and AR filters to apply virtual makeup samples. With the help of machine learning, the tool works on a full range of skin tones.

Positioning this new feature as a way of getting more people’s attention compared to non-interactive video ads, Google has demoed the tool with several beauty brands. During these tests, the company found that 30 per cent of viewers activated the AR experience in the YouTube iOS app, and spent an average of 80 seconds trying on virtual lipstick.

Although the tool is still in alpha at the moment, AR Beauty Try-On is available through Google’s in-house branded content platform, FameBit.

Using this new format, makeup brands will be able to tap into YouTube’s vibrant creator community, deploy influencer campaigns to YouTube’s 2 billion monthly active users, and measure their results in real time.

MAC Cosmetics is the first brand to partner with FameBit to launch an AR Beauty Try-On campaign, but with the number of beauty influencers and brands regularly using YouTube, it will only be a matter of time before more brands sign up to be a partner.

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