When news first hit that Zoom had a beauty filter, many were delighted that a feature could give them a little virtual work-from-home glamour. But this was at the start of stay-at-home orders when most people, us included, thought they’d be working from home for only a few weeks. As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to grow and nonessential businesses remain to closed in much of the country, the last thing on most people’s minds is what they look like on video conference calls. So why should we be interested in a new beauty app feature now?
On April 29, L’Oréal Paris partnered with Snap Camera, a desktop application that allows users to try Snapchat lenses during conference calls, to create its own filters. Eight of the makeup and skin-care brands under the L’Oréal umbrella each have a branded lens. Users can pick between lenses curated by Maybelline New York The Falsies Lash Lift, Maybelline New York Super Stay Matte Ink, Lancôme Idôle, Garnier Fructis, L’Oréal Paris Disney, L’Oréal Paris Rouge Signature, L’Oréal Paris Revitalift, and L’Oréal Paris Colorista. This marks the first time a beauty company has collaborated with the Snap Inc. app.
The filters range from giving users glowing skin to having virtual butterflies flying around in the background. Users can wear digital enhancements, like a vampy red lip or electric-blue hair. It’s unnecessary, sure, but that isn’t really the point. The biggest takeaway is that this app is simply fun.
I gave my coworkers a heads up that I’ll be using the filters during our daily morning meeting before realizing just what these filters had in store for me. I opened each one and couldn’t help but laugh out loud (by myself in my New York City studio where I’ve been quarantined for almost two months) at the settings. As each of my colleagues logged on, I was greeted with laughs. There were butterflies fluttering across my screen as we talked about pitches, and I would switch between filters before settling on wearing sunglasses and a flower crown — my former Coachella-attending self would be proud.
For the first time in a long time, I smiled all day long after we logged off our morning meeting. When was the last time I’ve done something silly? Something that wasn’t for the sake of productivity or necessity? Even FaceTime and Zoom happy hours with friends and loved ones have a somber tone to it. We’re all trying to figure out how to move forward during such a difficult time, and if something gives me even a few minutes of joy, I’ll take it.
The Snap Camera app is completely free and just requires a simple download. Then, you go to the settings of whatever video conference app you plan on using and allow it to access your camera. You can play around with L’Oréal’s newest filters or explore the other ones that might also intrigue you.
So if it’s not too distracting, try it out. It’ll make you and your coworkers and friends smile, which is something we could all use more of these days.
Read more stories about virtual makeup:
Now watch a video on the evolution of French beauty: