3-D printing has been around since the 1980’s but has only recently received hype from the world. This is because over the last couple years 3-D printing Technology has drastically improved. 3-D printing is any process in which a three dimensional object is constructed through an industrial robot that lays down successive layers. These layers
create the object with materials such as plastic, ceramic and metal.
In the last TechCrunch Disrupt, a technology conference which
new technology is displayed, a 3-D make-up printer called Mink debuted for the first time. Mink, invented by Grace Choi, uses inkjet printing with cosmetic grade ink substrate to create lipstick, lip gloss, eye shadow, blush, nail polish and brow powder. By using any imaging software (Ex. Windows paint) , Mink can print any of the products listed previously in their desired colour. The target audience for this invention is young adults from the age 13 to 21. It will also be affordable ranging from 100-300USD. This invention essentially lets you have whatever you want whenever you want it.
Grace Choi believes consumers in the make-up industry are not loyal to the brands; instead they purchase what is convenient. All makeup essentially uses the same substrate (base) and only differ in colour. Therefore consumers only buy makeup depending on the appearance of the object. Makeup companies only release certain colours every season which they believe are fashionable. In other words, colours considered unfashionable are never created. The Mink makeup printer will empower women because through the printer, they can create any colour that is not produced. This will allow women to experiment at a cheap cost, while giving the user confidence. Ultimately this confidence will help sprout the women leaders of the future.
However, the Mink printer is not developed enough to create complex finishes such as – duochrome, matte, satin, frost, glitter etc. This is because the formulas able to be created by Mink are very narrow at the moment. Also, it is still unknown how much the cartridges of substrate and ink will cost.
More or less, if the Mink printer becomes available to the general public, it will change the make-up industry forever. Grace believes the make-up industry will not be affected greatly because Mink only targets young adults. Older women, will probably not want to try Mink because they are already accustomed to their routines. Also Mink still allows make-up companies to be involved if they want to be. They
can create their own substrate or unique colours and be a part of the Mink movement.