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There’s no doubt that beauty has stepped up its game in terms of innovation, with a plethora of scientific discoveries translating into advanced skincare saviours that are smarter than ever. We look at three ways the beauty game’s changing now.

Tailor-made functionality

At the heart of many of the beautysphere’s new developments is custom skincare. One major player taking the lead is Clinique with the launch of Clinique iD. The collection allows consumers to pick one of five active cartridges that click together with different formulas of moisturisers, delivering individual skin prescriptions with the perfect dosage. It’s a mix-and-match concept that’s begun to crop up all over the skincare arena, including over at the labs of Dr. Barbara Sturm, the woman behind the famous ‘vampire facial’ and ‘blood creams’. Sturm has offered up a total rethink of sun protection with her Sun Drops, which can pretty much turn any other product in one’s beauty arsenal into a skin-protecting shield. More than just a novel way to say sun-safe, by separating out the active UV filters and active skincare ingredients, it’s an innovation that strengthens the potency of both products.

New delivery methods

Preserving and maximising potency is a big thing on beauty brands’ agendas, in response to savvy consumers that want to get every drop of effectiveness from their products. Niche and mainstream players are delivering on an influx of ampoules: supercharged serums with a finite lifespan and higher concentrations of active ingredients. These ‘skin shots’ are packaged in sets of airtight single-use vials that preserve the ingredients’ potency. 3LAB, 111SKIN and Clinique all offer their own versions, with benefits that vary from anti-ageing to brightening. Skincare cult classics have also been updated with innovative new methods of delivery in recent years. Case in point: La Mer’s Moisturizing Soft Lotion. While the formula’s staples are the brand’s famed Miracle Broth (a fermented mix including sea kelp, vitamins, minerals and citrus oil) and Lime Tea Extract (a solution of lime rinds and alcohol), the vessel is much more advanced: a gel capsule that’s designed to be so incredibly tiny that it can penetrate at a much deeper level, ensuring maximum results of the formula inside.

On-the-go gadgets

New beauty innovations are also coming into our homes, and with us on the go, in the form of high-tech tools. Beauty giant L’Oréal and cult French skincare brand La Roche-Posay have teamed up to create a My Skin Track UV device. The world’s first battery-free wearable electronic gadget to measure UV Exposure, the invention keeps users informed about the amount of UV rays, pollution and other enemies of skin they receive in real-time, prompting them to slather on more skincare. LED light technology tools are also cropping up everywhere — offering the effects of professional facials by working with a daily skincare routine, the gadgets speed up the body’s ability to heal and produce collagen, and boost its effectiveness. Exidéal’s mini version is ideal for travel, and is equipped with four kinds of LEDs using different wavelengths to effectively target different skin issues including aged, dull and dehydrated skin.