Need New Look? Online Makeover is fan-taaz-tic

March 18, 2008
Need New Look? Online Makeover is fan-taaz-tic

Thanks to a Jacobs School startup company whose site, went live today, the cosmetics counter isn't the only place to try out the latest makeup trends. The new way is easier, faster, and much more private. Anyone with a digital photograph can now apply more than 4,000 makeup products with the click of a mouse. It's all at - the creation of two Jacobs School computer scientists turned entrepreneurs.

The computer scientists invented an algorithm for separating gloss from non-gloss in digital images - a technical feat crucial for's patented approach to applying photorealistic makeup to images. It is also useful for more traditional computer vision applications like face recognition. is easy and free. Simply upload a portrait-style photograph and a computer vision system automatically identifies your eyes, nose, lips and cheeks. From here, you can apply thousands of makeup products from a wide range of brands to your digital portrait and experiment with new hairstyles and colored contacts. After trying a prototype, one user went home and bought a new pair of colored contacts, says David Kriegman, a UCSD computer science professor and co-founder.

Once you create a new look, you can share it with friends, post the picture in's public gallery or upload it to social networking sites. To make shopping easier, you can print a list of what you tried on at

"With, we take something very complicated -- giving digital portraits a photorealistic makeover -- and make it very easy," says Satya Mallick, a co-founder with a fresh Ph.D. in electrical engineering from UCSD.

Mallick's dissertation focused on the gloss removal algorithm that led to

Kriegman, Mallick and third co-founder Kevin Barnes secured venture funding from iSherpa Capital in August 2007. They hired three recent UCSD grads. Kriegman credits the Jacobs School's von Liebig Center, UCSD's Technology Transfer and Intellectual Property Services, and CONNECT's Springboard program for helping the team develop and spin out their business, license the core technology, and secure venture capital.

Watch a two-minute demo of here:

Source: University of California, San Diego

Related Stories

Recommended for you

Privacy becomes a selling point at tech show

January 7, 2019

Apple is not among the exhibitors at the 2019 Consumer Electronics Show, but that didn't prevent the iPhone maker from sending a message to attendees on a large billboard.

China's Huawei unveils chip for global big data market

January 7, 2019

Huawei Technologies Ltd. showed off a new processor chip for data centers and cloud computing Monday, expanding into new and growing markets despite Western warnings the company might be a security risk.


Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.