Trying on one article of clothing after another can be a drag, even for those die-hard customers who love to shop ‘til they drop. It can be an especially daunting task for those who dread shopping altogether and pass up on great buys because they have to try something on. However, some department stores have jumped into the 21st Century to help solve this problem. A “Smart Mirror” allow shoppers to try on clothes ‘til their hearts’ content, save looks and compare outfits with a wave of the hand all without having to continually change outfits like Mariah Carey on tour.
Luxury department store Neiman Marcus rolled out their prototype, MemoryMirror (MemoMi), a couple years ago. The smart mirror combines a full-length mirror with 70-inch LCD, computer, and an HD camera that records eight-second videos so it can catch every angle if you so choose. And it’s very simple to use. MemoMi snaps a photo of you in one outfit and then lets you flip through how you would look in other colors and patterns. You can then save that photo and compare it side-by-side with other outfits to see which one catches your fancy.
The interactive dressing rooms automatically recognizes the items through RFID tags, which allows you to request a different style or color on the computerized mirror by pushing a button. The mirror images can be recorded in 360-degree views and can even be shared with friends via email or social media and in this day and age, if it isn’t posted on Facebook or Instagram, did it really even happen? This added share feature enables you to get a second (or third or even fourth) opinion from friends and family to help you make a decision whether or not the article of clothing you’re trying on is worthy of a purchase.
Retail implementation of this technology will no doubt be different for each retailer. “Over the last several months, our ilab worked directly with MemoMi to refine a final product unique to Neiman Marcus, and significant research was conducted to enhance our customer experience,” said Mimi Sterling, a spokesperson for Neiman Marcus.
Neiman Marcus isn’t the only store that is using this cutting-edge technology. UK urban clothing line Superdry, which blends Americana style with Japanese inspired graphics, has used their version of smart mirrors in their Berlin, Germany flagship since 2016. And smart mirrors just aren’t to try on clothes either. There are 58 MemoMi dressing room mirrors in 34 Neiman Marcus locations across the US, mirrors that let customers try on makeup colors in 19 stores and mirrors to try on sunglass styles in 5 stores.
As more companies vie to keep up with the times, expect to see the smart mirror pop up more and more in retail stores, helping to make to the customer shopping experience (and them reaching in their wallets to pay) as easy as possible.