Now, women will be able to try on makeup and hairstyles from the convenience of their homes, thanks to Taaz.com, a new website co-founded by an Indian scientist and a San Diego computer science professor.
Co-founders Satya Mallick, a recent Jacobs School Ph.D, and San Diego's David Kriegman say that the new, easier and much more private way will revolutionize how women experience beauty.
From creating the perfect smoky eye to painting on a dramatic ruby-red lip for a night out on the town, taaz.com allows women to become their very own makeup artist and express themselves and their aspirations.
Anyone with a digital photograph can apply more than 4,000 makeup products with the click of a mouse.
The computer scientists invented an algorithm for separating gloss from non-gloss in digital images - a technical feat crucial for taaz.com's patented approach to applying photorealistic makeup to images. It is also useful for more traditional computer vision applications like face recognition.
Users start by uploading their own digital photo on taaz.com and then experiment with thousands of colours and shades in products ranging from foundation and concealer to multi-tone eye shadow and lip gloss, and even coloured contact lenses.
With the addition of a hairstyle or change of hair colour, the look is complete. The effects are immediate, simple to use and most importantly, extremely realistic.
After trying a taaz.com prototype, one user went home and bought a new pair of coloured contacts, says Kriegman.
Once you create a new look, you can share it with friends, post the picture in taaz.com'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 taaz.com.
"With taaz.com, we take something very complicated -- giving digital portraits a photorealistic makeover -- and make it very easy," said Mallick, who received a fresh Ph.D. in electrical engineering from UCSD.
Mallick's dissertation focused on the gloss removal algorithm that led to taaz.com.
"Most people put on high gloss lipstick to give their lips a moist, plump look. Our technology gives lips in digital images this same look," Kriegman said.