China’s Makeup Sharing Rooms Provides On-the-Go Solutions

A Palestinian girl has her makeup applied as she prepares to act in a play titled "Us Too, Women of Palestine", inspired by Greek tragedian Aeschylus's ÒThe Suppliant WomenÓ, in Ramallah, in the Israeli-occupied West Bank January 19, 2019. Picture taken January 19, 2019. (Photo: REUTERS/Raneen Sawafta)

China recently saw a boom in "shareable makeup rooms" that is said to provide women with budget-saving and on-the-go solutions for their daily looks.

The rooms are small but feature a complete set of cosmetics for those who went out without makeup or those who cannot afford to buy every item needed for a full face makeover.

Customers who want to try China's makeup sharing rooms can use their phones to scan a Quick Response (QR) code for payment. The door will open to reveal a dressing table and chair set.

BBC noted that the small room is also home to beauty products that come from Western providers. There is a wide range of cosmetics to choose from including eye shadows, lipsticks, moisturizers, foundations, and more.

An estimated 4,000 yuan in beauty products is inside each room, which is why government-run channel CCTV installed cameras in the rooms.

While it costs a lot for the makers to come up with the rooms, the Wuhan branch, among others, offers affordable fees to customers. A maximum of 58 yuan can be spent by one customer anywhere between 15 and 45 minutes.

Ms. Liu, a customer who used the Wuhan branch, said of the latest Chinese innovation, "I thought the shared make-up room was great, a very creative idea and a very novel invention."

Another customer who used a room in Shanghai said she will definitely patronize the makeup sharing rooms. Since she suffers from damaged skin, she believes the high-end products provided by the make-up rooms will help improve her skin condition.

The makeup pods started popping up in various Chinese cities since October 2018. Most of the rooms set up by private companies are spread across Nanjing, Beijing, Guangzhou, and Shanghai. The rooms are similar to public dressing rooms set up in South Korea and Japan but the difference is, China's pods have a one-customer-at-a-time policy since the rooms are significantly smaller compared to the public service areas in other countries.

While most women who used the cubicles shared positive experiences about the new idea, a few others expressed concerns relating to hygiene.

In an earlier report by The Global Times, a customer surnamed Hu said of the cubicles, "It might be a good idea, but I am not willing to share cosmetics with others because it's not very hygienic."

Despite some opposition, some experts believe that China's makeup sharing rooms could actually make good money in the long run. Once the service gets the attention of working women, the makeup cubicles could provide owners with a good, steady profit within the next few years.

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