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3 high-tech shopping experiences you have to see to believe

By Time Out San Francisco editors
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You know that scene in Beauty and the Beast when Belle’s wardrobe turns her from peasant to princess for her big dance number? Or the moment in Cinderella when the fairy godmother transforms her rags into a beautiful ball gown? Well, these high-tech shopping experiences are almost as magical—plus you won’t have to worry about evil stepsisters.

 

Magic Wardrobe at Reformation

No need to get dressed again just to grab a new size when trying on clothes at Reformation—simply get the Magic Wardrobe to do it for you. From inside the dressing room, shoppers can request additional sizes, colors or styles from the monitor and then, moments later, open the wardrobe’s doors, so that your new piece is ready to be flaunted. The fitting rooms also have customizable lighting and the option of connecting your device and playing your own music. You may never want to leave.

Photograph: Courtesy MemoryMirror

MemoryMirror at Neiman Marcus

You’ll never need to ask the dressing room attendant for style advice again thanks to Neiman Marcus’s MemoryMirror: a full-length mirror with a 70-inch LCD screen, HD camera and powerful computer. The camera records eight-second videos (long enough for a full 360-degree twirl) that shoppers can play back to see how they look or even to compare outfits side by side. After logging in with an email address and personal ID number, the dedicated clotheshorse can also email the videos, post them on social media or text them to a friend for a second opinion. 

Sephora Innovation Lab

The days of methodically smelling every perfume in the aisle before finding one that suits you are over. The next time you’re in the market for a new scent, head to the Fragrance IQ station at Sephora on Powell Street. Customers need only answer a few questions (Are you looking for something masculine or feminine? Floral or fresh? Earthy or spicy?) before a representative scent gently wafts from an InstaScent nozzle above a sign reading Smell Here. At the Beauty Workshop in the center of the store, customers watch video tutorials on nail, hair and makeup techniques or use the Color IQ service: a touch-screen kiosk that weeds through thousands of shades to find the right foundation, concealer and lipstick for your skin tone. Elsewhere, Skincare IQ matches customers with treatments for puffy eyes or dry lips: just like magic.

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