December 28, 2000, 12:55 PM — You're shopping online. You see a snazzy shirt and spiffy suit and are tempted to order them in your size. But a little nagging voice in your head reminds you that the clothes may not look as fabulous on you as they do on screen. Sure, some online retailers will let you dress up model figures with your intended purchases, but that's more of a fun toy than a useful tool. What to do?
New Haven, Conn.-based CompuCloz (www.compucloz.com) has developed and patented software called "Digital Dressing Room" that lets users input measurements and photos of their faces and see what they'll look like with new clothes or even new haircuts. The technology, which started out as an application for interactive TV, has been licensed by Procter & Gamble for its South American retailers and will soon be seen on in-store kiosks in major U.S. department stores.
Monica Rebolledo, an assistant brand manager for Procter & Gamble's Pantene and Pert Plus product lines in Lima, Peru, says P&G set up kiosks outfitted with digital cameras and Digital Dressing Room software in retail stores. Customers can come in, have their picture taken and entered into the system, and then start experimenting with new hairstyles and makeup until they find a look they like. The kiosk then prints out a color picture that they can take to their own salon.
Customers love it. "We've had great results," says Rebolledo. "Some consumers even called to tell us how pleased they were."