Are Makeup Sharing Booths Hygienic?

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China has come up with a new idea for people to get to try high-end makeup like Dior. A company called 17BeautyBox has started a makeup sharing booth that allows you to try a variety of expensive cosmetics for 15 minutes inside a private pink booth. The experience costs about $4.

Inside the box, you can use any makeup that suits your taste. The concept of the booth is ideal for when you want to prep up for a special occasion or when you have an unexpected after-work engagement, or even when you just feel like adding some glamour to your look with a layer of luxurious makeup.

It is also a practical way of testing products before buying it in full size.

17BeautyBox is yet to come to the US, but Americans are already in the practice of sharing their makeup with other people. In various forums and websites, people are selling and swapping their makeup products, some used and some still sealed with their boxes intact.

Makeup sharing isn’t actually a new concept. In one way or another, most of us girls have shared makeup with each other. We have rummaged through our mom’s makeup pouch to try on her lipstick and have secretly borrowed our sister’s blusher. Nevertheless, there are still downsides to the concept of makeup sharing booths.

Despite the booths having enough sanitizing kits and hygiene products to assure that customers clean the products and makeup tools before and after use, there is no assurance that they’ll go through the process as it will already take much of their limited time. The company also doesn’t have a consistent regulation with regards to this concern. Words of caution over the various diseases that can be transmitted through makeup sharing are also making rounds on the internet. According to these warnings, it is possible to acquire eye and staph infection due to this practice.

So is the experience really worth it? Is it okay to spend $4, which is surely a good deal, to get the chance of dolling yourself up with the most high-end makeup brands, but risking the sanitation of your skin? Is the concept actually a way to reduce waste and promote sustainability? Is this just a case of misguided good intentions? These things still remain to be seen.