A new company is trying to get retailers to use optical illusions to sell more products.
The Skinny Mirror, based out of California, sells mirrors with curved glass that make people look about 10 pounds thinner. The mirrors sell for between $US165 and $US5,500, depending on the size and frame materials.
The mirrors make people feel better about themselves, says Belinda Jasmine, the founder and designer of The Skinny Mirror.
For retailers, that inflated self image can turn into higher sales, she says.
A recent study of 86 shoppers at a lingerie store in Sweden found that people who used a dressing room with a Skinny Mirror reporter greater body satisfaction than those who used a regular mirror. More importantly, the shoppers who used a Skinny Mirror ended up purchasing more items.
88% of customers who used the Skinny Mirror made a purchase, compared to 73% of customers who used a regular mirror. the study found. Overall, the Skinny Mirror group contributed to 54% of total sales.
Jasmine says she had initially designed the mirror, which went on the market in January 2013, for the home market.
Then she started getting a number of orders from retailers, so she expanded the line of mirrors to include versions better suited for retail stores and dressing rooms.
So far, most of the orders have been coming from small boutiques, Jasmine says. But she’s in talks now with a popular apparel chain that has more than 450 stores worldwide. She asked that Business Insider refrain from publishing the name of the retailer because negotiations are still underway.
In response to critics who call the mirror deceptive, Jasmine notes that the Skinny Mirror logo is visibly displayed on every mirror. (She has had requests from retailers to remove the logo, however).
“It’s really subtle,” Jasmine says of the mirror’s effects. “It just gives you that little bit of extra hourglass.”
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