When entering the Atolla Skin Lab pop-up you gaze upon the colorful liquids in elongated glass recipients. The environment makes you feel like you’re walking into a chemistry lab. When you look further you discover professional photography equipment as if you are in a studio and soon become a bit disoriented! So what’s really going on here? We sat down with Atolla Skin Lab Co-Founder, Meghan Maupin to learn out more about her brand and how opening a pop-up store has worked for her.
“We’re a skin care company making personalized products,” Maupin notes before detailing out the process. The initial step when a customer walks in is for them to take a survey. With IPads in hand, Atolla staffers ask the client about their lifestyle, habitat, and the products they use on their skin which is then entered into their program. Then, a basic and UV photograph of the client’s face is taken to track skin damage over time. For the last step, oil and moisture levels of one’s skin are measured and added to the profile that mathematically calculates a “skin sequence” (classification of skins across multiple metrics) that can be matched with the appropriate ingredients that the skin needs.
The idea of made-to-measure skin care products came when Maupin met partners Sid Salvi and dermatologist Dr. Ranella Hirsch at an entrepreneurship event at MIT. The base for the project came from a simple observation: skin care products are made for archetypical skin types but no one has the same skin! If they could find a way to identify what skin needs what product, they could revolutionize the industry.
Opening a pop-up store is part of this program. During their one week pop-up, they are able to reach customers to start creating these skin profiles. “It’s going pretty well,” says Maupin, “So far we’ve booked up all our appointments for the week. Likely we will continue to have pop-up events, it’s a really good test for us and allows us to reach directly to our customers.”