Sephora Universe

Pioneering Beauty’s Digital Frontier with Next-gen Brand Experiences
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Sephora Builds Beauty Platform Revolutionizing Virtual Commerce 

The Challenge: Cultivating the next generation of beauty consumers

Sephora is a $10+ Billion USD retail business for beauty products with nearly 340 brands represented along with their own private label. Owned by the LVMH group, Sephora represents the best of breed for the beauty vertical, with 2,600+ stores across 34 countries worldwide. 

With fantastic customer engagement in their brick-and-mortar stores, Sephora recognized an opportunity to elevate the average eCommerce experience to be more intimate and playful; one that sparks the same level of exploration and joy that their consumers typically experience in the Sephora stores. The challenge was clear - how to make beauty shopping a personalized, immersive, and interactive experience for Gen Z consumers and beyond, no matter when or where they are logging on.

The Solution

A premium and playful world is born: Sephora Universe - the ultimate destination for beauty discovery. The Shape team helped Sephora build a web-first, mobile-friendly Sephora Universe with a series of exclusive features: 
New Brand Experience Platform
Sephora took a bold step by introducing a cutting-edge Brand Experience Platform that seamlessly integrated gamified features, product exploration, and multiple brand experiences housed within Sephora’s flagship world. This platform became the epicenter for a revolutionary approach to beauty retailing that all brands in the entire beauty vertical can participate in. 
Virtual Flagship Store
Sephora Universe brought the flagship store experience to the digital realm that can be joined from anywhere at any time. Users could virtually navigate through the store, explore products, engage with interactive displays, and play in experiences that go beyond the conventional retail setting.
Immersive PDPs (Product Display Pages)
Using Shape’s 2D to 3D AI technology, we built hyper-realistic digital twins of products that are brought to life in next-level Product Display Pages. In this 3D environment users could view the product in 360 degrees, learn about product info by exploring the scene, teleport to exclusive brand experiences, or head to the eCommerce website to purchase the item. 
Virtual Products
Virtual products are introduced throughout Sephora Universe to be larger than life, beautiful, and interactive. Not limited to shelf space in the 3D land, we used our AI-infused pipelines to efficiently produce at scale a collection of products with hyper-realistic details that can be examined up close.
Brand Experiences
Sephora built exclusive brand experiences and dedicated spaces for fans of Guerlain, Givenchy, and Makeup Forever. Users could explore these curated spaces, discover new products, finish quests to learn about ingredients and brand philosophy, and even win makeup looks to wear on their avatars. 
Guerlain experience inside Sephora Universe

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Realistic Avatar Customization
Understanding Gen Z's affinity for self-expression and the importance of realistic representation of beauty and makeup, we built on realistic avatar customization tools with a dash of Metaverse magic. Customers could create virtual representations of themselves or even go beyond real-world limitations and have an alternative self, experimenting with different makeup looks, outfits, and products. This not only served as a fun and engaging feature but also acted as a powerful tool to build product awareness for brands at the beginning of the purchase journey.
Beauty Advisors Avatars
To enhance the personalized touch and provide guidance to navigate the world, Sephora introduced virtual Beauty Advisors. These brand ambassador avatars provided guidance on navigation tips, things to explore, quests to complete, and served as experts to introduce useful product info, creating a virtual shopping assistant that is available 24/7.
To add more fun to the experience, we incorporated game activities like the Sephora Collection Fruit Pursuit track race and brand quests for users to complete. Non-Fungible Token (NFT) collections and brand-exclusive avatar accessories as rewards add an element of exclusivity and collectability that resonated strongly with Gen Z’s thirst for gamified experiences.

The Result

Virtual Commerce Redefined

Sephora Universe revolutionized virtual commerce for the beauty industry and beyond. The brand successfully transcended traditional online shopping by creating an interactive retail environment that redefined brand engagement and product exploration, fostering a new generation of consumers while driving eCommerce conversion. 

Foundations for Gen Z eCom Platform

With Sephora Universe, Shape helped build solid foundations for a Gen Z-centric eCommerce platform dedicated to Sephora. With avatar systems, features, and world design in place, content can continuously be updated to bring fresh new experiences extending to the future.

New Engagement Channels for Data and Conversion

This new venture not only redefined virtual commerce but also empowers Sephora and participating brands with a whole new channel to engage consumers, build loyalty, drive traffic to eCommerce properties, and collect actionable data.  
Sephora's journey to conquer the future of beauty eCommerce experiences stands as a testament to the brand's commitment to innovation and their consumers. By embracing next-gen technologies, Sephora Universe not only met the challenge of cultivating Gen Z audiences but set a new standard for beauty retailing in the digital age. 

Sephora Universe is currently invite-only in the EU region. Join the waitlist:


We partnered with the amazing XR Media Group, a pioneer in developing award winning XR experiences to develop an advanced Augmented Reality app for Red Bull Rampage, a world renowned free-ride mountain biking competition.


We partnered with the amazing XR Media Group, a pioneer in developing award winning XR experiences to develop an advanced Augmented Reality app for Red Bull Rampage, a world renowned free-ride mountain biking competition.

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