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Innovation Design Engineering (MA/MSc)

Moenika Chowdhury

Moenika is an interdisciplinary designer who creates products and services based on human interactions with a targeted interest in the music, beauty and computer software industry.

She is from New Jersey, USA and earned a bachelors degree in Music Technology & Computer Science at Stevens Institute of Technology before attending the RCA & Imperial College of London. She incorporates global perspectives on design & technology from the UK and the world in her work. Moenika appreciates the power of design thinking in technology by taking risks to explore this paradigm through prototyping and designing for different industries. All of these designs are created with a human-centered design approach; putting the users first in every project. 

Among other innovations, Moenika has built a music therapy toy for children with learning disabilities and an exercise bike attachment allowing remote tandem riding for retirees. This type of diversity in projects has allowed her to think big but also focus on the details of the development process.


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Degree Details

School of Design

Innovation Design Engineering (MA/MSc)

2020 has posed a design challenge for Moenika and her degree project, but it has allowed important elements of it to be brought to light.

This project began with the simple question of how technology might revolutionize the makeup industry. Makeup routines have been the same for the past 50 years, with the only elements changing being the applicators and brands we use.

There are problems in the beauty industry that aren’t being addressed in current products on the market; sustainability, inclusivity, and wellness. The main problem Moenika set out to design for was the shocking fact that the majority of makeup products are ridden with e-coli, staph, and other dangerous microbes that can lead to the herpes virus and meningitis, and more commonly acne and eye infections. 

80% of women are using expired makeup due to the disproportionate about of product to packaging ratio. Makeup contains preservatives, and when expired results in accelerated bacteria growth within the product. Therefore, most people are putting bacteria that could lead to infection on their skin, and you cannot wash your products with soap and water like you do with makeup applicators.

Violet: Cleaner Beauty — Portable MiniGlo cleaning opened makeup products.

How clean is your makeup routine? — Important statistics about makeup and germs.

Glolight: Makeup’s Healthy Glow — The Glolight cleaning blush, with the closed Miniglo on the right.

Glolight in action — The Glolight cleaning blush.

Glolight turned off. — The Glolight closes after cleaning cycle.

Miniglo in action — The Miniglo cleaning blush and lipstick.

Glolight in action — The Glolight cleaning blush.

Why, when we avoid expired food, are we so comfortable using expired makeup?

There is currently no solution to clean makeup products without adding an extra product to it which could lead to more skin problems.

The issue doesn’t stop at expired products. 9 out of 10 makeup products have harmful bacteria growth, including in and out of date products, making this an all-encompassing issue.

If people simply throw out all of their products when they expire there would be a highly accelerated increase in the amount of waste the industry produces, this is already 120 billion units a year, and mostly plastic. People would also have to replace their makeup more frequently, which would increase the average amount of money spent on makeup a year, which is already high at £482 for British women on average.

Current research led to the definition and intent of the project; to prolong the life of beauty products to extend the use of non-recyclable packaging, without the damaging effects of bad bacteria.

Violet is a range of products that offer a daily cleaning solution for your makeup harnessing the power of microbial killing light wavelengths, extending the life and health of makeup products.

Light inactivates microorganisms by destroying nucleic acids and disrupting their DNA, leaving them unable to perform cellular functions, and is effective against microbes like e-coli and staph infection, commonly found in makeup.

To be accessible to all types of makeup users, there is a portable and stationary product; the Glolight and the MiniGlo.

The Glolight sits on your makeup counter and is activated to sanitize makeup before use. In the time it takes for you to apply your cream and primer the Glolight kills surface level bacteria on your essential products, allowing you to use your makeup with hygiene confidence.

And for the beauty user on the go there is MiniGlo, glow on the go. MiniGlo is the size of your mascara and fits in your makeup bag. It’s suction cup base attaches to any surface creating healthy makeup habits anywhere you apply your makeup.

Both the Glolight and MiniGlo close securely to ensure safety from the UV LEDs.

Violet products are a constant reminder of the importance of product wellness on your makeup counter and bag.
beautydesign for social impactengineeringgermsinnovationlightmakeupproduct design

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