When I was in eighth grade, I remember overhearing a conversation between two male classmates wondering how girls made their eyes look different colors on different days. (Eyeshadow. They were parsing out the concept of eyeshadow.) I sincerely hope that those two boys have since grown up to be adult men who are no longer confused about makeup. But if they haven’t, there’s now an app that can help them figure out what percentage of a woman’s selfies is natural beauty and what percentage is witchcraft.
Yes, with MakeApp, no longer will a nice guy have to spend hours on Photoshop painstakingly removing mascara lash by lash in order to let his female friends know that they’d be so much prettier if they complied to his standards instead of deciding for themselves what to do with their faces. Designed by an AI startup founded by Ashot Gabrelyanov—formerly of the pro-Kremlin news outlet Life.ru—the app allows you to upload a photo of yourself or, let’s say, a celebrity you have some misogynistic fixation on, and either digitally add or remove makeup. You can do this five times before the app charges you $0.99 and/or someone files a restraining order against you.
I’m having trouble thinking of a non-sexist use for this app, whose core value seems to lie in slut-shaming and/or catching a gold-digging liar in an act of contoured deception. (Like many AI products, the app also has, let’s say, issues matching darker skin tones, adding a ganache of racism on top of this already-unappealing cake.) But Gabrelyanov, for his part, has one idea. He tells Business Insider that the app could be used to identify human trafficking victims, saying, “In most of these cases, makeup is heavily used to disguise the age and/or identity of these people ... heavily applied permanent makeup often makes the identification process quite difficult.”
Or you could use it to put makeup on male celebrities, as Gabrelyanov does on his Twitter page. Hilarious!