Anicet Mbida 06:51, March 28, 2023

Anicet Mbida gives us every morning what is best in innovation. This Tuesday, he is interested in the arrival of virtual models on online clothing sales sites to visualize the outfits on models that resemble us as much as possible.

The innovation of the day is the arrival of virtual mannequins on online clothing sales sites. The goal? Visualize the outfits on models that resemble us as much as possible.

A priori laudable idea. Not everyone has the body of a supermodel. Not easy, either, to know how we will fit a garment in size XL when we see it only worn in size XS. That's why Levi's, Calvin Klein, Tommy Hilfiger and a few others, will soon offer the same garment, worn by several models, with different body types, ages and skin colors. One way, I quote them, "to bring a little more diversity, inclusion and sustainability to the fashion industry."

This is where the good idea to start turns into absolute cynicism. Because the mannequins in question will actually be generated by artificial intelligence. They could have hired more different people and created jobs. But they preferred to save money by replacing them with virtual mannequins and mask everything with a need for diversity.

Does this mean that the clothes worn by these fake models will also be virtual?

Yes, it's all fake! They are 3D mannequins dressed in 3D clothes. It is very well done. I challenge you to distinguish humans from virtual mannequins. The technology is really impressive. We owe it to the Dutch of (nothing to do with the film).

But as you can see, what annoys me is the diversity and sustainable development side. Instead of putting models out of work, they could have taken our measurements and displayed their clothes directly in our photos. Use us as models.

Does this technology already exist that turns us into a virtual mannequin?

Yes. But it is quite tedious: you have to recreate your avatar online with your photo and measurements. The clothes are then automatically plated on this virtual avatar. Problem: the result is not always to our advantage. So, we prefer for now, to rely on virtual mannequins. This makes it possible to optimize the looks and continue to sell dreams... even with different morphologies.

It was already not given to everyone to be a model. We will now have to reckon with competition from artificial intelligence.