L'Oreal Is Going to Start Using 3D-Printed Skin for Product Testing

It could be a huge breakthrough for the beauty world.
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The next time you buy foundation, it might have been developed thanks to 3-D printing. L'Oreal is going high-tech with its testing, partnering with bioprinting company Organovo to develop 3-D printed skin tissue.

Here's how it works, according to The Telegraph: Nozzles on a 3-D printer dispense "bio ink," which consists of human cells. The "ink" forms layers on a flat hydrogel surface, the cells bond together, and the skin tissue forms. Organovo has created blood vessels and organs using this technology. Here's a video showing the process:

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L'Oreal has been interested in skin-making tech for decades. Bloomberg reports the beauty brand has gigantic lab facilities in France dedicated to growing skin tissue, cultivated from samples donated by plastic-surgery patients. They then grow the samples in an environment similar to the human body, and they produce 54 square feet of the stuff every year, keeping some and selling some to other companies.

With 3-D printing, L'Oreal is hoping the process will go faster, and Organovo hopes to use the rights to the skin models for medical purposes and drug testing. Plus, L'Oreal doesn't test its products on animals, and this new technology could help other companies follow suit.

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