What if you could get your nails done in 10 minutes for $10 and not have to make small talk?
Six Target stores in Minnesota, California and Texas are piloting a new service in which a robot pipes polish onto fingernails, leaving no brush lines.
According to Clockwork’s website, women spend an average of 3,120 minutes a year on their nails, or 52 hours.
Clockwork offers this solution, according to its website: “The first robot manicure for unstoppable humans. No slip ups. No slow down. No small talk.”
The box-like machines are stationed at the end of store aisles. Users book and pay for their appointments online.
A user places their hand inside the box where machines guided by cameras, data and algorithms precisely locate the edges of the nail to inform a pipette where to apply the polish.
According to a recent report, CNN technology writer Rachel Metz tried the service twice.
She reported: “Clockwork’s robots aren’t perfect: The first time I visited, the pipette that pushes out polish appeared to clog after painting a few nails, and several of my nails were painted so poorly around the edges that the machine’s attendant fixed them by hand. It took about 20 minutes to complete a coat in a honey-yellow hue, which is twice as long as the company’s goal.”
The second time, she held her hands as still as possible. “Maybe it helped: the painting process went a lot faster overall, and my nails (this time bright red) required hardly any touch-ups.”
At this point, Clockwork only applies a coat of colored nail polish, although Clockwork’s CEO and founder Renuka Apte told Metz the machines will soon be able to apply a top coat.
Clockwork does not replace a full manicure service, which typically includes clipping and filing nails, trimming or pushing back cuticles and moisturizing.
According to CNN, Clockwork’s machines are an attempt “to make such robots more common in everyday life; they’re aimed at people who want something in between a sit-down manicure (which can be costly and time-consuming) and do-it-yourself nail painting (which, if you’re like me, can be extremely messy).”