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We Let Amazon’s Alexa Be Our Fashion Intern for a Week
12.31.17

Sponsored by Amazon Echo Look

Wait a minute — have you met Sharon? I’m just realizing you haven’t met Sharon. She’s one of our most tenured and incompetent employees. You won’t have caught her on our Instagram stories, but you’ve probably caught her on the site: she’s the one responsible for any typos. Isn’t that rude? She also leaves food out on our counter and dirty forks in our sink. She hacks our emails and deletes random ones, making us flakes, and hides our keys, making us late. Whenever we have a story go up that you don’t agree with? Sharon. An outfit you don’t like? Also Sharon. Once, she even made us miss Diane Keaton’s birthday. We almost fired her.

Unfortunately, as far as invisible pseudo-employees go, Sharon is useful only as a scapegoat, and otherwise not at all. That’s why this past week has been so good: We replaced her with Alexa.. Alexa lives inside the Echo Look, a smart camera we invited into the Man Repeller office this past week to be our temporary fashion intern. The good news: She didn’t cause a single typo. The better news: We’d now like to bring her on full-time, New York employment law permitting.

Unlike Sharon, you probably did catch Alexa on our Instagram story. We were busy testing her out all week. Below is a recap of the most memorable things we did, up to but not including Harling engaging Alexa in water-cooler gossip, which I saw happen on three separate occasions.

Erica asked Alexa to take a photo of her outfit

“Asking Alexa to take a picture of me with Echo Look was extremely easy — way easier than asking a stranger on the street, finding a quality Instagram husband or asking my mom (because she’s all the way in California). After I vocalized my request, Alexa gave me a few seconds to finalize my pose, then cued a bright, sparkly flash. The real magic happened when I pulled the image up on my phone via the Echo Look app and I watched it edit in real time: the background softened and blurred, the image of me brightened, my face sharpened into focus. My pants have never looked so crisp. I showed Harling and she said I looked like I was in space. What more could you want?! My new dream is to enlist Alexa to help me create my own Cher Horowitz-style closet catalogue of every outfit combo I own so I’d never have to take another mirror selfie or try on outfits ever again.” –Erica

I (Haley) asked Alexa which of my outfits was better

“I’m famously indecisive, an irritating trait for all involved, so when I learned the Echo Look could analyze two outfits and tell me which was better, I told my colleagues to step aside. I showed Alexa two looks: both featured a pair of pink corduroy pants, but outfit #1 paired them with a gray sweater and green heels, and outfit #2 a camel sweater and white loafers.

It all took place inside a minute. I asked her to take my photo in both looks with my voice, and when both popped up on my phone in the Echo Look app, I used StyleCheck to get Alexa’s opinion. Apparently she (aka the algorithm) takes fit, color, styling and trends into considering, a.k.a. more than I take into consideration. She went gray/green, and tbh, I agreed.” —Haley (ME!)

Edith asked Alexa to check the weather before a shoot

“I needed to know what the weather was like before I headed out for an outdoor shoot after the sun had set at 4 p.m. I was busy setting up and didn’t want to go back to my computer to check. Alexa was very frank with me about the conditions outside, which I appreciated. In short, the temps were nippy! She didn’t sugarcoat the truth. I dutifully grabbed my jacket and braced for the cold. Every morning when I get dressed, I tackle the great form vs. function debate, seeking an outfit that can withstand shooting all day while also maybe being passable enough for post-work plans. I’m usually lazy about checking the weather though, because it requires my fingers, and so I make a lot of assumptions, which are 90% wrong. But Alexa’s thorough yet concise weather report required no work on my part, bless her.” —Edith

Harling asked Alexa to take a video of her outfit to see it from every angle

“I’ve dreamed of having a room big enough to accommodate a 360-degree mirror ever since moving into my first New York City apartment and discovered that shoebox rooms are apparently the norm. Is it so wrong to desire a comprehensive visual of my favorite pink corduroy pants from literally every angle? I think not, but alas, my shoebox only allows for a sorry excuse of a stick-on closet door mirror and nothing else.

Or rather, it did until I learned a 360-degree mirror could exist inside a six-inch-tall electronic device. Yes I’m talking about the Echo Look, and yes I’ve used the Man Repeller loaner to take not one but four (okay, fine, five) 360-degree videos of my outfits since it arrived on our doorstep last week. It’s shockingly easy and very fun. I say ‘shockingly’ because I hate instruction manuals but the Echo Look’s was a breezy breeze. I say ‘very’ because I enjoy looking at my butt — who doesn’t?” —Harling

If you want to try for yourself, request an invitation for the Echo Look here!!! We promise not to get mad when you start consulting Alexa instead of Man Repeller for fashion advice. We can’t keep her to ourselves.

Feature image by Edith Young. Photos by Alexa. 

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