The buzzy disposable camera photo app taps into powerful human emotions to create a product experience that keeps us coming back for more.

A shop window painted with alternating smiling faces and frowning faces, taken on the photo app Dispo.
A shop window painted with alternating smiling faces and frowning faces, taken on the photo app Dispo.
A photo taken on Dispo in Shoreditch, London

I’ve always loved disposable cameras. Back in the pre-iPhone, pre-social media days, I used these throwaway cameras as a way to capture my life — trips to the water park with friends, school field trips, sleepovers. I can still remember exactly what it sounded like to turn the scroll wheel before taking a photo. There was something special about the whole experience — it was exciting to drop the camera off at the local drug store to get developed, not knowing how the pictures would turn out until they came back in their orange Kodak envelope. …


Trending videos from Douyin, the Chinese version of Tik Tok, have made an official crossover into the international app — and people can’t get enough.

If you’re on Tik Tok, you’ve probably seen the videos by now — an endless loop of incredibly-dressed Chinese influencers walking down the streets of the fashion districts of Beijing and Chengdu. When each person turns to look toward the camera, the video goes into slow motion, making their already icy-cool stare-downs seem even more badass.

Everything about these videos is enthralling — the fashion, the attitudes, the high-quality production, the K-Pop and Chinese hip-hop soundtracks… and of course, the novelty of seeing people in head-to-toe, capital-letter LOOKS at a time when many of us are spending our days at…


Testing in-store before buying has long been the preferred way for customers to shop for beauty products — but in a post-COVID-19 world, the beauty shopping experience will have to change drastically in order to survive.

Photo by Yunona Uritsky on Unsplash

One night, a few years ago, my friends and I had the brilliant idea to stop by the Times Square Sephora to do our makeup before heading to a nearby concert. We were a few drinks in and thought it would be fun to deck ourselves out in blue lipstick and gold glitter eyeshadow and sparkly highlighter — all the impractical products we wouldn’t typically spend money on, but would be perfect for dancing under the colored lights at Terminal 5.

Turns out, we weren’t the only ones with this idea: the store was absolutely packed with women all doing…


Your ultimate guide to running an awesome design thinking workshop while everyone’s working from home in their pajamas.

Photo by Bonneval Sebastian on Unsplash

A design thinking workshop can be a great way to generate creative solutions for business problems, giving teams the opportunity to understand the challenges, build empathy for users, brainstorm ideas, and prototype and iterate possible solutions.

These workshops can also be a great way to introduce the principles of design thinking to your team, helping them build creative confidence and bring a more innovative mindset to their day-to-day work.

But let’s face it — translating the design thinking workshop to a remote work environment is a challenge. Many of the standard design thinking activities are designed to inspire creativity through…


Under new editorial leadership, magazines are slowly but surely leaning into diversity and rethinking beauty and fashion ideals.

British Vogue’s latest cover stars: a Waitrose supermarket worker and 85-year-old Dame Judi Dench

Last month, Dame Judi Dench became the oldest person to ever appear on the cover of British Vogue, at age 85. This month, the magazine celebrated UK essential workers by featuring three different amazing women on its cover — train driver Narguis Horsford, midwife Rachel Millar, and Waitrose supermarket assistant Anisa Omar. They appeared wearing not designer clothing but rather their everyday uniforms.

As a longtime magazine reader, these covers stunned me. Historically, fashion magazines have held a nearly singular perspective, one that is thin, white, young, heterosexual, cisgender, and airbrushed. Cover stars have been actresses, models, occasionally First Ladies…


The classic Instagram influencer model — never speak out, focus on image over substance — doesn’t work in today’s world.

Photo by Prateek Katyal on Unsplash

Last week, Russian-born Instagram influencer Kris Schatzel went viral after video footage of her posing for a photo shoot at a Black Lives Matter protest was posted on Twitter. The video, which shows Kris fixing her outfit and hair to get the perfect photo while blocking actual protesters from marching, represented everything that people love to hate about influencer culture: the unabashed materialism, the clueless narcissism, the focus on image over substance. …


#BlackoutTuesday is a striking statement — but implemented the wrong way, could create a blackout of information at a time when we need it most.

The #blacklivesmatter hashtag on Instagram, full of black squares for #blackouttuesday

You may have noticed that Instagram is a sea of black squares today. Celebrities, brands, influencers, and everyday users have all been posting black squares as part of “Blackout Tuesday,” a show of solidarity with the #BlackLivesMatter movement and protest of ongoing police brutality and racism around the world.

While these posts are well-intentioned — and it is certainly a striking statement to open Instagram and see, well, nothing — it is also creating a literal blackout of information on a platform that has become an increasingly powerful tool for driving change.

As many activists have pointed out, the #blacklivesmatter…


We were at the height of the “Instagram experience” — then COVID-19 struck. But we’re still hungry for novelty, connection, and moments of awe— perhaps now more than ever.

The sprinkle pool at the Museum of Ice Cream (photo by Vanessa McKeown)

Just a few short months ago, you couldn’t open Instagram without seeing someone sinking into the ball pit at the Color Factory or splashing around in a swimming pool filled with plastic sprinkles at the Museum of Ice Cream.

I went to Daybreaker dance parties before work and accepted sweaty hugs from strangers, waited in line for two hours to spend five minutes in a packed Yayoi Kusama infinity room, high-fived my way through trendy fitness classes, hung out at the pink-hued co-working space The Wing, tried every new crazy dessert Dominique Ansel dreamed up, and took all the necessary…

Anna Hyclak

I’m a product manager and MBA student based in London, with a passion for technology, creativity, business, and social justice.

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