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Emotional Mirror TechnologiesPhoto: Sensoree

With fitness trackers for dogs, partnerships between designer brands and fitness bands, and digital health apps dominating last week’s International Consumer Electronics Show (CES), health and fitness is at the forefront of efforts to connect consumers with technology. One unique trend — deemed “Emotional Mirror” technologies — seeks to make the simple act of wearing clothing an interactive tool for participating in (and communicating about) a healthy, happy lifestyle.

PSFK and Intel iQ highlighted these technologies in their “Future of Wearable Technology” report, out last week, which featured 10 major trends driving the form and function of personal devices. “Emotional Mirror” tech involves embedding sensors and display technologies into clothing and accessories, which then tap into the wearer’s emotions, physical exertion, and reactions to their environment and convey these responses outwardly for others to see.

The Ger Mood Sweater by Sensoree, for example, works almost like a mood ring for the entire body, monitoring bodily rhythms to interpret the wearer’s emotions and moods and outwardly displaying the corresponding color. Radiate Athletics' compression wear workout gear visualizes exercise activity levels in real time, changing colors in accordance with thermal output (or how much heat the body gives off) to give users a visual reference for targeting specific muscle groups as they exercise. And Cadbury’s interactive “Joy Jacket” lights up with a blinking LED light show, accompanied by songs and bursts of confetti, when users bite into a bar of chocolate, in order to display the feelings of joy (supposedly) experienced by doing so.

These “Emotional Mirror” technologies are intended to allow users to understand themselves and others better, facilitating communication and even self-improvement. But clothes that constantly reveal what we’re feeling raise the question: Do people really want to wear their heart on their sleeve?

Would you buy something that puts your emotions on display? Let us know in the comment section below or tweet the author at @cshih7.

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