Innovative ways to use Skype for design, beauty, wellness and cooking


Skype is no longer just for keeping in touch with your grandparents — many people are using it to get the everyday done better.

Mary Helen Bowers, the founder and CEO of Ballet Beautiful, started using Skype to stay in touch with her New York clients while traveling with actress Natalie Portman to prepare her for the film “Black Swan.”

Bowers originally launched the boutique business to do in-home training, but says with the integration of technology, she has been able to expand her business into remote classes.

“Because my workout is very portable, and it was designed to be done at home, it was just introducing a new element using technology — and it gave me so much more ability,” Bowers told

Skype made her more accessible and grew her reach, while also getting involved in what she called an “amazing experience” with actress Natalie Portman.

‘We had a fitting meeting and were in the same room although we were on different continents.’

– Makeup artist Pati Dubroff

From wellness to style and beauty, Skype is being integrated into both looking good and feeling good. Makeup artist Pati Dubroff connects with celebrity clients over the service, for example. Dubroff says Skype came to the rescue on a recent press tour with Charlize Theron in Paris, during a fitting for a red carpet outfit.

“We put the look together and … did a test run with her stylist in New York, so it was a way we can have this fitting meeting and be in the same room although we were on different continents.”

In addition, Dubroff says she uses the camera personally to touch base with family while traveling and to have meetings regarding sponsorship roles where she needs to see and be seen.

Skyping on your computer or TV may not include Smell-O-Vision, but recipes can be visually stimulating as well. Christina Tosi, pastry chef at New York City’s Momofuku Milk Bar, travels the world but stays connected with her kitchen.

“Me being a pastry chef, it’s so visual, it’s so interactive … sending emails never really does justice,” Tosi told

She said video conferencing with her team of chefs has been a fun way to generate new ideas ;and see the latest creations. “It makes me feel like I’m in the kitchen, keeps us all on the same page, and helps us plan out our next recipes, talking technique and how tos for our next cookie or cake truffle or soft-serve flavor.”

Jewelry designer Pamela Love sets up a virtual studio to style jewelry on someone and show her team exactly how she wants it to look.

“I can’t travel to another country for work and not be able to see everything that’s going on,” Love told

She is able to see prototypes first hand via the streaming service and sign off on them.

Love also uses Skype to build her team. “We also do a lot of interviewing over Skype, because a lot of people who come to work with us come from all over the world.”