Table of Contents
What Is STEM?. 4
Hi-Tech Fashion Design. 6
Developing New Products. 12
Product Safety . 18
Market Research. 24
Merchandising . 30
Web Development. 36
STEM Careers. 42
STEM Job Fact Sheet. 44
Index . 47
Show What You Know. 47
Websites to Visit. 47
About the Author . 48
What Is STEM?
Would you like to work as a fashion designer using a computer program to design a dress for a Paris fashion show? How about a chemist testing different formulations for a new face cream? Or maybe a web designer creating an online site where customers can view and purchase a company’s clothing line?
These people all have great jobs in fashion and beauty. But they have something else in common, too. All their jobs require a STEM education. STEM is a shortcut for talking about science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.
All industries need people with STEM skills to build and develop the next great thing. A strong STEM education will prepare you for unique careers in the exciting world of fashion and beauty. What great STEM jobs are waiting for you?
Hi-Tech Fashion Design
Fashion designers help create the billions of shirts, suits, dresses, shoes, and other items sold every year. Designers study fashion trends and create designs of new clothing and accessories. They select colors and fabrics. They oversee the production of the design.
In the fashion industry, a new collection is created with more than fabric and thread. Fashion designers rely on hi-tech computers and software to design clothing and construct patterns. Using computer-aided design (CAD) programs, designers experiment with ideas. CAD programs show the designer what the finished garment will look like.
Designers construct patters for their clothing so that the items can be mass-produced. Designers use CAD software to design individual pieces of clothing or entire collections. They use the software to draw garments, add color, create woven textures, drape fabric over models, and adjust sizing. Using computer technology, fashion designers can easily create multiple samples and variations.
STEM Spotlight: Eco-Friendly Clothing
Some fashion designers are using science to develop new fabrics and designs. British fashion designer Stella McCartney was one of the first designers to support sustainable fashion. Today, many fashion houses are creating ecofriendly clothing. They use recycled materials and organically grown materials to create new garments.
Developing New Products
Thousands of perfumes, lotions, cosmetics, and hair products line store shelves. Who creates all of these products? This is the job of cosmetic scientists who work in the beauty industry. They invent and improve hair, skin care, and make-up products.
Cosmetic scientists work in labs where they develop recipes for new products. They learn the formulas of existing products so that they can understand how each product works. Then they use that knowledge to develop new and improved formulas. They create beauty products that make people feel better, younger, and more confident.
To create a new product, cosmetic scientists mix and measure ingredients. They test each recipe and measure how effective it is. Scientists who develop hair products test hair samples to see which formula creates the most shine or best improves hair strength. Sometimes, a cosmetic scientist will file a patent for a new product formula.