"Smile mirror uses a combination of different technologies to show your reflection only when you smile. It functions by recognizing the movement of facial muscles and is based on the principle of creating reasons for people to physically smile and by doing so, feel emotionally happy. The product system consists of a glass mirror, a smart material, a camera to detect facial movement, and enclosed electronic circuitry. Initially designed for cancer patients as a part of designer Berk Ilhan's thesis project “Uplift: Cultivating Happiness and Communication in the context of Cancer”, Smile Mirror encourages people to smile and see their smiling faces in the mirror, with the bigger purpose of engaging them with their positive, loving, and smiling self.
"Having interviewed with cancer patients, oncologists, and family caregivers to reveal and identify latent needs, designer Berk Ilhan found out that morale is a key factor for improving the quality of life of the patients. There are numerous studies that prove the physiological benefits of smiling and laughing. These benefits are boosting immune system, reducing stress, and increasing the natural killer cells in the body, which is known to fight against cancer. Berk was also inspired by the words of an interviewee during his primary research. Stacey, a cancer survivor, told Berk that she found it difficult to look at herself in the mirror during the first days of her cancer diagnosis. This leaded Berk to the Smile Mirror by asking “How could we encourage people to see their smiling faces?"