Fashion or function? Self-tracking design specifically for women.

The benefits of self-tracking are not gender specific, yet some preliminary surveys indicate that women may only represent about 33% of the Quantified Self population. Designers are now addressing the gender gap of wearable technology by creating products that are both functional and fashionable in order to entice more women to start tracking.

For many women, the function of the self-tracker is enough, and the appearance of the device might not be an important issue. But for some women, the bulky or sporty design of products like the Pebble watch are unappealing. Since self-tracking works best when it's done consistently, the device should feel as invisible as possible to the user. Wearable technology that blends in or remains unseen will likely be an important factor for many women choosing smart apparel.

Two products in particular, the Memi smart bracelet and the Ringly smart ring, hope to bring the advantages of wearable technology to women who might not be interested in a more conspicuous product.

Both the Memi  and the Ringly are designed as fashion accessories that perform similar functions to today's smart watches, notifying the user of incoming communications. The advantage of being able to keep phones and devices out of sight and still respond to prioritized messages will likely appeal to women who are fashion-conscious yet still want to stay connected. Both products are working to overcome the challenges presented by the products' smaller size and shape. Read more about these fashion-forward devices here.

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