Improving spiritual wellbeing through personalized aura scanning app
The Problem
Our Challenge
In an increasingly agnostic society, personal wholeness of the mind/body/spirit is lacking.
How might we facilitate practices to empower users spiritually?
Your aura is the energy field that surrounds your body. It acts as a magnetic field of energy that picks up on emotions, health, psychic debris and circumstances around you. If an app was able to read each person's aura, can we pinpoint exactly how to improve users wellbeing, and if so, could this be a game changer for spirituality in today's society?
What success would look like
Our Goals
Creating a personalized spirituality app that adapts to each user's needs.
3D Body scan feature to read and interpret user's aura.
Recommend activities based on each aura scan to improve mind/body/spirit balance.
Increased self-awareness which will lead to inner peace and happiness.
Overall improvement in mental health, wellness, and spiritual healing.
The process - empathize, define, imagine, bring to life, and verify
We had posted a 9 multiple-choice question, anonymous google survey through social media, to get a sense of how people view spirituality in their own lives.
Over a two day span, we had a total of 90 participants take our survey.
Key Takeaways:
60% turn to spirituality to improve mental health.
56% are interested in expanding their current spirituality.
48% said that time prevents them from furthering their spirituality.
40% don't know where to start on their journey.
The desire for increased spirituality is evident.
User Interviews
We conducted 6 moderated user interviews of participants who expressed interest in better understanding their own spirituality.
Our goal was to understand user motivations and pain points with their current practices.
Users want something to put their faith in, especially during this COVID pandemic.
Users are skeptical of what to believe in.
Users concept of spirituality is outdated.
Users are open to new ideas and practices, but do not know where or how to begin, or what is best for them.
"When you're searching for answers, it starts with you. You really need to know yourself first to understand spirituality and what path is best for you." 
Competitor Analysis
Is there anything like this already out there...?
We conducted a competitive audit to familiarize ourselves with similar products that may already exist in the market. We discovered that there are a bunch of self-care apps designed to make achieving your wellness goals easier. The more popular apps carried emphasis on meditation, sleep, journaling, breath work, and exercise.
Insight #1:
✔ Mind
✔ Body
...What about spirit?
✔ Too many paywalls that limit content
We struggled to find any established apps that focused on spirituality in a non-biblical way. We struggled even more to find an app that could easily identify and curate personalized suggestions to improve the mind/body/spirit trifecta.
Insight #2:
✔ 'One size fits all' solutions for users
✔ Spirituality not seen as a necessity
We acknowledge that the development of Soulvana may need to wait a few years for technology to catch up as to accommodate a mobile 3D body aura scanner, but there really aren't any other applications like it.
Two User Personas
Top User Needs
We collected a lot of data on our 2 user types and needed to streamline our findings and prioritize the main focus areas that aligned with our overall research goals. We utilized empathy mapping, user journey scenarios, and a feature prioritization matrix so we could proceed to design with the most impact.
Our users need:
Personalized features and suggestions to facilitate in solidifying self-awareness.
Simple, yet aesthetically pleasing interface design.
Easy navigation.
Recommended products and resources.
Community, mentorship, discussion boards.
"One-Stop Shop" for spirituality.
Bringing it all together
Design & Prototype
With our goals, features, and processes mapped we moved into the next phase of actually building the app starting with some rough sketches. I combined all of the sketched screens onto one board so that we were able to see and adjust user flows and navigation quickly.
After we input our sketched wireframes in Figma, we then brought them to life in mid-fidelity form. In each iteration, the app's functionality was streamlined to the point where assumptions could be tested and allow time to implement testing insights.
An example of the mid-fidelity's evolution can be seen in the design pictured to the left. Originally, we thought the "Community" icon should be in the main nav for easy access from any page, but a "Shop" icon in its placed proved a better option. Users also encouraged moving "Community" to a section on the home page and replacing "Trending" with "Suggested Activities."
UI Refinement
We put together a collaborative moodboard, using InVision, for inspiration before creating our own design system.
Style Guide
Once we felt in agreement with the visual feel, we decided on a design system to ensure consistency across all screens and ease the development process.
Usability Testing
Six participants were tested, one-on-one, in a remote moderated setting. They were asked to complete two tasks:
1. Complete a 3D body scan of their aura.
2. Add a crystal starter kit to their cart.
All six participants were able to successfully complete both tasks with ease and found that the process was simple and straightforward. There were minor adjustments needed, most of which required swapping and renaming or rewording certain sections. (See to the right for example)
Bringing the whole project to life
Interaction Design
After our mid-fidelity prototype was given a facelift with our applied style guide designs, we focused on animating the prototype so that it was a closer reflection of how our users would use the app. Each feature below was driven by research, user stories, user testing and feedback.
Animating our logo
Since the concept of Soulvana is ahead of the technology curve, we wanted to flex a more interactive component and utilized After Effects to animate our custom logo design.
This is as seen on our splash screen, just before the coaching screens begin.
Interactive Body Scan
Again, waiting for technology to catch up for an actual 3D body aura scan feature available on mobile.. But, we conceptualized what the idea of the 3D body scan would be like.
By scanning and calculating the electromagnetic fields from the energy of the user's aura, Soulvana will be able to pinpoint exactly how to restore the balance of the user's mind/body/spirit.
One-Stop Shop
Convenience is key
✔ Aura Body Scans (no limit)
✔ Personalized recommendations each time
✔ Mentorship and discussion board communities available
✔ In-app spiritual boutique shopping to buy exactly what is recommended to improve your wellbeing
✔ Starter packs for beginners
Front-End Development
Now that we had finalized the app, we needed to create our responsive website. The website will provide information about Soulvana and how to download. We utilized BootStrap for developing our CSS framework, and hosted on GitHub.
Our responsive website can be found here.
Final Thoughts
As a team, we were really proud of the app we'd created in just a few weeks. We are constantly being pushed to "think big" and to get as innovative as possible, and we did just that with our idea of Soulvana. The challenge was to create a product that would bring value to people's lives, and although Soulvana isn't entirely feasible yet, we had so much fun running with it and all the feedback received along the way.
If we had more time, we would have loved to design a smart watch prototype.