Posts filed under ‘Japanese Beauty’

It’s the Sun! Take Cover!

Japanese women aren’t fair-skinned by accident. They go to great lengths to stay out of the sun by wearing oversized hats and pulling up their sleeves. (Though to be fair, some women also like to work on their tan.)

With this handy-dandy UV ray checker, you can keep your vampire-white complexion flawless. Just hold it to the sky. UV rays are invisible to the naked eye, so you never know when you’re in danger. Too bad we don’t all sparkle in sunlight like Edward Cullen.

The 3-inch palette doubles as a mirror, so you can use it to pat on an extra heap of sun-block and double up on the SPF-45 lip balm. Then whenever UV rays hit it, it turns a different color. In other words, TAKE COVER! Amazing technology if you ask me. \(^0^)/

Himawari

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November 17, 2010 at 12:53 pm Leave a comment

The Freshen-Up Pouch

Like any good consumer, I have a pouch for all occasions — particularly for visits to the ladies room. After all, how tacky would it be to flaunt a sanitary napkin around the office. It’s like saying, “Hello world! Guess what time of the month it is!?”

Classy ladies always stay fresh, but they’re also discreet about it. So whether it’s a toothbrush, an eyeliner pencil, a Biore powder sheet, or that time of the month, I’m sure to keep it packed in a cute little bag.

Some of my favorite accessories come from Artisan&Artist, which specializes in small pouches packed with tons pockets. Quality-wise, they’re durable and the zipper never gets caught on loose strings hanging at the seams. Believe me, when you’re rushing to find your lip gloss in a crowded Tokyo intersection a sturdy zipper really helps!

Here in Los Angeles, I don’t see many people using these type of small, utilitarian bags. I have a feeling it’s because we keep all our stuff sprawled out in the backseat of our car. In Tokyo, however, you’re dependent on public transportation, so it’s hard to stay fresh as roses when you’re cooped up in a musty commuter train, especially in the dead of summer. That’s why the ‘freshen-up pouch’ is a girl’s best friend.

Designer Shinzi Katoh also has a bunch of cute little bags. Check them out! I know you want one~! \(^o^)/

Himawari

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Thinking of doing business in Japan? We can make it easy for you!
japanizmo, a Los Angeles based company, provides practical solutions for U.S. ? Japan business projects. Our experienced Japanese staff will support all phases of your business project to seize business opportunities and turn your vision into a reality. >> Learn more

June 30, 2010 at 3:58 pm Leave a comment

Fasten on the Chocolate

Lately, I’ve been reading about some odd chocolate pairings with sea salt, bacon and even wasabi. But how about chocolate with a touch of cubic zirconia?:

I’m drooling over my keyboard just looking at this picture — the perfect combination of cute and addicting. \(^o^)/

Former fashion model Tadaaki Wakamatsu began creating these mouthwatering jewelry pieces back in 2000 just to keep people smiling through the Y2K economic slump. His company, Q-pot, has since surfaced in high-fashion boutiques and department stores. It sounds strange to mesh food with fashion, but in the land of talking peanuts does it really seem so far-fetched?:

iPhone Chocolate Bar Case

Biscuit keychain

Strawberry cake pendant

Q-pot has been making blogosphere headlines through their fanciful collaborations with Disney, French sweets company Fauchon and Tim Burton’s “Alice in Wonderland.” Who would’ve thought that fashion-form desserts would be such a lucrative business. Just shows that anything is possible!

Himawari

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Thinking of doing business in Japan? We can make it easy for you!
japanizmo, a Los Angeles based company, provides practical solutions for U.S. ? Japan business projects. Our experienced Japanese staff will support all phases of your business project to seize business opportunities and turn your vision into a reality. >> Learn more

May 26, 2010 at 4:35 pm Leave a comment

A Sock for All Occasions

Japanese socks are a gift from fashion heaven. Not only are they puppy-dog cute, scientists have figured out ways to make socks highly-functional — absorbing sweat, softening skin and keeping you from slipping on your butt. It’s amazing!:

Anti-slip Socks

The bumps on these socks aren’t just for decoration. They’re there to keep you from crashing and burning as you race your brother across mom’s waxy kitchen floor. They’re anti-slip socks, which in Japan are important since so many houses have hardwood flooring and steep wooden staircases. Made from polyurethane material, these pedi-loafers will always keep you standing.

Anti-bloating Socks

Sexy calves! That’s the promise this product makes. Here in the U.S. it doesn’t seem as much of a concern, but in Japan most girls are aware that high-heels and cold weather will bloat your legs beyond the point of recognition. These sleek black socks use the circulation-stimulating germanium (the mineral, not a flower) to help slim them back to shape.

Ankle-warming Socks

Only one pair to keep you warm? Throw on another! Made of 100% silk, this hot number can be pulled up to your knees or scrunched to your ankles. Either way, you’re looking cute there.

Heel-softening Socks

For those who suffer from ashy skin, here’s the sock for you. Dual-layer technology keeps your feet nice and toasty while preventing unnecessary abrasion. They’re a little thicker than the rest, but softer feet I’ll risk the shame. Sock it to me! \(^o^)/

Himawari

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Thinking of doing business in Japan? We can make it easy for you!
japanizmo, a Los Angeles based company, provides practical solutions for U.S. ? Japan business projects. Our experienced Japanese staff will support all phases of your business project to seize business opportunities and turn your vision into a reality. >> Learn more

January 26, 2010 at 3:40 pm Leave a comment

The Miracle Tool

Beautiful ladies of the world, all your dreams have come true with one product: the Twin Elenizer PRO!

The name is a mouthful, but the gadget gets to the source of your skin worries. Just press it against your face and – through the power of ions and ultra-sound waves – your skin will turn pearly smooth.

Priced at $250, the Twin Elenizer is one of Rakuten’s top-selling items. I found it while searching for Japanese skin creams. Lately, I’ve been a little worried because the sun spots I developed over the summer haven’t gone away. And I swear my cheeks are giving way to gravity. Age has something to do with it. So now I’m on a mission to restore my once blemish-free skin.

According to the site, ion-fused pulses help restore the skin’s elasticity and cleans out dirty pores. The ultra-sound waves make it easier (140 times more effective, to be exact) for skin to absorb all the expensive creams you put on your face. The gadget comes with bottles of collagen and vitamin C to get you started.

So does it really work? I don’t know. Japanese companies come out with extraordinary products like this all the time. Some end up thrown in the ‘fad’ bin, while others stand the test of time.

Maybe after my next paycheck I’ll place an order. If anyone beats me to it, email me your thoughts!

Himawari

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Thinking of doing business in Japan? We can make it easy for you!
japanizmo, a Los Angeles based company, provides practical solutions for U.S. ? Japan business projects. Our experienced Japanese staff will support all phases of your business project to seize business opportunities and turn your vision into a reality. >> Learn more

December 15, 2009 at 5:46 pm Leave a comment

Sexy Paper for Humid Days

If you want a successful drugstore product, leave it to heartthrob Takuya Kimura to sell it. He’ll not only rub it in his hair, he’ll massage it on his face, and splash his body with it, too.

Part sexy, part odd, Kimura’s TV commerical appearances have left a heavy impression on consumers not only in Japan but throughout Asia. Look on Youtube and you’ll find dozens of fans attempting miserably to mimic his unconventional moves.

Kimura’s most recent commerical series has him estatically wiping his chest down with ‘Gatsby body paper.’ No, it’s not the center-page of a classy novel. It’s a disposable cloth dampened with deoderant/anti-persperant powder and dabbed with a touch of citrus. People living in dry regions wouldn’t need it, but in hot, humid regions like Japan, it’s a lifesaving product. Imagine sitting in a crowded meeting room with no air conditioning in the middle of summer. In no time, sweat starts pouring from your forehead, armpits, back and the only thing you have is a tissue. item_spaper01No matter how hot it is, with Gatsby body paper you’ll feel fresh and clean throughout the day. I’ve used a female version of the product and was amazed by how cool my skin felt, the drawback being that your skin tastes bitter from the powder (Yes, I lick myself sometimes).

It’s a strange concept to apply deoderant powder over your entire body, but thankfully, the scent isn’t nearly as strong as a stick of Teen Spirit. So wipe to your heart’s content.


Meanwhile, young Japan is abuzz with Gatsby body paper. Watching this video of Kimura with some high school baseball players, how can you not go out and try it yourself?:

Himawari

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July 15, 2009 at 10:33 am Leave a comment

Want Smooth Skin? No Need to Inject Collagen – Just Eat It

As kids we’re told that eating too much chocolate or potato chips will give us breakouts. But is it possible to eat your way to better skin?

Japanese organic cosmetics company Fancl seems to think so. That’s why they’ve partnered with Ito-Yokado, the ubiquitous grocery superstore, to create a series of collagen-infused foods. Yes, collagen – the lip plumper and wrinkle reducer normally available only at a plastic surgeon’s or dermatologist’s office.

fancl-cheesecake

Fancl’s food line is also enhanced with kale extract, known for reducing weight.

The whole thing reminds me of Jamba Juice and their boosts. I never know which supplement to add to my smoothie: Protein? Vitamin C to fight off a cold? How about calcium or fiber? It’s probably a placebo effect – just knowing that I’m eating fruit, lowfat yogurt and vitamins tends to make me feel great. (Let’s not discuss the sugar.)

sp5

But back to botox. Japanese women really value perfect skin, so it makes sense that they pop supplement pills or drink collagen elixirs. Fancl has simply taken the ball and run with it, infusing bread and sweets with life-enhancing additives.

sp3

Do people really believe that eating make-up can make them over from the inside out?

Apparently yes – who am I to argue with Oprah?

Sarah S.

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Thinking of doing business in Japan? We can make it easy for you!
japanizmo, a Los Angeles based company, provides practical solutions for U.S. ? Japan business projects. Our experienced Japanese staff will support all phases of your business project to seize business opportunities and turn your vision into a reality. >> Learn more
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February 3, 2009 at 12:51 pm Leave a comment

Massage Therapy is on Every Corner

Ever thought of hiring a personal masseuse?

Well, unless you’re loaded, you probably can’t afford one. So what’s the next best thing? How about a massage shop on every corner?

Okay, maybe not be as abundant as Starbucks, but shops catering to soothing the knots of a stressful work day are only steps away; in a department store or along a busy shopping arcade, even at the airport. No need to reserve, all you do is walk in and within minutes you’ll be kneaded like putty.

Hour-long sessions are about 6,000 yen, which comes out to 95 cents a minute. Not exactly chump change, but still affordable. Back in the day when my Tokyo dorm rent was only $100 monthly (I miss being a student), I’d treat myself to a massage nearly every week. Especially when winter came around, I’d mentally write off massages as a necessary expense for my health. Regular visits boost circulation and keep you warm.

Massage shops fit a particular category called iyashi-kei — that which heals the body and mind. Certain music can be considered iyashi-kei if it rejuvenates you, as can certain food if it comforts you. Even certain celebrities are iyashi-kei if, just with a glance at their image, can turn angry men into teddy bears. Like I’ve mentioned before, Japan is a high-stress society, so people will pay top yen to take a load off.

Next time you visit Japan, stop by a massage shop. It’s a whole new experience, far better than what you can get in the U.S. You’ll experience customer service at its best and you don’t even have to leave tip! (^D^)/

Himawari

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Thinking of doing business in Japan? We can make it easy for you!
JPBizDirect, a Los Angeles based company, provides practical solutions for U.S. ? Japan business projects. Our experienced Japanese staff will support all phases of your business project to seize business opportunities and turn your vision into a reality. >> Learn more
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July 29, 2008 at 1:32 pm 1 comment

Beating the Heat

Japan gets nasty-hot in the summer. It’s the kind of heat that wakes you up at night, soaking your shirt in a most embarrassing way. It’s the kind of heat that makes you wanna live in an igloo. During the summer I’d remove any piece of furniture that bumped up the thermometer even one degree. So out went the fridge, computer and feather blanket. They stayed in the kitchen until winter.

At night, I set aside fear of robbers and kept ajar the sliding balcony door. Then over the course of eight hours I slowly edged my way outside where by morning I was in the company of curious birds coming to poop on me.

These days it’s much easier to stay cool. How bout an icy gel mattress? Or doggie-shaped feet coolers? Take a look for yourself:




I found these items on the Tokyu Hands website. It’s one of my favorite department stores in Japan because they sell useful household goods both creative and cute. For the ice mattress (~$150) all you have to do is place it under your fitted sheet. The pillow costs an extra $50. The feet coolers are only $12. Wrap the elastic band around the arch of your foot and watch as it cools down your body. For a quick fix, try the ‘cool skin bar’ for just under 10 bucks. Glide it onto your skin for a nice cooling sensation.

Unlike on the U.S. west coast, Japan’s heat is humid and sticky. So you can emerge from the shower and five minutes later need another one. It’s the most uncomfortable thing for those with overactive glands. On the other hand, the heat is a godsend if you suffer from chapped lips. Nothing stays dry in Japan.



By far, my favorite product for beating the heat is Biore’s ‘sara-sara‘ (soft and smooth) powder sheet pack. The moist sheet is coated with scented antiperspirant powder. Wipe it over troublesome parts of your body and you’ll magically stop sweating. Though the one drawback is that if someone tries kissing you on the cheek, they’ll be utterly grossed out because you’ll taste bitter. No one said antiperspirant tasted good.

Himawari

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Thinking of doing business in Japan? We can make it easy for you!

JPBizDirect, a Los Angeles based company, provides practical solutions for U.S. ? Japan business projects. Our experienced Japanese staff will support all phases of your business project to seize business opportunities and turn your vision into a reality. >> Learn more

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July 15, 2008 at 5:50 pm 1 comment

Jewelry Designer Yoshi Beautifully Combines Japanese and U.S. Style

Last week I was excited to sit down with jewelry designer Yoshi, a warm, creative and stylish Japanese woman who has made a name for herself in Japan and recently decided to introduce her work to an American audience. Though pearls might be considered her signature stone, she also uses diamonds, rubies, sapphires and gold (pink, yellow and white), sometimes combined with amber, onyx or jade, to invoke color and light.

Yoshi grew up in Tokyo, but came to the U.S. to develop her new career and receive a degree in gemology from the prestigious Gemological Institute of America. She also studied English and history at UCLA. Now she lives in Santa Monica, California, but frequently travels back to Japan, where people are delighted by her shock of blonde hair and beautiful accessories. In fact, people constantly approach her to ask where she got her jewelry.

On the day I met Yoshi, she was wearing a dark silver pearl necklace over a crisp white blouse, a black jacket with black velvet flower prints on the collar, red-framed glasses and to-die-for rings (one diamond, one black jade and cat’s eye). I wanted to steal every item!
Yoshi loves combining U.S. and Japanese cultures in one outfit. When she worked in Beverly Hills as a beauty consultant, she would wear the top half of a kimono and discard the bottom half.

Each of her designs is exclusive and personal. If you bring her an heirloom, she can even arrange it into a fresh piece. She meets with clients one-on-one to determine what type and style of jewelry works best for them individually.

“In Japan,” she laughs, “they tell me to decide for them! So I usually bring them three choices and let them choose. In the U.S., they usually have some idea of what they’re looking for.” She has a quick, keen ability to match people with jewelry that complements their looks and personalities.

Bringing Maki-e Back

Yoshi has updated maki-e jewelry while keeping what defines it — the exquisitely detailed and delicate style — in tact. Maki-e is unique to Japan and has been around since the Nara Period (710 –794).On top of lacquer, artists paint with gold, silver or platinum dust to create colorful, eye-catching images. Traditionally seen on bowls, Buddhist altars, etc., the use and ownership of these luxury items were limited to Court Nobles and Samurai. Today you can find maki-e on watches, fountain pens, beautiful plates and more, and with Yoshi’s innovations you can wear the style as a necklace.

Yoshi, who loves to challenge herself, sought out maki-e makers in Japan and added her own personal touch: small, diamond-encrusted frames and simple but beautiful chains.
She is dedicated to using only the highest quality materials and will travel the world to find them. Some of her stones are cut in Idar-Oberstein, the gem capital of Germany.

With Yoshi’s designs, you get the best of traditional Japanese artwork merged with modern elegance. Two cultures and styles join together to create jewelry that is special and one-of-a-kind — just like Yoshi herself.

Sarah S.

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Thinking of doing business in Japan? We can make it easy for you!
JPBizDirect, a Los Angeles based company, provides practical solutions for U.S. ? Japan business projects. Our experienced Japanese staff will support all phases of your business project to seize business opportunities and turn your vision into a reality. >> Learn more
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May 1, 2008 at 3:12 pm Leave a comment

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