Introduction of Shiseido Hair & Makeup Artists: Their Work and History
There are more than forty Hair & Makeup Artists (HMA) in Shiseido. It is rare to find such a high number in a cosmetic company, even outside of Japan. To explain why there are so many, we must first look back on Shiseido’s beauty research history.
- The beginning
In 1953, the Biyo Kenkyujyo (Beauty Research Center) was established to give advanced beauty lectures to Shiseido chain stores in Japan. Later, the name was changed to Biyo Gijyutsu Kenkyujyo (Shiseido Beauty Techniques Research Center) as it became a center specialized in the research of beauty techniques. After going through many names, the center settled on its present name, Beauty Creation Center.
- In pursuit of beauty and techniques
Not only has Shiseido developed products for almost half a century, it has also conducted research on product usage and beauty looks. The results of this work can be seen in posters, TV commercials, HANATSUBAKI booklets, materials for perfume counters, etc. At the center of these creations, there have always been beauty technicians (now known as HMAs).
- Fostering HMAs
In 1959, six years after establishing the Beauty Research Center, Shiseido created the Shiseido Beauty Academy to foster the development of beauty technicians. Later in 1986, it established the Shiseido Academy of Beauty and Fashion (SABFA), known as a kind of graduate school for beauty technicians in pursuit of mastering the most advanced techniques. Shiseido has been fostering artists with high levels of beauty sense and techniques since long before the work of hair & makeup artists in Japan was categorized.
- The rise of beauty professionals
From the graduates of the Beauty Academy and SABFA, Shiseido started to hire HMAs. Gradually their numbers increased, as did the quality of their techniques. In 1977, Shiseido produced an epoch-making fashion show in Japan called Rokunin no Paris (The Paris Six), inviting six fashion designers from Paris to participate. This show is the reason why HMAs became involved in the Paris collection. For over 40 years, HMAs have been dispatched to the Paris collection and now also take part backstage at the New York and Tokyo collections.
- Beauty creation using techniques and a sense for beauty
There are more than forty HMAs in the Shiseido Beauty Creation Center working actively in beauty creation: developing Shiseido advertising, working backstage at fashion shows, giving seminars for the beauty & hair industry, etc. Through their work, they encounter a number of artists, designers, and celebrities, many who ask to work with them. Some have even recently started collaborating with artists in modern and traditional Japanese art. Their field of work is broadening day by day.