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3 posts tagged "Shiseido"

Japan: An Update From Tokyo

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It has of course been an intense few days here in Japan since Friday’s earthquake set off a series of devastating events. After a weekend of feeling helpless, and mental and emotional shock from marathon updates from TV news, Twitter, Facebook, and NikoNikoDouga, today Tokyo residents attempted to get back to the Monday grind. Small but constant aftershocks, limited train schedules, and electricity blackouts constantly remind us of our neighbors at the epicenter. Some boutiques around Harajuku and Omotesando were closed today, as were press offices. Still, it was a beautiful day here, and felt eerily normal for the most part.

Throughout the day there were disaster relief announcements by the fashion and beauty community: Uniqlo and its employees plan on donating 1.4 billion yen (more than $17 million), including a personal donation of 1 billion yen by chairman and CEO Tadashi Yanai, as well as 700 million yen (around $8.6 million) in clothing. Beauty giant Shiseido will donate 100 million yen (around $1.2 million) along with supplies like hand soap and waterless shampoo. Art director Kaie Murakami, who designs Japanese sites for Louis Vuitton and Pucci, quickly pulled together Save Japan, a Web site that categorizes rescue and help call information by prefecture in 11 different languages.

Companies like H&M, which closed ten stores on Saturday (its Ginza flagship is at left), are assessing the situation and do not know what the long-term effect will be. Mie Anton, PR manager of H&M, has been working nonstop since the incident: “This disaster has of course affected all of us in Japan, including H&M. We have opened up four city stores today with limited hours. We have turned off billboard lights, window display lights, and limited store lights for operation.”

Earlier this evening, Japan Fashion Week announced that it will soon update the media on the fate of the fashion week scheduled to take place March 21-25. They have already canceled several events, including the official closing party, “Japan Fashion Festival,” at Le Baron. Marc by Marc Jacobs canceled a tenth anniversary event, and the company plans to make donations to Red Cross Japan. The company’s stores are closing two hours early to conserve energy. “It’s almost as if nothing happened here in Tokyo. One can’t help fretting,” Martin Webb, Marc Jacobs’ head of marketing and communications said, echoing the sentiments of many others. “Will the people of Fukushima get radiation poisoning? Will there be another quake somewhere?”

As some struggle to return to normal, uncertainty about the most appropriate course of action lingers. “There was some Twitter bashing when I uploaded a street snap,” said Daisuke Yokota, editor in chief of the popular street style site Droptokyo.jp.

Photo: Junko Kimura / Getty Images

The Goody Bag: Alive And Well

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We were convinced the goody bag had gone the way of cheap credit, but we were wrong. At last night’s party in a West Village studio, RxArt unveiled its newest charitable puzzle by Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama, but what really had people talking were the pricey gift bags courtesy of Shiseido and their new Future Solution LX line for fall. “The bag is worth like $500!” said one PR. In fact, a little price check reveals that the retail value totals $665.

The contents:

Five ounces of Concentrated Balancing Softener: $90

4.7 ounces of Extra Rich Cleansing Foam (that’s face wash, if you forgot): $55

1.8 ounces of Daytime Protective Cream SPF 15: $240

1.7 ounces of the Total Regenerating Cream: $260

One custom wooden container: price N/A

RxArt’s artist coloring book Between the Lines: $20 online, with proceeds benefitting RxArt’s cause

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Two questions: Does this mean the recession is over? And just how much of Future Solution will end up on eBay by tonight?

Photo: Courtesy of Shiseido

Let the Games Begin

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“I haven’t done a puzzle since I was 13,” Jason Wu confessed last night at Shiseido’s RxArt party for Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama’s jigsaw puzzle and its own new Future Solution LX skincare line. “I’m definitely going to buy one. But knowing me, I’ll toss everything else aside until I finish it!” At least the missed work day will be for a good cause. Sales of the 200-piece puzzle, which features Kusama’s Self-Portrait (2008), will benefit RxArt’s program to engage hospital patients with contemporary art. (Aptly, the 80-year-old artist currently lives—by choice—in a Tokyo mental institution.) Kusama skipped the party, but quite a crowd turned up at the airy West Village space to celebrate, including Lauren Santo Domingo, Olivier Zahm and André Saraiva, Terry Richardson, and the party perennials of the downtown cool set, Sophomore’s Chrissie Miller, Jen Brill, and Nate Lowman, who split DJ duties with Leo Fitzpatrick for the night.

The rub with puzzles, of course, is finding the time to complete them. Vena Cava’s Lisa Mayock, who recently moved the line’s offices from Brooklyn to Manhattan, was glad the party’s nearby location gave her a few minutes to admire Kusama’s self-portrait. Daphne Guinness professed to being a fan, too, but the heiress/designer/muse may be a little busy for puzzling: “I live in New York now, but I’m basically flying all the time for work.” But with cold weather coming, a good puzzle may be just the rationale a party girl needs for a night at home. Opening Ceremony’s Carol Lim agreed. “I’m going to take up puzzles again,” she said. “It’s the perfect excuse for staying in.”