Monday, December 18, 2006

Makeup advertising campaigns: Aube, T'estimo, Esprique Precious

Sofina's Aube, Kanebo's T'estimo makeup lines have been relaunched recently and Kose just launched their new line Esprique Precious (not to be confused with Esprique Select).

Rinka, currently a quite popular model and TV personality in Japan, is the spokesmodel for Aube's relaunch. She looks good in the ads - in particular her skin looks perfect - but the hair styling is a little unnatural in the photos for the pink look. They used the purple and pink eye shadow palettes for the photos. The colors don't really appeal to me but they look pretty good on her. I'm still not sold on the purple though.

The actress Asami Mizukawa is the face of T'estimo's relaunch. I don't like the makeup they put on her. The shimmer and colors just doesn't suit. She's super pretty so I think it's just the color selection that I have an issue with. I've seen her in all of the new palettes and I don't think I liked any of them on her!

The supermodel Gemma Ward is the face of Esprique Precious, the catch phrase for which is "おとな。 but カワイイ," which translates into "grown-up. but cute." I'm guessing she's the most expensive of the spokesmodels for these campaigns, since she's internationally famous, but who know? Heh. For some reason, I really don't like the makeup they put on her. She's gorgeous but the colors seem to kind of wash her out, although they do bring out her grey-blue eyes. They should have gone with lighter lip colors. The pink is a bit too heavy on her. You may be unsurprised that the whole concept of the line is of little interest to me.

Maybe the problem is just that I don't like salmon pinkish colors. But other pinks look absolutely gorgeous - the magazine bea's Up this month has lovely layouts of a myriad of pretty pink lip colors - so I don't think that's the issue.

So far, I like the winter ad campain for Shiseido's Majolica Majorca line the best. Pretty and well done. The lip colors don't appeal to me, but they suit the model perfectly. The makeup for Chanel's Spring campaign is stunning though. Strong impact and looks great on the model. The model for Jill Stuart Spring also looks beautiful.


Nobi said...

After almost 20 years since I left Tokyo, and hearing about many advances and changes in society, I cannot believe they are still using a white blond model for their cosmetic campaign - I'm taking about Esprique Precious, by the way.

OK, Gemma Ward is カワイイ. Well, she's not just cute but has a strange charm that tickles middle-aged men's fantasy. But come on, do they expect their consumers to buy something that pleases middle-aged Japanese men?? I suppose middle-aged men are the farthest thing that young Japanese women care about... or maybe I'm wrong.

Anyway this is not the first time the Japanese art direction screwed up the interesting features of a supermodel. I often find the makeup on white models in Japanese magazines strange and think Japanese makeup artists need to take a serious sculpture course at art school.

kuri said...

Yeah, I find it a little annoying that a lot of the department stores still like to use less than attractive Caucasian models too. Although there are a couple boutiques who have awesome posters, the dept. stores usually seem to have subpar work. I don't really mind Kose's choice of Gemma Ward though, because she is beautiful. It only annoys me if they could have found a better model if they weren't constraining themselves to one set of physical characteristics.

I find Gemma Ward very striking, in a doll-like way. Judging from the popularity of cosmetics brands that are packaged in a very cute and feminine manner, I'd expect her cute, gamine image to appeal to young Japanese women too, not just the middle-aged Japanese men. I should ask around though. I don't even have anecdotal evidence; it's just my opinion :) Maybe she does appeal most to the middle-aged men.

But I'm glad you agree about the art direction! I find it really bizarre; I thought supermodels were hard to mess up. Wasn't too impressed with Shiseido's Integrate campaign with Angelina Jolie either. However, Cameron Diaz looks fabulous in Softbank Mobile's print and TV ads, so that art director had no problems!

A sculpture course would probably be very educational.

Nobi said...

Oops, 'l' was missing from "I'm ta(l)king about..." in the first paragraph. Sorry!

I am surprised that there's still demand for "less than attractive Caucasian models" in Japan. On the other hand, I find many nice ads using Japanese models (not ハーフs but 100% Japanese) which I had never seen when I was in Japan.

I'm so 中年 (middle-aged) that I couldn't even imagine Gemma Ward would appeal to young women, but I think you are right. Otherwise Kose would never have used her in the first place.

kuri said...

Sorry about the late reply! Still tired from travelling.

The demand still seems pretty big for "less than attractive Caucasian models;" (to be fair, they're attractive, but I know more attractive people :D), although I don't know if it's the consumers demanding it or the advertising companies thinking they want it. Shiseido definitely thinks otherwise, judging from the recent "Japanese women are beautiful" campaign for their new shampoo.

I'm surprised to hear that there wasn't always as many Japanese models as there are now. It's good to hear that there's been improvement.