For residents of almost all other countries, Japan is a completely different, exotic and wonderful world with its own traditions, rules of life and behavior, aesthetic views and standards of self-care that are different even from neighboring China and Korea. Japanese culture and Japanese way of life are rooted in hoary antiquity, but are not forgotten and have a huge impact on the daily existence of ordinary Japanese – a much greater influence than ours or European “antiquity” on us and other inhabitants of the Old World.
Japan is an island nation located in the Pacific Ocean to the east of China, Korea and Russia. Four islands account for 97 percent of the country’s land area: Honshu, Hokkaido, Kyushu and Shikokuyu, although the entire Japanese archipelago includes 6,852 islands. The country has many mountains, many islands of volcanic origin, so Japan is very rich in a variety of mineral springs.
Despite its modest size (374,744 sq. Km) and the lack of minerals, the country is one of the great economic powers, ranking third in the world in terms of nominal GDP and fourth in terms of purchasing power parity, which indicates a very high standard of living. Due to its economic power, based on developments in the field of high technologies, Japan is included in the Big Seven and APEC, and is regularly elected a member of the UN Security Council.
This is the tenth place in the world, that is, the population density is enormous. Land and real estate prices are sky-high. “Greater Tokyo” – the capital of the country and several nearby prefectures – has over 30 million inhabitants and is the largest metropolitan area in the world. A high standard of living, excellent medical care and a number of ancient traditions in society (in the field of nutrition, exercise and general behavior) are the reason that the Japanese live much longer than the inhabitants of other countries. The average life expectancy is over 85–88 years.
Narrow specialization and small offices
In the Land of the Rising Sun, it is customary to clearly divide the enterprises of the beauty industry. Separate hairdressing salons, separate nail service, separate sports clubs, separate beauty salons, in which anesthetists work, and completely separate clinics of aesthetic medicine.
Many salons are very small in area, 40-50 sq. m. Approximately 80 percent of the beauty industry enterprises are officially located in converted apartments. On the surface, you will never say that someone works here. In the Japanese “beautiful” business, bright signs and shop windows are not accepted. Clients select a salon for themselves through a well-established word of mouth or via the Internet.
The interiors of the salons seem immensely modest to Russians: the Japanese emphasize service, not interior. It is no coincidence that there is even such a style – Japanese minimalism. He dominates the decoration of enterprises in the beauty industry. Domestic specialists of the “beautiful” business who were in Japan came up with the following formula: a Japanese salon of 5 stars looks like our average 4. The colors are calm. There is almost no décor.
But everything is very functional and convenient. The reason for the small offices in aesthetic salons is the high cost of real estate. At mid-level enterprises, a relatively large room is often divided by thick curtains into compartments, in which the craftsmen work. More or less large rooms can only be found in super expensive tourist spas.
The Japanese are highly suspicious of skin disorders. This is considered a very serious intervention. By the way, surgery, in principle, has never been a strong link in traditional Japanese medicine. This is partly why aesthetic beauty salons and clinics of aesthetic medicine are strictly separated. In the salons, injections are not practiced,.
peels are not carried out, there is no serious equipment that we are used to (of the hardware methods, only the simplest and on portable equipment are presented: microcurrents, ultrasonic cleaning and massage, electroporation). And why is it? After all, Japanese anesthetists are brilliant professionals in the field of manual techniques, especially a variety of massages.
Face and body massages are the most demanded services in Japanese beauty salons. A couple of thousand years ago, they became part of ancient folk medicine and traditional face and body treatments. In recent years, Thai and Korean methods have been gaining popularity. At the same time, Japanese massages are shorter than those accepted in our country, and the spa services themselves are very modest and simple in comparison with Russian ones. The Japanese do not like chocolate or seaweed wraps. After oil massage or salt peeling, the client is left to lie down – that’s all. A variety of face masks are also practiced.
Most of all, the Japanese are concerned about two aesthetic problems: pigmentation and age-related changes. The first has been fought for more than a thousand years, because the Japanese aesthetic ideal requires a woman to have a porcelain even whiteness of her face and neck. Previously, this was achieved using a huge amount of rice powder.
In the modern world, the vast majority of Japanese women do not wear traditional makeup that completely hides their natural face. But the desire for the whiteness of the skin remained. Alas, it is extremely difficult for Japanese women to achieve the ideal without powder, since their skin is prone to early deep and clearly visible pigmentation. Hence the demand for whitening cosmetics and related procedures. Long life and a high percentage of elderly people in society have led to a high demand for anti-age services.