By Fay O’Sullivan

I have very few regrets about my trip to Japan. It was meticulously planned and I definitely made the most of every second we were there. By the end of the trip though, I still couldn’t get my head around how much 1,000Y was worth and had an irrational fear of running out of money and not being able to catch the train back to the airport. Because of this, I was probably a little more frugal than I needed to be.


I love all things beauty related and could bore you with my new found love of BB creams and my seemingly endless search for the perfect coral lipstick. I did spend time wandering around the beauty halls of Matsuya and Mitsukoshi (huge department stores) in Ginza but for some reason, couldn’t bring myself to splurge. Now thankfully, I don’t have to head to Japan or pay extortionate postage as a piece of prestigious Japanese beauty history is available right here in Newcastle. Boots in Eldon Square has recently acquired a Shiseido beauty counter.



Shiseido, founded by Arinobu Fukuhara in 1872, was Japan’s first western style pharmacy based in Ginza, Tokyo where its head office still remains today. The company name means ‘Praise the virtues of the earth which nurtures life and brings forth significant values’ and comes from the Chinese Book of changes. According to the company website, it represents the “blend of Western science and Eastern wisdom which has always been the cornerstone” of the company.


Shiseido is the oldest and fourth largest cosmetics company in the world and has a presence in 88 countries with over 30,000 employees. It sells a wide range of makeup, skin and body care and the science and research behind its products make them some of the most sought after (read: expensive) available. The company also owns Bare Minerals (available in Newcastle at Fenwick and John Lewis) and NARS (available from Space NK on Grainger Street).



It is slightly on the expensive side – £20 for an eye shadow, £21 for lipstick – but for a special treat, I’m sure you could persuade someone to buy it for you!


One comment on “

  1. I love it! Japan was the most amazing place I have ever been. Totally worth the 21 hour solo flight around the world and $4,000 credit card debt that took almost a year to pay off (I underestimated the value of the yen vs. the U.S. dollar- oops). I just wrote an entry of some of my favorite things about Japan last summer. Here is the link if you want to check it out:


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