from Japan

Chika Teramoto Embraces the Grown-Up Look with Sheer Elegance

Chika Teramoto Cosmetic buyer for Matsuya department store in Ginza, Tokyo



Chika Teramoto is a cosmetic buyer for Matsuya department store in Ginza, Tokyo, where she tests over one hundred lipsticks and fifty different types of base makeup a year. She is also a self-professed nail enthusiast, and regularly does her own nails.

Forget the Status-Quo

Yasuo Today, we’re at Matsuya, where I’m going to be interviewing Chika while demonstrating some makeup techniques. Do you have any concerns about using makeup on a daily basis? 

Chika Yes, so many. My pores and blemishes really bother me, and my face is definitely not symmetrical. I’m also insecure about my wide nose and shape of my lips. 

Yasuo Wow, that’s a lot. 

Chika I know, but women that have such complexities are often much more alluring. I feel like it’s alright to have insecurities, so long as I am living purely and earnestly. 

Yasuo I understand what you’re saying, but it’s good to think about overcoming these issues. Once you let natural processes and imperfections bother you, it’s hard to see how special you are. The important thing is to learn how to love yourself regardless of what comes your way. 

Chika Self-love is the solution?

Yasuo Self-acceptance.  You have to learn to embrace yourself and recognize that beauty standards are entirely fabricated ideas. If you pay too much attention to them, then you lose sight of all of your unique qualities.

Chika I think everyone feels victimized by beauty standards. 

Yasuo Well, no one’s face is completely symmetrical. You can make it look more aligned with makeup tricks. It’s important to know though that imperfections add to your character and appeal. 

Chika I know. I need to get over it!

Yasuo It’s the same thing with aging. If you try to deny it and hide yourself behind layers of makeup, you end up looking like you’re wearing a mask, and you end up just feeling horrible. You may not notice it, but every day is a new day with many changes. Every five years or so, these personal and physical evolutions become more apparent to us. You need to look at yourself with a fresh eye every now and again, accept these changes, and have fun with it.

Red-y To Explore

Yasuo Uneven skin becomes more prominent with age. Some people believe this to be a negative thing. 

Chika I generally hide all of my imperfections with concealer before applying more makeup. 

Yasuo Instead of thinking of imperfections as things that should be hidden, I focus on trying to enhance them. It’s good to take advantage of what you’ve been given! For instance, if your lips are a little darker in color, just add a hint of red for more wine colored lips. 

Chika Although I love the colors, I never use red or bordeaux shades on my lips. I love Christian Louboutin’s red, it’s such a gorgeous color.  

Yasuo Did you know that deep-red is made through an aging process? 

Chika That must be why the color has such a grown-up appeal.

Yasuo A lot of people will put on concealers and then apply color, but that approach can make you look way too heavily made up. It’s better to apply color to your natural skin shade and let that come through. It’s much sexier. For example, your eyelids are a little red, so I’m going to put reddish gold on your eyes to compliment your natural coloring. 

Chika Will that work well on my flat eyes? 

Yasuo Don’t worry, if you use a soft brush, then it looks very natural. You just use a hint of color then blend it in. When it comes to eye makeup, it’s all about the brush that you use. For example, applying a hard brush close to your lashes helps enhance definition. It’s an easy trick that makes a big difference! Now, moving on to your lips…

Chika I’ve hated my lips ever since I was little. I only use more neutral colors because of it. Right now, I love Christian Louboutin’s Loubilaque gloss in beige shades. 

Yasuo That’s a great color. Would you mind trying red today? We won’t make it look too harsh. 

Chika Sure. I’ve tried it many times, but only in the privacy of my home. I want to make it work because it’s so trendy, but it never looks good on me. Can I tell you if I don’t like it? 

Yasuo Of course! This one by Saint Laurent is very sheer. It’s more like a lip stain because of its watery base. It will blend in really naturally with your lip color if you apply a little on the top and bottom lips and blend with an eyeshadow brush. 

Chika I’ve never heard of this technique before, but it does make my lips look really healthy and full without being overly dramatic. 

Yasuo Now, you just put some shiny gloss on top, and it looks like you have baby lips!

Chika Ah, I love it! Thank you so much!

Keep It Simple and Sweet

Chika I don’t normally use these colors, but I really like what you’ve done with them. 

Yasuo That’s because I’m applying them quite sheerly, so they look more natural. 

Chika I didn’t know all of these would look good on me. Do you ever do shading or contouring? 

Yasuo No, I prefer a skin’s natural luminosity. That way, when the light hits your face, highlights are organically created. When you create gradation with makeup, it can look very obviously constructed and drawn on. 

Chika Ah, I see. I normally can only see myself straight on, so it’s good to think about the side angles as well. 

Yasuo People see you not only from the front, but also the sides and top of your head. It’s good to double check how you look from all angles. I really love your hair cut.  It frames your face quite nicely. 

Chika Thank you, I’m really into my hair! I have a close relationship with my stylist. 

Yasuo You know what looks good on you. 

Chika Oh, thank you.

Yasuo Don’t overdo your makeup! I cannot emphasize enough how a little goes a long way—aim for more sheer and natural looks. You don’t want to look too heavily made up. 

Chika Your makeover today was an eye opener. I feel like I’ve learned so many new techniques, and really understand why I need to be more self-accepting. My outlook on beauty has definitely shifted a bit.  


Location / Event sponsorship:Matsuya department store in Ginza

Event sponsorship:OTEKOMACHI

Photos / Interview :  Yasuo Yoshikawa

Text :  Mikako Koyama