Expert Advice

International Beauty Forum: Creative, Colorful Mannequin Work

Alison Alhamed | October 28, 2013 | 11:20 AM
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While on the Pivot Point International study abroad program to Tokyo, Japan, our group had the absolute pleasure of meeting Jane Aiko Yamano, the owner of the Yamano beauty empire that her grandmother, Aiko Yamano, began in 1925 when she opened the first Yamano Hair Salon. We learned that Aiko was instrumental in introducing the perm wave machines to Japan in the 1930s (there is still an original on campus!), and founded the Yamano Beauty College in 1949.

Jane has followed her grandmother’s mission and vision of raising the next generation of cosmetology students and of preserving the Japanese tradition of Kimono dressing, tea ceremony and flower arrangement by making it a part of the curriculum for students.

Through a conversation with Mike Yamano, Jane’s father, we learned of his particular interest in the aging population of Japan—taking note that Japanese families are opting to have fewer children which has resulted in an abundance of aging people in the country. As such, a focus has been placed on caring for seniors—and the Beauty and Welfare elective course in the Yamano schools teaches students how to operate wheelchairs, cut while a client lays down, and shampoo the hair using tools and technology that caters to the aging population.

Mike also explained that when people dress nicely and are groomed, their health improves—rather than staying in pajamas in a bed which can deteriorate confidence and mental health.


THE DETAILS: While we were in Japan, we were fortunate enough to get the opportunity to attend the International Beauty Forum—a hair show, competition and beauty expo that included a welcome party attended by TWO former Japanese prime ministers.

HIGHLIGHTS: Robert Passage, CEO of Pivot Point International, served as a judge for the competition and also presented awards on stage. Because of Robert and Pivot Point’s relationship with the Yamanos, our group was given incredible backstage and front row access to the mannequins, models and student competitors.

Competition categories included long hair design, cut and color, perm wrapping, kimono dressing and more. Jane and her daughter kicked off the hair show by creating a formal upstyle on a model in front of the most beautiful display of flowers created by a famed Japanese floral designer.

To learn about how YOU can attend a study abroad trip with Pivot Point, CLICK HERE.


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