Traveling is one the most amazing things you could do in your life. Admittedly, I haven’t done enough of it in my lifetime (at least according to my standards). I have a bucket list that’s about 10 pages long. I did, however, get the opportunity to go to one of the top spots on my list – Tokyo, Japan.
Dave has an obsession with Tokyo. He’s gone back every year at least once, for the past 8 YEARS! He says it’s a place where he feels like he can just be himself. I never understood until he surprised me with a trip there one day. The lights, the people, the food, the culture… everything about that city screams individuality, expression, and yet, at the same time, tradition. It’s magical and beautifully chaotic.
When I heard that Shu Uemura had come out with 21 new Tokyo-inspired shades for their Color Atelier Eyeshadow Kit, I knew I had to get my hands on them. Something about Tokyo inspires fanaticism around just about everything.
If you’ve never heard of the Shu Uemura Color Atelier palette before, you’ll definitely want to check it out here. It’s a refillable and re-usable palette that is actually brilliantly engineered, not to mention incredible for sustainability. Another thing about Japanese culture is their dedication to perfection and detail and this seemingly simple palette case is no exception. Its design is thanks to an incredible Japanese architect, Kumiko Inui, who was inspired by “Japanese craftwork”.
These amazing Tokyo-inspired colours influenced me to do something out of the ordinary from my classically neutral looks. After all, when in Tokyo… EXPRESS YOSELF. Not to mention, these vibrant and beautifully pigmented colours triggered something in me that just felt like playing with colour.
The above was a mood board I just felt like putting together after thinking about doing this look. I took the first pictures that caught my eye and didn’t question why. That’s the beauty of art right? It’s a unique and individual experience… and today, I was creating art… on my face.
I got an 8-shade palette and a 4-shade palette to customize and, of course, I had to make each its own little metaphor.
CHERRY BLOSSOMS4 Shade Palette
Tokyo holds a really special place in my heart. It was Dave and my first trip together and we were in midst of really getting to know each other fully. As he showed me around the beautiful Tokyo spots, I realized how it easy it was to fall in love with it. The highlight moment of the trip was definitely the cherry blossoms. The idea of them pulls on the heart strings of a cheeseball like me every time. They only come around for a short amount of time, are constantly fleeting, but always return – just like life and its joys and sorrows.
I wanted to dedicate this Tokyo-inspired make up look to the lesson that those cherry blossoms taught me. I wanted it to look like my eyes were blooming from the inner corners, becoming more and more rich as the gradient went out. So the shades I chose was a combination of bright fuschia-pink tones to a soft, glittery white (that reminds me of how the cherry blossoms danced in the sunlight). I loved how the pigments looked so much, I had to do a full tutorial to show you guys how beautiful the gradient turned out. Watch out for the video on Youtube soon!
GRIT & GRIND OF TOKYO STREETS8 Shade Palette
I wanted the 8-shade palette to be my go-to look type of palette – one that really spoke to the person I am: a city dwelling, concrete-jungle-loving, urbanite. Each of these shades are beautifully inspired by the paradox of Tokyo’s concrete world, its beautiful architecture, and its heritage rooted in nature. I’m in love with these earth tones and, further more, how this grey shade is inspired by Omotesando (one of my favourite areas of Tokyo that’s renowned for its architectural excellence).
I think the best part of the Color Atelier system is the fact that it’s dynamic. It changes with who you are and you can change that in an instant. I am so excited to try out every single one of these beautiful pigmented shades. They go on so beautifully and blend like a dream. The best part is that each shade also has a meaning (and you know how I am with that).
At the end of the day, what you wear and how you do your make up are such a reflection and expression of who you are. Tokyo is all about that self-expression and I could not be more in love with how beautifully this make up palette and Shu Uemura’s system embodies that. Now to plan my next trip back to that incredibly inspiring city!
Have you ever been to Tokyo? Which of these Shu Uemura shades are your favourite?