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on 8 January 2010
I'll keep the background short: I grew up an athletic tomboy and skincare was the last thing on my mind ("Skincare is for pansies!"). That is, until that job (lots of daytime travelling in a hot country and very late nights) and a new hobby (surfing). A relative strong-armed me into getting monthly facials to fix all the abuse, and I finally realised how hard it was to repair all the damage.

I moved away a couple of years ago and haven't been able to find a beautician as great as my last (and only!) one. Zits? Open pores? Dull complexion? All would be gone the day after a session with her. I tried lots of facial products and routines, but they didn't work, regardless of price and promise.

I heard about this book and bought it - I've never bought a skincare book in my life, because I think most of them are codswallop. This book however, aims to teach you to take care of your own skin without having to spend a fortune on salons and special treatments. It starts off by dispelling skincare myths and explaining other aspects of daily life which contribute to skin deterioration. This is followed by a section listing the kit you will need for Saeki's recommended routine - there is no actual brand-plugging (as obviously you need to find the equivalent most suitable for your skin), except for a couple of Saeki-branded items, but you should be able to easily find substitutes at your local drug store. All items are common and affordable.

Most of the book walks you through face massages and rejuvenation routines. I'm not sure what the previous reviewer meant by there not being enough information, because all the photos and routines are accompanied by sufficient explanations, and there is certainly no shortage of text. All instructions are clear and concise, and even if you hate reading, the photos and diagrams speak for themselves. The routines are all no trouble and quick to execute, and can be easily worked into your daily or weekly schedule.

The most valuable section in the book teaches you how to assess your own skin condition and find out its needs. Verdicts like "Skintype, normal" and "Oily T-zone" are babytalk compared to what's in this section.

If anyone is worried about the quality of translation, the book, though distinctly Japanese in its tone and manner of instruction, makes for a very refreshingly positive and simple read. For some reason, the skincare advice also reads very Asian (which I am), and perhaps Caucasians or darker-skinned races might find this very different from their norm. And as an East Asian, I also really appreciate that this book avoids promoting that silly idea which says perfect Asian skin has to be bone-white.

The best thing about the book is that I am now finally able to achieve the skin condition I had with my former beautician - by myself!

So if you're Asian: seriously consider buying this book. If you have some other skintype: try it! You might learn something new. And if you're male: well, I tried stuff on my husband, who was pretty much a moisturiser and facial wash virgin, and it immediately showed results.
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on 15 September 2010
Hello there, I am the type of person that will ever never write a review I guess apart from been lazy I can really be bother to give my opinion but this time I really feel that I need to share my experience with this amazing book , I been a beauty junky all my life, I guess I started buying creams at the young age of 12... I come from a south america where woman are obsessed with beauty and any type of I can say that I have try all kinds of creams, peels, name it..., I also work for a fashion magazine so I do get lots of free products, but somehow after reaching my 30's my skin lost the glow and I try all kind of more expensive treatments that didn't work...facials, creme de la mere, sk-ii you name it ....
when in my last trip to Paris I meet this lady with the most amazing skin and she wasn't even wearing make up!! so I have to ask, she did mention that she learn all fron Chizu Saeki books and is not how much money I put into products but how I use the products, so bough the book and read it on my way back to London, the book can not be more clear, it needs lots of pictures because Ms Chizu Saeki aproach skin in a completely different manner, in a holistic way, she goes from teach you how to use the muscles of your face in a really easy and simple way, after a month I had my cheeks round and up as on my twenties! , my skin is better than in my twenties and I don't need to wear make up again!!!, I have the best skin of my life, I wish all woman realize that they can be beautiful and without expending lots of money and feel confident about the future, buy the and see it for yourself!, the best investment you can make for you skin!
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on 10 May 2015
It is a solid, basic advise book. I can't quite put my finger at why I expected a bit more out of it. Perhaps, because I had a chance to read other people's reviews and reports about Japanese skincare and life style.

What I liked: very no- nonsense, down to earth recommendations. A couple of good suggestions (skin lotion masks and warm towels on your face). A couple of warnings about potentially harmful ingredients (alcohol). Shizu Saeki is very careful not to recommend any specific cosmetic brands and relies instead on sensible skincare routine suggestions. She goes slightly beyond cosmetics to somewhat holistic approach, including importance of positive emotions and beautiful things.

What I didn't like: that she is so restricted in her recommendations. It is as if she is afraid to say too much about cosmetics, cosmetic ingredients, her good and bad experiences. It felt as if she has a lot more to say but doesn't go there for some reason. Perhaps if she praises something it will be viewed as hidden advert, and if something is criticised she will open herself for possible litigations?

As result her book is not quite a guide for those who want to restrict the use of cosmetics and stick to a simpler products, nor this is a full depth of information about the best Japan and the West may offer.

To be blunt, I found more useful tips and suggestions on the website by Wawaza, all natural traditional Japanese skincare company.
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on 29 April 2011
This book was imformative, contained a lot of knowlegde and certainly corrected my methods in skin care. Exspeacially love the lotion mask tip, my skin was soaked up with moisture.
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on 27 December 2010
Its a good book to learn how to take care of your skin without spending much money. It also treats some psychological aspects for you to feel more selfconfident. I like it.
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on 12 September 2016
This book is honestly unexpected and fantastic!

I didn't wanted to read books about skincare in years as they all speak about basic things that any person with common sense knew already or they just wanted to promote some brands.

Well this one instead truly made a revolution in my skincare regime and...after just few weeks I have already seen improvements in my skin.

I follow diligently each step suggested twice daily.
It takes longer than before but it's worthy!

I bought new products accordingly to the need of my skin (all explained in the book), I never skip the three minutes mask, I do twice daily the lymph massage explained, I apply the (firstly warmed between my hands/fingers) products with the movements recommended to get the most benefits...and it works!
It takes much longer than my 5-7minutes old routine, but I have already a much smoother skin, brighter, my complexion is undoubtedly better than before, I get (very surprisingly) much less breaks out and my combination skin has settled consistently.

I already passed all the tips to my mum and she is starting her "revolution" too.

I highly recommend anyone to buy and read this book, it will really revolution your skin. ^_^
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on 13 June 2011
After I bought the book I tried all the tips inside and I was amased how for no time I could see the difference in my skin condition.
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on 28 October 2010
I ordered this book while I was browsing the internet searching for more about the layering cleaning method favored by japanese women.
This book and Chizu Saeki was given good comments because it went against this trend of layering.
Ms Saeki has been an aethetics most of her life, working for Dior or Guerlain in Japan among others and she is the living proof of good skin care can do to a face.
But while she is giving many interesting tips she is also stating the obvious about skin car like "do not use too much products on your skin" as many japanese women (but not only) do.
Well at least it is obvious to me!
But this is a great book and I was particularly interested to know about her special moisturizing method using lotion: very easy to handle and to do and does wonder to the skin.
So I do recommend this book.
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on 27 July 2013
I love this book
This shows how to make the most of yourself regardless of budget and is so simple to incorporate to daily life
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on 28 May 2011
Very easy to read and great pictures in the book. This book is going to be my bible for my skin care! I read Acne for Dummies before, 300 pages and after book you still don't get it what to do with your skin. This book is short and clear, just follow instructions and be a winner!!! :)
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