This year marks Shiseido's 140th anniversary and to mark the occasion, the brand have announced that Jennifer Connelly will serve as their first global spokesperson. While Connelly may not have been the first name that springs to mind when you think of the beauty giant, the actress told WWD that the decision to work together was a natural one. "I've had a long relationship with Shiseido - I worked with them in the Eighties on an ad campaign, and have been using their products ever since," she told WWD. "It's nice to reconnect with them after so many years."
Connelly will front their Future Solution LX premium skincare line and the campaign, which was shot last week, will be out this winter. "This year marks our 140th anniversary and it is our intention to look to the future and continue to inspire women around the globe," Hiroshi Maruyama, general manager of international marketing at Shisedio, explained. "We believe Jennifer, who is an accomplished actress and mother, will resonate with consumers around the world.
If you ask Kwok Chan, Marilyn Agency's director of international scouting, the increasing popularity of Asian models isn't just a fad. Chan, whose agency represents the model Liu Wen, also discusses in Vogue's December issue why none of the most hotly demanded faces are Asian-American, saying: “The only way I can explain why there are no big Asian-American names is, Why are photo shoots done in some exotic locale and it looks like you’ve shot in someone’s backyard? Fashion is fantasy; it’s about perception.”
Shiseido Creative Director Dick Page believes the increase in popularity is due to economics, since in the global market, China, Taiwan and South Korea have made strong gains in recent years. And seeing more Asian models, according to Vogue China Editor Angelica Cheung, has encouraged Asian consumers to shift their standard of beauty. She explained: “Traditionally the Chinese favored a classic kind of beauty — big, round eyes, cute small mouth, a high nose, and very fair skin. The Chinese models who have made it internationally are not beauties in the traditional sense, so they are modernizing the concept of beauty in China. When I was growing up in the seventies, everyone wore a blue, gray, or green Mao suit—there was no chance for women to be glamorous or different. Now you see young Chinese trying to be radical by dyeing their hair blonde or blue, sporting tattoos. It is a combination of copying what they see is popular in the Western world and trying to stand out in a nation where almost all of the 1.3 billion population have straight black hair and brown eyes."