The geisha have shared many secrets with me over the years, but the ones I treasure most are not the beauty tips—although I love each and every one of those too!—but the things they have mentioned in passing or taught me through elegant example. Whenever I am feeling tired or in need of a boost, I find myself returning to these truths and find myself feeling better before long.

1. A large part of the allure of the geisha stems from the fact that they’re a little bit unknowable. I’m no longer single, but if I were I would definitely take some learnings from that. It's a good thing to be a little bit mysterious.

2. Red lipstick looks good on everyone.

3. True beauty begins in the heart and mind.

4. There are many attractive women out there, but it is hard to not be attracted to someone who is confident, courageous and has a point of view.

5. When it comes to showing some skin—less is more. When in formal kimono almost every inch of their body is covered. The only areas exposed are the hands and the nape of the neck, tantalizing the imagination.

6. Although the West has largely misappropriated the geisha as concubines, they are in fact highly trained professional dancers and musicians, very well educated and very good at what they do. Being excellent at what you do is undeniably appealing.

7. There’s a lot to be said for dressing up. Especially in this land of hoodies and jeans, putting on a dress or something special not only feels good, it celebrates your feminine side.

8. Wash your face every night. Because purification is at the heart of the geisha beauty ritual, taking the time to properly cleanse my face every evening makes me feel like I am getting a truly fresh start.

9. Stay out of the sun! I will walk across the street to stay in the shade and always wear sunscreen. Long before science proved how damaging UV rays are for the skin, the geisha knew that staying out of the sun kept their skin looking healthy. Using a deeply hydrating moisturizer, like the GOLD Camellia Beauty Oil, is one of my favorite ways to end the day.

10. Some of the most attractive, mesmerizing geisha I have known are the ones who were in their 70s and beyond, because they have honed the art of being an interesting person over all those decades. In the West, we are obsessed with youth and beauty, but these women have taught me that beauty is something to be gained over time, not something that is lost over time.

Victoria Tsai
Chief Treasure Hunter

published April 2015

Beauty Secrets, Geisha
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