The face tells the story of the life

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The essence of feminine beauty for today’s world. Why the Kaodachi Research Institute was formed

The global average life expectancy for women? Perhaps you have heard: in the ten countries that rank top for longevity, it is 85.24 years (source: 2014 Life Table). And Japanese women have the longest life expectancy, at 86.83 years. When it comes to the criteria for feminine beauty, however, the ongoing, mainstream belief is that youth is of supreme importance. But the simple mantra of “the younger you look, the more beautiful you are” has an oppressive effect, backing women into a corner and making them overly focused on seeking out various anti-ageing strategies. However, we all know that artificially produced youth is not true beauty.

We set ourselves to examining what a more natural version of essential feminine beauty should be, and to defining criteria of beauty for today’s world that cater to women living much longer. We arrived at the concept of kaodachi. The truly beautiful kaodachi is one that reflects an abundantly lived life. Without becoming fearful over the passage of time, women should love and be proud of their appearance and live a life radiating beauty. We established the Kaodachi Research Institute because we sincerely desire to bring in this new criteria of beauty and bring happiness to women around the world.

Creative Director Akihiro Takahashi

Reinventing the meaning of KAODACHI

The conventional meanings of "kaodachi"

The shape of the entire face. Facial structure. Facial features.
The face one is born with. Something unchangeable.

Our definition of kaodachi

A complexion* which reveals one’s mind and spirit.
Physical manifestation of one’s mind. Something that
changes depending on one’s will or effort.

*Complexion: Formed of the skin covering the entire facial area and extending downwards to the hypodermal tissue,
not simply the surface skin of the face.


A revolution in the concept of beauty

It has been said that beauty lies in form - in the harmony of lines, the symmetry of parts and the youthfulness of features. Beauty is unique, and even a set idea of beauty is not something that can be clearly verified. Each person recognizes excellence in their own way, and values exceptions.
We began to see this trend in the 1960s. Together, magazines, brands and products pushed the concepts of searching for one’s individuality, and exploring a new world which awakens one’s individuality. In the 1990s, this trend became even clearer. Now, a different kind of revolution is taking place. Personal awareness has grown, and the way in which one expresses oneself has become even more important. Aesthetic sense has also changed and includes not only lines, physiques and facial features, but a way of living, a sense of presence and individuality. Today’s beauty is expressed in the form of individuality, gestures, and expressions, through a completely new approach to one’s inner self. One must be calm and face oneself, and allow the mind to mature. Without doing so, the outer self cannot be made more beautiful. It is not easy to do, but what are needed are self-discipline and goal setting, a sense of freedom gained by facing one’s inner self, and self-questioning through well-honed sensibility. Through this extremely psychological approach, finally, the inner self gains genuine richness. To reconstruct beauty is to give oneself a new depth. The issues are psychological, internal and extremely personal. In beauty, the concepts of a slim figure, anti-ageing, and properties such as firmness and moisture will not disappear completely. However, they will no longer form the collective shared view on beauty. One should not be bound by these standards, rather, one should strongly affirm that which lies in the deepest part of one’s being. It is important to enjoy life based on this affirmation.

Georges Vigarello

Author of Histoire de la beauté (A History of Beauty)
Research Director at the École des hautes études en sciences sociales (EHESS)
(The School for Advanced Studies in the Social Sciences)

Born in 1941 in Monaco. He conducts extensive research related to body representation. He also researches public health, sports psychology, the history of the body and the history of beauty. In 1969 he was appointed professor at the Institut national du sport et de l'éducation physique (INSEP) (National Institute of Sport and Physical Education), and in 1979 he was appointed professor of educational studies at The University of Vincennes in Saint-Denis. In 1986 he was appointed professor of educational studies at Paris Descartes University, and in 1993 took the additional post of Research Director at the EHESS. His lecture subject is the history of body politics. At present, he is Research Director at the EHESS. He holds honorary doctorates from the University of Montreal, and the University of Lausanne.

His main publications include Histoire de la beauté (A History of Beauty) (2012) and Le Sentiment de soi.
Histoire de la perception du corps (A History of Self-consciousness and Body Awareness) (2014).

Institut interdisciplinaire d’anthropologie du contemporain
Georges Vigarello


Assuming that people’s lives and lifestyles are represented by kaodachi, what makes kaodachi beautiful is the idea of making people’s lives beautiful and researching everything from the scientific to the philosophical, transcending fields of study.

Research Themes

  • What is kaodachi?
  • How is kaodachi influenced by internal factors and external appearance?
  • How to create one’s own kaodachi

Examples of Areas of Research

  • The brain

    Brain waves and biorhythm

  • Human thought

    Self-esteem, positive/negative
    mindset, values, individuality, personality

  • Emotions

    Changes in various human emotions
    and emotional balance, expression
    of emotions (amount and intensity level)

  • Appearance

    Appearance, facial expression,
    facial impression, mimetic muscles

  • Facial skin

    Facial characteristics, individuality
    of outward appearance,
    skin characteristics



May 2013

Activities of the research institute

  1. Research and announcements related to KAODACHI
  2. Research and development of KAODACHI MANAGEMENT
  3. Conducts information exchange activities (forums, seminars, lectures, study groups, exchange meetings, and more)


France Address: 332 Rue St Honore, 75001 Paris
Japan Address: 5-4-35-1303 Minamiaoyama, Minato-ku, Tokyo

Creative Director

Akihiro Takahashi


Georges Vigarello