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Behavior Science Research

We think that we need to deeply learn about consumers first in order to help them achieve beauty and health as well as create their beautiful lifestyles. In order to do so, we have been not only conducting questionnaire surveys to collect opinions/requests, which is the conventional method, but also conducting observation and measurement by jumping into the consumers’ actual daily lives. We have implemented researches repeatedly by investigating even how consumers act subconsciously before they themselves recognize.

Global Consumer Research

We develop products for our consumers around the world. In order to do so, we need to learn about the consumers in the world. We explore the consumers’ “needs” and “wants” by examining skin conditions, beauty awareness, beauty behaviors and life environments in each region not only from the dermatological viewpoint but also from the anthropological viewpoint.

Examples of target countries:
Japan, China, South Korea, India, Thailand, Indonesia, Vietnam, Singapore,
France, Germany, Italy,
USA, Brazil

Global Consumer Research Examples of target countries

Examples of research items:
Skin measurement: Photos of face from various angles (skin shape, skin image, hair style), amount of moisture, amount of sebum
Beauty awareness: Skin concerns, concerns about the area around eyes, hair concerns, body concerns, and beauty motivation
Beauty behavior: Clothes to be worn when visiting the venue, list of cosmetics in possession, daily skincare video, beauty service experience
Preferences: Color tone preference, fragrance type preference, and texture preference
Life environment (beauty environment): Areas around the washing stand, bathroom and dresser, daily skincare scene
Life environment (purchasing environment): Department store, specialty store, pharmacy, supermarket, individually owned store, drug store, convenience store, salon
General awareness/behavior: Dietary life, sleep, stress, smoking and UV ray exposure history
General attributes: Gender, age, occupation, marital status, family, purchasing power

Example of investigation items

Example of research result (I)
Comparison of average face types from each country by age
(Morphing image processing)


Example of research result (II)
Relationship between suntan history and wrinkles at the corners of the eyes
The following diagram was plotted with the questionnaire results regarding past UV ray measures and average values of actual wrinkle areas at the corners of the eyes. The target is women in their 50’s from 14 countries. As a result, it was confirmed that women who have taken UV ray related measures since they were young, have less wrinkle areas at the corners of the eyes.

Relationship between suntan history and wrinkles at the corners of the eyes

Omotenashi (Counter Service) Research

We hope that consumers purchase our products and enjoy using them. And we also hope that they like them and continue to use them. Everything is up to the consumers. Therefore, we have been conducting research on counter services, which are for establishing the ties with consumers, including “how we can make consumers interested in our products, feel comfortable, feel excited, etc.”, by using various cutting-edge psychophysiological measurement.

Product introduction method by stimulating consumers’ five senses to increase their comfort level

We examined how the consumers’ brains react when they touch the products at the counters, etc. with the near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) which investigates brain activity based on the changes in brain blood flow. This method is non-invasive and places no burden on consumers. At the same time, we investigated the changes in the feelings that they had at the time via a questionnaire survey. Based on the relationship between brain blood flow and changes in feelings, we can see what kind of feeling the consumer has at the time of product introduction, in the form of his or her brain reaction.

Brain blood flow (NIRS) measurement part

As can be seen in the following diagram, there are various introduction activities related to five senses from 1. to 5. among product introduction activities at the counters. As a result of our detailed investigation, we found out that the blood flow significantly increases in the wider area of brain when the consumers take active actions for the cosmetics involving tactile sense and sense of touch and smell, including “3. Touch the contents”, “4. Smell the scent” and “5. Touch the container”, as compared to when they obtain information in a slightly passive manner with their senses of hearing and vision, including “1. Oral product explanation” and “2. Receive explanation while seeing the written tools.” Furthermore, this time, the correlation with not only the attractive points of the product but also comfort and satisfaction level for the product was also seen. In other words, it can be predicted that the brain activity of consumers becomes active when they take active actions such as touching/smelling cosmetics, creating positive feelings. We may be able to cultivate the exciting feelings of consumers if we provide opportunities to promote their proactive actions, which make them feel like experiencing on their own, at the counters as well as when they use the cosmetics.

five senses from 1. to 5.
Joint research with National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology

[Joint research with National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology]
The research paper is published in Chapter 4 of Infrared Spectroscopy – Life and Biomedical Sciences.(opens in new window.)

Illusion Effect Research

Illusion refers to “the perception that is different from the target’s original nature”.
Cases when our eyes look bigger than actual size and face shapes look different due to makeup can be regarded as one of the illusions. Therefore, Shiseido implemented a quantitative verification with regard to makeup effect which had been frequently expressed in a subjective manner, by utilizing a method used in illusion (perceptual psychological) researches jointly with Morikawa Laboratory, School of Human Sciences, Osaka University.

Illusion effect with eyeliner and mascara

We quantified the illusion effect of eye makeup using the psychophysical measurement method used in perceptual psychological researches.
As the first step, we took 2 photos of the same model’s face (one with no makeup and one with eye makeup), adjusted them using image processing so that they can be identical except for the eye areas, and specified this as the standard stimulus (measurement target). Next, as the comparison stimulus (ruler for eye size), we enlarged/reduced the eye size of the same model’s bare skin and created these images.

Illusion effect with eyeliner and mascara

We presented one each of the standard stimulus and comparison stimulus on the right and left of the display respectively and asked the subjects to select the one in which the eyes looked bigger. By repeating this process many times, the point of perceptual equality for the eye size with makeup can be measured. In other words, we can measure about what percentage the eye size with the makeup looked bigger as compared to the eye size without the makeup.

comparison stimulus

The following is one example of the results. It was found that in case of the face with makeup by eyeliner and false eyelashes shown in the middle, the eyes looked 6.4% horizontally and vertically bigger than the actual size (113% in terms of area).

The following is one example of the results

Moreover, as a result of the series of researches, we found out that eye size with eye shadow also looks bigger than the one without makeup.
As can be seen, we are working on the research for approaching the depth of makeup as well as communicating such depth to consumers by verifying the perceptual effects of makeup in a scientific manner.