When walking up behind Himiko, most assume she’s a teen with her dark locks. Folk are in awe when they realise she’s actually 90 years old! The former geisha garnered countless admirers over her career with frequent patrons from the famous and wealthy.
Himiko did not have a great start to life. She had been abandoned by her family as a baby, left on the streets of Kyoto to fend for herself. She was taken in and raised by a respected geisha “Mother”.
Growing up in an “okiya”, she was surrounded by geishas. It was natural that she fell in love with the way of life. She felt endless appreciation for her new family.
During her time with the geishas, she flourished into a beautiful woman. Himiko was famous in the Flower District of Kyoto for her lovely locks, earning her the moniker of “The Kyoto Rapunzel”. Her hair was glossy and as black as night, making her the envy of many.
After retiring, Himiko was reluctant to leave her old life behind. Instead, she decided to continue helping her ‘sisters’, teaching and guiding the new generation of geisha just as she had been. Thus, Himiko opened a little salon, right in the heart of Kyoto’s famous Flower District. Here, she continued working for over five decades.
Himiko has won countless awards for her dedication to the geisha way of life, even receiving honors from the royal family to thank her for her contribution to the nation’s culture.
Whilst many were captured by Himiko’s incredible tale, Dr. Linda Flores was captivated by the sight of her beautiful hair.
Dr. Flores is a board-certified hair specialist with 28 years’ experience. She was unable to understand how Himiko’s hair remained so long and black despite being 90 years old.
She made her way to Japan to meet with Himiko, wanting to discover the secret to her healthy tresses. The former geisha in turn, invited Dr. Flores to observe her work.
Dr. Flores was baffled by what she saw. She had assumed that geishas used wigs as they wore their complicated styles throughout the day. So she was amazed to see Himiko using their real hair when styling.
The doctor also noticed how clean Himiko’s salon was. Despite the geishas coming in daily to have their hair treated and styled, there was rarely even a strand of loose hair on the floor.
“Because of the complexity of the styles”
“They only wash their hair once a week”
“This should lead to stress on the scalp and hair loss”
“But these women have the healthiest hair I’ve seen in my entire career!”
Dr. Flores needed to know more and interviewed Himiko for more details.
“We geishas have always lived our lives in accordance to tradition”
“Our practices are passed down from geisha to maiko”
“We strive to use only natural ingredients”
“And this extends to our haircare”
“Our hair is our crown”
“It is the source of our confidence”
Their process starts with a curious floral extract that is combed through their hair during styling. An oil is used to cleanse during their weekly washing, followed by a handmade shampoo made only in the Flower District.
As Dr. Flores studied this routine, she noticed a similarity. Each product contained one key ingredient; Cherry Blossoms.
Dr. Flores had long known of the advantages cherry blossoms had on hair health but typical blooms did not provide such incredible results.
Himiko shared that the blossoms used are different; the trees have been cultivated since ancient times and can only grow and thrive in Kyoto. The geishas have been using the flowers for centuries as their benefits have remained unparalleled.
Dr. Flores was skeptical of this claim but took samples from the products and flowers, bringing them back to her lab for further studies. What she found amazed her- the flowers had high levels of beneficial supplements.
“Our pores on the scalp are easily clogged”
“Caused by chemicals in modern hair products”
“This stunts hair growth”
“The cherry blossoms contain an incredible amount of caffeic acid”
“This special acid wards off damage by free radicals in the environment”
“And promotes healthy hair growth”
“The extracts coat hair cuticles in a protective barrier”
“Locking in moisture to keep the locks soft and manageable”
“It also curbs cellular death within the scalp and hair”
“Preventing the strands from turning grey and week”
Dr. Flores wanted to share this discovery with the world but she knew not many could make the trip to Japan. Nor could many invest the time in the lengthy process, involving the brushing, oils and hard to procure shampoo. So, instead she decided to create a product to emulate Himiko’s method.
It took years of work for Dr. Flores and her team but Hanako™ was born.
Dr. Flores invited Himiko to be the first to try Hanako™ and the former geisha loved it.
“It’s incredible! The original method took a long time”
“And required many steps”
“But Hanako™ replaces all of it in one”
“My hair has been growing even faster than ever”
“It’s so much easier and convenient”
Himiko shared Hanako™ with her clients at the salon and each geisha gave their approval. They enjoyed how quick and simple the process was, all without compromising quality and results.
With the geishas’ approval, Dr. Flores began larger trials and 97% of testers saw positive results. Amongst them is Charlotte Reid, age 68.
“My hair has always been wiry”
“I fought breakages every day and had to keep it short”
“Doctor and specialists were of no help”
“But after using Hanako™ for 2 weeks, my hair is so healthy and thick!”
“It’s made me feel like a whole new woman”
Following the footsteps of the Geishas’ tradition, Hanako™ is formulated to be all natural. With the cherry blossoms only coming into bloom once a year, the ingredients can only be harvested in restricted quantity.
Supplies are already dwindling fast and cannot be restocked till next year.
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