Keiko Kitagawa interview article in “Maquia” April 2016 issue (English translation)

Cover of “no gift” edition:

Cover of regular edition:

Unswaying in her beauty
Keiko Kitagawa: This is my Beauty Routine

Anytime she has a dream, she also has a strong sense of justice about achieving it. Just like the heroines she portrays, we get the impression that Ms. Kitagawa is a person who “can’t be swayed”. She’s got perfect looks, intelligence, wit and is firm in her behavior. But she doesn’t do it for the strength alone; it’s an inherent discipline. Ms. Kitagawa, what are some of the things in your life that are non-negotiable for you?


Not being able to cut any corners is exhausting. But I like that about my work.

I keep my skin care routine as simple as possible, because I think it’s important to recognize that your body has the power to heal itself. I go to the gym and work with a trainer about three times a month, and I do a lot of running. When I was 24 years old, I quit eating all of my beloved junk food and got serious about taking care of myself. In my case, when I put in the work it’s easy to see the results when I’m on screen. If I cut any corners or cheat, everyone will be able to tell. So while I regret that I can’t cut any corners with my regimen, it’s better for me that I have a job that keeps me accountable.


I don’t want to give up until everyone is satisfied with my “miracle performance”.

Whenever I’m shooting TV dramas or movies, I’m not satisfied until I feel like I’ve given my best possible performance – one of my mentors told me, “be as subtle as a cloud”, and to “redo your pitch” until your performance is like the roar of an airplane. People only see the perfectly shot moment, but not all the other work behind it. I do the same thing during magazine photoshoots. I make an effort to pose with all of my might behind it before the shot is made. Because I care about how it’s going to look when the photo goes to the customer. I realized that my work affects more than just myself and the staff, it also impacts the people who view it. So that’s how I’m feeling about my work more and more recently.


I’m bad at negotiating. I want to be honest, and say what I mean.

People see me as being really strong, but honestly there are times when I get nervous too. I say to myself all the time – “I wonder why what I did at work today didn’t go so well…” like they’re going to drop me, or “wow, was that really all I could do today? Was that my best?” I try to stay positive, but it’s tough to be strong all the time. I’d rather just be honest and talk about how I really feel – that’s how I am both at work and in private. I can’t stand being coy and roundabout with my feelings.


No matter what’s going on each day, I try to stay the same as I always am.

Here is my routine. I leave about 30 minutes early with my huge work bag with me. I have a few items in there that will work no matter where I’m going – either to a set or for a magazine photo shoot. Because I don’t know exactly what to expect, I keep my clothing and makeup neutral. No matter what the situation is, I try not to change my character. I’ve been like that since I was young, really.

About myself

I believe that everything I do is necessary because it gives me the “experience” I need to handle the next thing. My goal is “to make today happier than yesterday”.

Even now, whenever I go out to dinner with my friends, I always prefer to be the listener, enjoying everyone around me talking. I’m happiest when I’m passively listening and receiving everyone’s energy and positive feelings. I want to make everyone else just as happy too. So my goal is to try and spread as much joy as I can. I want to enrich myself and those around me in both my private life and in my career. I’m not the kind of person who will ever say, “I wish I could go back to that time…” because I really value the experience I’m having in the present.

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(Translation by Fandom Services, paid for by this blog to the benefit of all English-speaking and English-learning Keiko fans.)

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