(pictured: my Majolica Majorca foundation and blushers)

For me, there are two Japanese brands that combine ultra-princessy packaging and superb pocket-friendliness: (Kanebo’s) Lavshuca and (Shiseido’s) Majolica Majorca.

I haven’t really talked about Majolica Majorca very much because Lavshuca has really edged Majolica Majorca out for me in the last couple of seasons.

I do remember how excited I was when it was first launched in July 2003, which was way before some of my current favorites (like Lavshuca and Jill Stuart) took to the stage. At the time, packaging for Japanese drugstore lines was never about being maximally appealing…until Shiseido launched Majolica Majorca, which targeted consumers in their late teens and early twenties. (There were always lines with cute packaging, but they were never packaged to the point of being invincibly dreamy.)

Gold is the predominant color for most of the casings, with filigree patterns, emblems, words written in fancy styles, and other decorative details. It has a royal and antiquey feel, and it was all very cute and princessy.

Their liquid eyeliners and mascaras have always been very popular. As for me, I have got two of their blushers and a powder foundation.

Both blushers are medium to sheer. PK333 is a cool pink (similar to Lavshuca Cheek Color PK-1) and OR211 is a light orange. I prefer PK333 because OR211 is a bit too warm for me.

The two-way powder foundation (Skin Remake Compact) is quite different from the ZA two-way foundation (also made by Shiseido) that I have been using for years. Relatively, Majolica Majorca’s powder foundation has a more moist feel, has a slightly better coverage, but controls shine much less effectively. (Because it controls shine rather poorly, I only wear it when the weather is very cold.) But if your skin-type is combination or slightly dry, this might be a good choice for you as it does give a smooth and almost satiny finish.

Recently, Majolica Majorca’s packaging has not been appealing to me. I think it is because brands like Lavshuca and Jill Stuart are really pushing it in this area. Also, for me, the recent products are just a little less than exciting.

But I still want Majolica Majorca to wow me again!

I’d be interested to know your view of Majolica Majorca and your favorite Majolica Majorca products.

{ 34 comments… read them below or add one }

Tammy Monday, July 9, 2007

I love the foundation and blusher casings… I just was never too sure about getting budget foundations so I didn’t buy it :( I wish the Pressed Fantasia powder casing was the same style, because recently I was looking into that… But MM definitely has the marketing down. Just looking at the packaging makes me yearn for their products!

So far I only have the MM Active Spice blusher and two of the individual eye palettes. I’m satisfied with all of them, especially for the cheap price, but the package designs are definitely not as exciting as the makeup cases.


Empress Monday, July 9, 2007

Not only is Majolica Majorca backed by big time Shiseido, I think there’s a slight mother-implied grandeur towards their products. Whenever my mom sees that I’ve bought Majolica it’s like I’ve made the “right” decision since it’s something she knows and grandma knows. I feel that they capture more of my attention when I’m reading japanese magazines.

The packaging is always a nice touch on their behalf. I’m still fiddling with their mascara and have enjoyed their foundation and eyeshadow as well as blushers. In canada, I suppose this is one of the only brands we get and thus we associate japanese cosmetics with it so heavily.


PJ Monday, July 9, 2007

Hello Tammy,

As you know, many budget lines in Japan are made by well-known companies like Shiseido, Kanebo, and Kose. I think the foundation products under these lines should have more or less the same quality as their premium counterparts. I guess the difference is that new formulations tend to debut in premium lines first (like Maquillage and Revue)and then filter down to the budget lines a little later (a bit like fashion, I suppose).

The MM products you have are definitely considered to be more popular than what I have. Glad you like them!

Some Japanese brands surely know how to make the biggest visual impact, and MM is undoubtedly a very good example!


PJ Monday, July 9, 2007

Hello Empress,

Thank you for stopping by and leaving a comment!

You made a valid and insightful point here.

What you said reminds me of a post I read a while ago. (If you happen to read Chinese and are interested, let me know by e-mail and I will try to find the article for you.)

The writer mentioned the solid and long-lasting brand loyalty that Shiseido enjoyed over generations of customers. She definitely shares your sentiments.

It is interesting that Shiseido was once the victim of this when young people thought it was not trendy and chic enough for them. In response, PN was Shiseido’s attempt to appeal to the new generation, and , as you might know, it was a huge success.

While PN “grew up” to become Maquillage, we have Majolica Majorca to appeal to even younger customers. All these moves have consolidated Shiseido’s status as a brand for all ages.

(Now, with Inoui ID being discontinued, all I want is for Dick Page (Shiseido’s current creative director, who created Inoui ID) to bring out something even more fantastic!)


Tammy Tuesday, July 10, 2007

I agree with empress’s comments too, about this “trust” in Shiseido products. And I’ve definitely felt the effect of successful marketing. Growing up in America, where Shiseido only has one line of makeup, I felt it was too “old” and sophisticated for younger people, and never wanted to try it, even though I felt it was targeted toward Asian people like me. Since I came to Japan and was inundated with the spectrum of Shiseido lines both high-end and low-end, I’ve been much more willing to try Shiseido products. I also have a much better perspective on just how vast the company is. They seem to have blurred the line between traditional drugstore and counter cosmetics (you can buy Maquillage from a 7-11 or a fancy Isetan counter), whereas there is truly a gap in America.


Izzy Tuesday, July 10, 2007

PJ I owe you some emails love ;) Forgive me! I did want to do a quickie comment on your MJ blog though! First of all I love the close ups pics of the palttes! Those look great!

Personally MJ is still quite a deep love for me and even borderline lust like ;)

MJ is such a high quality product for an affordable price! I adore a majority of the line!

My favorites consist of the eye palettes, the mascara (which is an absolute cult item for me), and the single eyeshadows!

I love the gorgeous princess like packaging on everything as well!

I think mostly what impresses me is the good solid pigment you get from most of the items at such a cheap price! You can’t go wrong really!

Shiseido in general makes such a solid makeup product. I think it’s truly ingenious to offer a similar solid cosmetic in such cute, affordable packaging that not only reels in the masses of teenagers but also people that are in their twenties and up that just enjoy “cute” items!

If possible I like this line even more than Maquillage and the regular Shiseido label.

I honestly love the fact that Shiseido has branch offs that are exclusive to Japan. It makes them truly unique to own, collect, use, etc…!

I think if it should ever pop stateside it would probably become so consorted and changed that we wouldn’t recognize the original content!

Anyway..I am babbling on aren’t I?



PJ Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Hello Tammy again,

Yes, I think, for such a reputable brand like Shiseido, it doesn’t matter where their products are sold. People know the brand. (I guess, for up and coming brands, they need to choose retail points carefully according to how they want to build the brand image.)

I’d love to be able to buy something from Maquillage once in a while from 7-11. That can be quite interesting.

It would be like…”I’ll pick up some rice crackers and some instant noodles…and maybe a new Maquillage lipstick for tomorrow!”

Fantastic. Now that’s shopping.


PJ Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Hello Izzy,

No worries. Just take your time.

At the moment, Majolica Majorca is my favorite Shiseido line as well.

Also, the thing about exclusivity. I don’t usually admit this, but I don’t think it is always such a terribly bad thing that some of these brands are not available (in the sense of having physical retails points) in America and Europe.

Apart from their outstanding quality in the first place, exclusivity is what creates part of their value and is what fuels people’s passion for them. It takes more efforts to get them and we don’t forget about them that easily once they arrive in our drawers…

Also, from what I read and from my personal experience, it does seem that Japan keeps the best consumer products that they make (not just cosmetics) inside the country. Very interesting…


Empress Wednesday, July 11, 2007

I’m so suprised to get responses and a full blown conversation going in comments! (delighted)
hello Tammy, izzy and pj!
The asian ways to capture their market is always different than the western methodology to establishing a stronger hold on the market. Astonishing, my sister was telling me how Majolica Majorca and other budget brands in asia are similar to what we associate as Covergirl type of lines. You can definately notice the details that Majolica even has on the single eyeshadows with a full blown crown while MAC would come in a single palette if you need or a pop top container.

In terms of exclusiveness, I believe that is the way of the Japanese where they aren’t that interested in conquering foreign markets. Instead they let the foreigners try to penetrate the very large gap first in language and different business methods. How I yearn for a trip to Japan so I can stock up… last time I went I was too young to be interested in makeup.


PJ Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Hello Empress again,

(And hello to everyone indeed! I am very excited to read all these insightful viewpoints.)

The marketing methodology is definitely different. The ads (on TV and in magazines) are so visually enticing that I just want to sample the products immediately. Also, they always run these ads way before they are launched to create hype and yearning. (Very few western brands do this or do this as much as the Japanese brands do.)

Not to mention all the cosmetics magazines that fuel into all this…

I agree with you that sometimes there is almost a nonchalance in trying to expand their market. I think one of the reasons is the fact that the Japanese market is uniquely self-sustainable. Of course they export many things (like my NEC cell phone, which is made in Japan) and import many things (we all know that luxury foreign products have a following in Japan), but essentially I think it is a relatively self-contained market.

I think if certain (not just cosmetics) brands decide that they want to “conquer the world” (like some have already done), they probably can and they probably will…


chilliwhitechoco Tuesday, April 22, 2008

hey where did you buy the majolica majorca blusher&the blusher case?do you know where i can buy it online?thank you…


PJ Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Hi Chilliwhitechoco,

Thank you very much for visiting my blog!

I bought these items when I was in Asia. As for on-line sites, there are several that carry Japanese cosmetics. I have shopped from the following two sites which I would recommend:


Adam Beauty is based in Hong Kong, and Ichibankao is based in Japan. Both take PayPal and ship internationally.

Enjoy browsing, and let me know if you have any other question.

Thank you again for stopping by my blog. Hope to hear from you again! :)


Hannah Monday, September 1, 2008

I’ve been wanting to buy the Majolica Majorca Foundation case because it is so pretty. But I don’t want the the actual foundation. I much more prefer the Lavshuca Powder Foundation. So, I’m wondering, do you know if the Lavshuca Powder Foundation would fit into the MJ case?

I love your blog by the way! ;)


PJ Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Hi Hannah,

Thank you for reading my blog!

I see. I think the Lavshuca foundation refill, like other refills from various Kanebo lines, can go into Shiseido foundation cases. But the refill will be too small to stay in securely. It is mainly because Shiseido uses plastic trays for the powder and Kanebo uses metal trays, so the actual slot of Shiseido’s cases is much bigger. (I just tried putting my Revue refill into my Majolica Majorca case.)

I think if you put a Lavshuca refill into a Majolica Majorca case, you will need to tape the back of the tray to the case to make sure it rests securely.

Hope it helps, and thank you for posting your question! :)


Betty Friday, September 19, 2008

I know this is an old post but I have a question. What shade do you use for the foundation and do you know what an NC20/25 in MAC should use?


PJ Monday, September 22, 2008

Hi Betty,

The shade I use for Majolica Majorca’s Skin Remake Compact is OC(Ochre)-20. If it helps, it is very slightly darker than the ZA Two-Way Foundation in 22 that I have been using.

I haven’t used a MAC foundation for years, so I had a look at the MAC website. I think, if you are an NC20/25, OC-20 might be a bit too dark for you and I would suggest OC-10.

I hope it helps, and thank you for your question! :)


Mad Murderer Mud Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Can ZA Two-Way Foundation refil fit into the Majolica Majorca case?


PJ Friday, October 31, 2008

Hi Mad Murderer Mud,

I was just trying to see if the ZA refill could go into the Majolica Majorca case. I could try hard to push it into the slot, but I think it will damage the case. So I would not recommend it.

Thank you very much for your question! :)


Karen Saturday, March 7, 2009

Hi, i was wondering where I can buy both the MAJOLICA MAJORCA Customize Case online small and big?


PJ Monday, March 9, 2009

Hi Karen,

http://www.adambeauty.com usually stocks the small one, but it is currently out of stock there.

You can try contacting ichibankao.com to see if they can locate the cases for you. (You can contact them about whatever items you would like to purchase that are not listed on their site.)

Hope it helps, and thank you very much for your question! :)


Betty Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Hi PJ, I was wondering, if it isn’t too much trouble, if you could take a picture of this foundation next to your Za #22 foundation for comparison?


PJ Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Hi Betty,

Thank you for your request.

If you would like to send me an e-mail, I would be happy to send you a photo of the two foundations side by side.

Thank you for stopping by, and I look forward to hearing from you again. :)


Julia Saturday, August 14, 2010

Dear PJ,

sorry for a comment on this older post.
I just wanted to say that Lash Gorgeous Wing is the first mascara I really loved, and that their pore cover powder really works excellent. (Still going to try Lavshuca’s Lucent powder you seem to love!)
I just got one of their new eyeshadow palettes (the greenish one from the fall collection) and really like it, although the colours seem a bit hard to combine at first glance.

Unfortunately, their nail polish chipped the first day I wore it, which rarely happens with me. Too bad, as the colours are lovely.

I always enjoy your opinions on Japanese make-up! :)


PJ Monday, August 23, 2010

Hi Julia,

Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts on the Majolica Majorca items you have. They are very helpful!

The Pressed Pore Cover sounds very promising, and I have been interested in it for a while. I might give it a try!

Hope you will like Lavshuca’s Finish Powder if you decide to try it. (I personally prefer Lucent to High Cover.)

Thank you for posting your comment again! :)


Joanna Friday, February 25, 2011

Hi PJ ^^
I want to purchase MJ foundation but i’m more cool/neutral toned and pale do you know if any of the shades are on the neutral or cool side? I just can’t tell from pictures if OC10 is more yellow than BO10 or maybe they are neutral??
Thank you so much ^^


PJ Monday, February 28, 2011

Hi Joanna,

Generally, with foundations from Japanese brands, OC (Ochre) shades are neutral shades. BO (Beige Ochre) shades are cooler and more yellow-toned than OC shades, and PO (Pink Ochre) shades are warmer and more pink-toned than OC shades.

(So, BO10 should be more yellow-toned than OC10. If you want to go for a cooler shade (as in more yellow-toned), then perhaps try a BO shade.)

If you haven’t, have a look at this post for more information:


Hope it helps, and thank you very much for your question! :)


Vvn Sunday, August 14, 2011

Hello, I know this post is quite old, but I really wanted to ask… do you think that the MJMJ Blush customize colours would fit into the foundation case securely(on either side) … as I know that the large customize case is no longer available… just a wonder ^^ Thankyou x


PJ Sunday, August 14, 2011

Hi Vvn,

I just tested it out, and only one blusher could fit into the case. As you can see, the foundation refill has quite rounded edges so it is not possible to fit both blushers in at the same time. I tried the sponge side as well, and, again, I could fit only one in.

If you want to, you can put one blusher on the refill side and one on the sponge side. You just need to tape them down so they don’t move.

Thank you for your question! :)


Andrea Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Hiii!!! :)
Do you think 2 of this blushes akinaistore.com/shiseido_majolica_majorca_cheek_customize can fits in this case akinaistore.com/shiseido_majolica_majorca_skin_remaker_case_2

Thanks in advance :)


PJ Thursday, May 24, 2012

Hi Andrea,

Your question happens to be essentially the same as the one Vvn asked above, so the same answer applies.

Thank you for your question!


Andrea Thursday, May 24, 2012

Ohhh I saw!!! :)
Thank You very soooooooooooo much :)


PJ Friday, May 25, 2012

Hi Andrea,

You are very welcome! :)


Kat Friday, June 22, 2012

Hi <3
I love your blog! I also tend to like asian brands (japanese and korean) than western brands. I'm just a student and on a tight budget, and i feel that I get more of my money's worth with asian brands compared to, let's say, Maybelline or Cover Girl.

And I love MJ's Skin Remaker! I am about to finish my first pan in the shade of oc10. It looks okay on my on natural lighting but when it's flash photography it tends to look pink on me. :/ I just bought bo10 and I still haven't tried it. I hope it's more of my match.


PJ Saturday, June 23, 2012

Hi Kat,

Thank you for your kind words! :)

I certainly agree with you that drugstore brands like Majolica Majorca and Lavshuca offer consistently good quality and very good value for money. I think BO10 should hopefully work better for you as it should be slightly more yellow-based and have less pink tone.

Thank you for posting your comment! :)


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