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Beauty Pop
by riseabove77 on July 31st, 2005, 1:34pm

Rating - 9.6 / 10.0

User rating of this review - 4.42 out of 5
Story/Plot - 5 out of 5
Characters - 5 out of 5
Drawing Style - 4 out of 5
Enjoyment - 5 out of 5
Overall - 5 out of 5

Click here for series information

Let me help you add some magic...

Gender roles are explored, distorted, and finally turned upside-down in this quirky, irreverent and absolutely hilarious manga. Kiri Koshiba is a fifteen-year-old high-school freshman with a rare talent. Her father owns Koshiba Beauty Salon, and she has become his unwilling heir. She has learned a thing or two from Pops, but has no intention of becoming a hairdresser herself. That is, until she encounters the S.P.

Narumi, Kai and Ochiai are second-year students and together these three make up the Scissors Project—widely known as S.P.—a makeover project that takes place at Ryokkufu High School. They select a lucky female student and give her a makeover in front of the entire school. All the girls who are selected have one thing in common: they are all pretty. Ugly girls need not apply.

Narumi Shoujo is vain, handsome, and temperamental; the heir to the great Shougo Beauty Salon Empire. Narumi’s extraordinary ambition is to become Japan’s number one hairstylist. He is obstinate and obnoxious, with one hell of a superiority complex, but don’t be fooled by his gruff exterior. Narumi isn’t completely without charm. He has a deeply hidden sweet side (yes, you have to plunge very deep) that he rarely shows. He’s a self-proclaimed hairstyling genius (“You should worship this golden right hand of mine!”) who has won every national hairstyling competition for seven years, with the notable exception of one that was wrested away from him by a mysterious little girl, number 17, whose memory haunts him to this very day. Kei is a bubble-gum-chewing, spiky-haired, Nike-wearing manicurist (If that isn’t enough to elicit a chuckle, then I don’t know what is). Ochiai, responsible for makeup and overall composition, is a bespectacled schemer, really the mastermind behind S.P., who maneuvers Kiri into having a makeover competition with Narumi.

Kiri decides to help a fellow classmate, Aoyama—who has been rejected by long-time crush Ochiai—“add a little magic.” Perhaps one of the greatest moments is when painfully-shy Aoyama, post-makeover, delivers to Ochiai a crushing set-down when she tells him that she really must learn to be a better judge of character. True, her new-found beauty gives her the confidence to speak her mind to Ochiai, but it is at this crucial moment that mangaka Kiyoko Arai really drives home her point: beauty is only skin-deep and what really matters is not outside appearance. What is more telling is that Aoyama chooses to return to the way she was before the makeover. When questioned by Ochiai as to the reason, she responds by saying she was uncomfortable with the new her. It’s nice to be pretty, but don’t sacrifice who you really are to attain it.

On the surface, Beauty Pop is a light-hearted comedy. If you look closer, you realize that it breaks down gender-role stereotypes and ridicules the beauty standards that rule our society, and explores how those standards often warp self-perception. Beauty is, after all, in the eye of the beholder. A noble sentiment, most eloquently realized in Beauty Pop.

Beauty Pop by Kiyoko Arai
Review by riseabove77
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No Subject by mayhem-x-eternity on July 12th, 2012, 11:32pm Rating: 5

I loved it! READ HERE:
:) by czartchiee on February 27th, 2011, 12:10pm Rating: 4.8

GREAT review! I especially enjoyed the fact that you didnt add any spoilers, but dove deep enough into the story that it would most definitely elicit curiousness from any reader to start "Beauty Pop".
Awesome job!
Excellent Insights! by Alaena Night on February 1st, 2011, 10:34pm Rating: 5

This 5 is to balance out the unfair "1" this review received. You have wonderful insights into the series. Your analysis is spot-on, and I enjoyed reading your impressions. Thanks for sharing!
beauty pop by zizzle1221 on September 10th, 2009, 6:27pm Rating: 5

this is such a cute book! i automatically fell in love with it by the first chapter. i especially love the romance towards the ending <3 . read this book you will love it!
cool by killercatkat on November 4th, 2007, 1:56pm Rating: 5

this story is really good i would totally recommend it 2 someone but god i wish the next volume would come out already
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