Looking Great For Your Final Date
It’s never too late to look great… so says Kotoko Sato, a trained make-up artist who has applied her talents to making the dead look alive. Sato has teamed up with Japanese cosmetics firm Falf Inc. to market Delfino (Italian for “dolphin”), a line of beauty products specially designed for the needs of the dead.
Of course, it’s not the dearly departed who are her customers. Morticians, funeral home workers and nurses are the ones showing interest in Sato’s cosmetics and even more importantly, how to use them effectively.
Delfino cosmetics differ from standard make-ups in that they contain silver compounds and titanium dioxide. These chemicals have antibacterial properties – a critical factor when dealing with the dead. According to spokesman Taro Koumi, Delfino is the first product of its kind to protect people from infection when they touch corpses, whether it’s applying their make-up or saying a final farewell.
Falf Inc. and Sato have sold around 300 sets of Delfino cosmetics at priced around ¥65,000 ($620) per set, with most of the buyers being morticians. Sato also conducts 3-day “Shigesho Gakko” (Funeral Makeup Academy) seminars four times annually to teach clients how to use the cosmetics.
“The bereaved families remember the faces of the departed for a long time. So I want them to look good,” explains Sato. “I am pleased when the family of the deceased says the person looks like they are sleeping.”