Why Don't Americans Seem to Appreciate Japanese Fashion and Beauty Brands?

This morning, L'Oreal announced that, after years of not-so-stellar performance, it was pulling Shu Uemura out of the US market. (Too bad, because the
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This morning, L'Oreal announced that, after years of not-so-stellar performance, it was pulling Shu Uemura out of the US market. (Too bad, because the
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This morning, L'Oreal announced that, after years of not-so-stellar performance, it was pulling Shu Uemura out of the US market. (Too bad, because the beauty brand's face oils are amazing.)

This news arrives after the announcement last week that beloved Japanese department store Takashimaya will close its only US outpost.

And of course no one can forget the difficulty Yohji Yamamoto's had in the US, as well as abroad.

But think about it. Does your mom know who Rei Kawakubo is? Does your best friend from high school regularly stop by Pleats Please to supplement her work wardrobe?

Probably not. Which has us wondering: Why have Americans been so slow to embrace Japanese fashion and beauty?

The Japanese certainly don't have a difficult time wearing American brands--think about their obsession with Woolrich and Filson.

It seems like the only time Japanese style works in the US is when it's reinterpreted by a US designer, such as Marc Jacobs, or Gwen Stefani with her Harajuku Lovers line.