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Hamasaki Ayumi Last Summer Cruise

An announcement for the end of a short, liberal summer. Baring the body she has worked hard for everyday, putting on make-up to colour match with the strong sunlight… Such a summer makes one wish to taste a little more of its lingering memory. This issue’s cover girl is Hamasaki Ayumi-san. We tagged along as she did the photoshoot for her summer best album, released a few days ago. We chased after her summer.

“Summer is my image. I want to fully enjoy this season I’m in right now.”


“I want to do the things that I want to do, in a good way, because I don’t wish to regret”

As a summer girl, I wish to enjoy the present with all my might

At the beginning of 2012’s summer, whilst juggling the tight schedule of her nationwide tour, pop princess Hamasaki Ayumi was spotted at Minaminoshima. The reason for her presence was not for vacation or private matters, but to do filming for the summer best album, much-anticipated among fans. After 7 long years, we managed to tag along for a photoshoot. There, we chased after ayu’s summer beauty.

What is summer to ayu?

“I guess summer is me. (laugh) I have lots of summer releases, and people often tell me that I look like the summerish type. When summer comes, I often start to get busy, so I guess my own image of myself as a summer girl is strong too.”

For this issue, she utilized yellows, greens and other tropical colours for her make-up look. These few years, browns and beiges have dominated her look, so we enquired the reason behind such a choice.

“It’s the mood of the colours. Plus, my skin is darker now too. I guess tanned skin makes me want to use colours which I don’t normally use. I’ll probably go through the rest of summer with dark skin too. I don’t wish to become as tanned as I used to be, so there’ll be no suntan oil. But young girls who like to wear long-sleeved gloves and large hats, sit under umbrellas, or place cardigans over their shoulders, even at resorts; is that enjoying summer? (laugh) I may regret this someday, but I still want to enjoy summer. I feel that there’s no need to be so sensitive to the season.”

How do you take care of your body after suntanning?

“Of course, protection against UV rays is most basic, but I also take care to keep my skin moist. For example, when I get exposed to strong sunlight, I will put myself on a Vitamin C drip. I also suffer from skin irritation.”

Also, the live tour “~POWER OF MUSIC~”, which delivered her music and words after the disaster last year, seemed to have changed ayu too.

“I want to treasure the present and do the things that I want to do, in a good way, because I don’t wish to regret. All this while, whenever I go shopping in town or to Kanto’s beaches during summer, I sometimes do so alone so as not to inconvenience those friends who accompany me, or have them fuss over me. But now, I’m all “Let’s go!” (laugh) Sort of like worrying about a sunburn after you get one, not before.”

This time, ayu has released a huge summer collection.

“I’ve been thinking about doing a summer album since 10 years ago, but with the schedule of lives and normal album releases, the idea never materialized. However, I wish to create some memories of summer with the fans this time. So I got everyone to do a vote, and this album was created solely from those results. The staff and myself made new disoveries too, such as how everyone felt that “MOON” and “ANother song” are summer songs too, so it was really fun. I hope that when everyone listens to this album next summer or during any summer, they will remember this as the album they created together with ayu.”

Now, ayu’s nationwide tour, spanning 13 cities and 34 shows, is coming to an end. When asked about her future plans, she replied with a smile, “I’ll think about that when this tour has ended”.