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Philosophy and History


Pursuit of beauty through pearls
The MIKIMOTO Group continues to uphold the traditions started by the Pearl King, Koichi Mikimoto, who had a passion for beauty and was enthusiastic about conducting research on it. As a member of the MIKIMOTO Group, MIKIMOTO COSMETICS continues to focus on pearls and cosmetics with a scientific eye. As we believe that true human beauty is founded on the beauty of the skin cells themselves, we concentrate on fundamental research, such as biotechnology and dermatology, in order to create basic cosmetics of high quality that strike a good balance among effectiveness, utility, and safety.


Pearls, which are loved by women all over the world, were originally a fortuitous product of nature. Koichi Mikimoto, who started out selling marine products and eventually became enamored with the attraction of natural pearls, wondered if he could produce that jewel of the sea himself. After many long years of arduous trial and error, he finally became the first in the world to succeed at pearl cultivation on July 11, 1893.

1858 Koichi Mikimoto is born.
1888 He begins his attempt to cultivate pearls.
1893 He successfully cultivates pearls (5 semicircular pearls) for the first time in world history.
1896 He obtains a patent for hemispherical pearl cultivation.
1899 The MIKIMOTO Pearl Store is opened on Namiki Street in Ginza, Tokyo.
1905 He succeeds in cultivating round pearls.
1908 He obtains a patent for spherical pearl cultivation.
1940 Pearl production and sales are halted due to a ban on luxury items.
1943 Mikimoto Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. is established.
Manufacturing and sales of pearl calcium as a pharmaceutical product begin.
1951 MIKIMOTO Pearl Island is opened.
1954 Koichi Mikimoto passes away. He was posthumously awarded the Grand Cordon of the Order of the Sacred Treasure.
1963 Conchiolin from pearls is successfully blended into cosmetics.
1970 Sales of MIKIMOTO COSMETICS begin.
1985 Koichi Mikimoto is selected as one of the "10 best inventors in Japan" to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the patent system.
2000 Koichi Mikimoto is selected as one of the "30 best financial leaders of the 20th century in Japan (according to a survey carried out by Nihon Keizai Shimbun)."
2001 MIKIMOTO is ranked as one of the world's luxury brands by Women's Wear Daily in a report titled, "WWD LUXURY, THE 100."
  • Founder of the Company:Kokichi Mikimoto