Aesop Shibuya
by Torafu Architects


A blackened steel counter continues into a mirrored wall in this Aesop skincare shop by Japanese studio Torafu Architects (+ slideshow).

Aesop Shibuya by Torafu Architects

Torafu Architects installed a mirrored wall with a protruding counter in the long narrow shop for hair and skincare brand Aesop in Shibuya, Tokyo.

Aesop Shibuya by Torafu Architects

The dark counter appears to extend into the reflected space, whilst a cubbyhole of products interrupts the mirrored wall.

Aesop Shibuya by Torafu Architects

Narrow windows along the top of the opposite wall were revealed during the renovation process, allowing light to filter down into the slender interior.

Aesop Shibuya by Torafu Architects

Rectangles of brown glass surround the doorway, referencing the trademark brown bottles that line the walls of the store housed in blackened steel shelves.

Aesop Shibuya by Torafu Architects

An elongated demonstration sink sits just inside the entrance, also made from blackened steel, with a mirrored splashback from which simple garden taps protrude.

Aesop Shibuya by Torafu Architects

Reclaimed timber flooring marks the entrance to the shop and the remainder of the space is finished with sisal carpet.

Aesop Shibuya by Torafu Architects

Torafu Architects also designed Aesop's Shin-Marunouchi store, in which chunky chipboard surfaces have been sanded and stained to look like marble.

Aesop Shibuya by Torafu Architects

Earlier this month we featured Aesop's East Hampton store which has shelves supported by dowels slotted into pegboard walls.

Aesop Shibuya by Torafu Architects

We also previously interviewed the founder of Aesop, who explained why no two Aesop stores are the same. Read the interview »

Aesop Shibuya by Torafu Architects

See all our stories about Aesop interiors »
See all our stories about shops »

Here's more information from Torafu:

For Australian skin care brand Aesop, we planned the interior and exterior of the new store on Meiji Street in Shibuya. The store is located on the first floor of a three-storey building situated between two taller buildings; the space is long and slender – 2.6m in width, 7.8m in depth and 3.9m in maximum height. We aimed to work with these proportions to provide a welcoming and intimate space for communication with customers.

The windows on one side wall, which appeared after demolishing of the former store’s interior, were the key for the design. On the wall opposite, we mounted a mirror to enhance scenery, extensity and light. The window located at the front of the store below has brown glass to represent Aesop's traditional containers, and is incorporated in the shelves. In this way, the window is extended and the shelves are considered as a frame.

In order to limit the variety of the materials used, the shelves and counter are finished in blackened steel, which is also the basis for storage doors assimilated into the mortar wall or mirror wall; the basin that is Aesop's feature is set near the entrance to effect a good view from the passage.

The door of the entrance and the facade sign are created from glass. The latter is composed of brown glass and corrugated glass, like patchwork – its colour and transparent appearance evoking Aesop's brand image. A luminous sign on the wall and a selection of plants lend an outdoor atmosphere. As you move further into the interior, the floor texture changes from old wood to sisal carpet, subtly emphasising the transition from the busy street to the quietude of the store.

  • Max

    Where did the camera go in the mirror reflection?

  • Marty

    So, where is the camera in that shot of the mirroed wall?

  • hatim

    Smart and beautiful.

  • Giancarlo

    There’s a hole in that part of the mirror and there are shelves inside. It’s just a good interior design and a good photographer that knows where to put the camera.

  • Desk

    Those claiming to be smart about the mirrored wall camera not being there are indeed not observant enough. That’s a niche with shelves in that mirrored wall, there’s nothing to reflect off that. Can’t imagine replying to such posts! Argh.

    This is one of the most lacking Aesop boutiques I’ve seen so far. Very bland feeling.

  • Fezer

    Over-priced shampoo paid for the design.

  • Dave Judge

    Unfortunately I think this is way too corporate for Aesop. It lacks the “humanity” and originality of almost all the other stores. I hope this isnt where Aesop are going or they will loose the plot of their unique brand.