The International Cosmetic Acupuncture Summit, Tokyo 2016

I’ve recently returned from a wonderful trip to Japan to present and demonstrate Facial Enhancement Acupuncture (FEA) at the International Cosmetic Acupuncture Summit (ICAS) in Tokyo.

Our friend, FEA graduate and leading Japanese facial acupuncturist Takao Ueda (BIN) hosted the event on the 3rd/4th December to widen the scope of cosmetic acupuncture in Japan.

Top US cosmetic acupuncturist Mary Elizabeth Wakefield and her partner MichelAngelo were also invited to present. We all agreed that this event was the beginning of what looks to be an important step towards creating a world standard for cosmetic acupuncture (more on this in future posts). For now, here’s the diary I made of my visit, with pictures below:

Friday 2nd December – Asakusa, Nakamise Street and TOKYO SKYTREE

BIN took us all for a bus sightseeing tour today, stopping at Asakusa and Nakimise Street; a shopping arcade with a history dating back to the latter half of the 17th century. Our next stop was to see the impressive SkyTree Tower, where we enjoyed a delicious meal and took in the amazing view of the Tokyo skyline from the observatory; 350 metres above ground.

It’s great to see BIN, as it’s been six years since he trained with me back in Cornwall, UK. We discussed our plans for the Summit and everyone was excited about the upcoming event.

Saturday 3rd December – Imperial Hotel, Tokyo

The stage is set for the first International Cosmetic Acupuncture Summit (ICAS). We met with our interpreter and prepared for our presentations. BIN, Mary Elizabeth with MichelAngelo and I presented to over 100 delegates, each of us focussing on the latest skincare trends, treatment technology and our respective cosmetic acupuncture markets in Japan, USA and UK, both now and looking forward to the future.

We went on to an evening banquet with the attendees and had the opportunity for lots of photos with delegates, it was fantastic to meet everyone and discuss acupuncture practice in Japan. My large beard and arm tattoos also seemed to provide a talking point amongst the guests!

Sunday 4th December – Vision Center, Tokyo

We started early today with presentations in the morning. The aim was to expand on the main focus of the weekend; that cosmetic acupuncture is an holistic treatment, working on both the body and face as a whole system. With this in mind, I chose to talk about the Five Elements and their relationship to Facial Enhancement Acupuncture. We followed this in the afternoon by demonstrating our individual treatment protocols to groups of delegates, who rotated for each class.

I really enjoyed the experience, particularly meeting fellow acupuncturists and having the opportunity to bring FEA to Japan. The event was a real success, everyone seemed very enthusiastic about the topics covered and the future for cosmetic acupuncture both in Japan and around the world.

Monday 5th December – Kamakura

Our final day and we’re all visiting Kamakura, also known as the ‘Kyoto of the East’. The colours of the trees were breathtaking and it was a wonderful experience to visit the temples and shrines there. A highlight for me was seeing the ‘Kamakura Daibutsu’ or Great Buddha of Kamakura, which was created seven and a half centuries ago and stands 13.35 metres (almost 44 foot) tall.

To finish our trip in style, BIN and his wife Aiko took us to Gonpachi, otherwise known as the ‘Kill Bill Restaurant’, as Tarantino used it as the inspiration for the famous fight scene in his movie. The food there was some of the best I’ve ever tasted.

I feel very honoured to have been invited to participate in the Summit; BIN, Aiko and his team did a remarkable job in hosting and looking after me throughout my stay. It was wonderful to meet Mary Elizabeth Wakefield and MichelAngelo, discovering more about cosmetic acupuncture in the US and enjoying their company on this trip.

Now I’m home and it has been great to see all of the attendees’ photos from the event on social media, I also documented my trip in photographs over on Instagram and Facebook – it was so good to meet everybody. I will miss Tokyo, it’s a fascinating city and I hope to visit again. In the meantime we hope to schedule more conferences over the next few years so, most of all, I am excited for the future of cosmetic acupuncture.


Paul Adkins Lic.Ac., BA(Hons), FEA, MBAcC, MCAUK


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