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by MrAJCosplay,

I Want You to Make Me Beautiful! – The Complete Manga Collection


I Want You to Make Me Beautiful! – The Complete Manga Collection Review

Nishimura Kanna is an office worker who recently broke up with her cheating boyfriend, only for him to insult her looks as the cause of his infidelity. With her pride damaged, Nishimura plans to make herself more beautiful and seeks the help of her company's new co-worker, Ichikawa Yuzuki. This gorgeous, androgynous man agrees to help her, but he also needs some help. In an attempt to ward off co-workers who keep confessing to him, Ichikawa wants Nishimura to pretend to be his girlfriend, but how long will that last when the two also seem to have some history with each other?

I Want You To Make Me Beautiful was translated by Molly Lee and lettered by J. Piechowiak.


I Want You to Make Me Beautiful! is a simple story that does everything it sets out to do. At its heart, it's a straightforward story about moving on from the pain of a bad breakup and reinventing yourself into something better. The story arc is made apparent within the first three pages of the volume as our protagonist breaks up with a cheating ex, only to have the situation framed where she was left to feel as though the cheating was her fault. She is devalued to her lowest point and only seeks to get more beautiful as a means of getting back at him. You see that setup and immediately know the book's resolution before the new love interest even makes its way onto the page.

If there's one major complaint I can give I Want You to Make Me Beautiful! is it's incredibly committed to its bit. There are no twists or surprises. I, for one, do not believe that a story needs to have twists for the sake of having them and keeping everything organic. The problem with overly committing to such a simple setup is that the story can sometimes feel like it's on autopilot. When you consider that the entire story is self-contained in this one volume, you can't help but go through a checklist in your head, especially if you are overly familiar with romantic comedies or young adult slice-of-life.

However, suppose I look at this story on its own terms. In that case, the benefit of being committed to such a simple setup is that the story knows exactly what it needs to do to invoke the maximum emotional response for this type of story. I would argue that it achieves that flawlessly. I like these characters even if I've seen them a million times before because Nishimura's journey is believable. The confusion she goes through when trying to figure out exactly who she is trying to be beautiful for is well done, and the conclusion she reaches by the end feels like a proper payoff to the situation she was initially in.

Her chemistry with Ichikawa is also solid, albeit a little bit rushed. The whole story takes place within a month. Things could've been a bit stronger if we were allowed to stretch out that development over a slightly longer period. However, it still works since the book discusses moving onto new relationships too quickly. The idea is that regardless of how things might look from the outside, as long as you are confident in your own decision, whether to improve yourself or pursue somebody else, everything should be fine.

I like how Ichikawa represents the opposite side of that, as a love interest. Whereas Nishimura is trying to figure out what she wants, Ichikawa knows what he wants and has known what he has wanted for a long time. He knows what he wants so much that he often has to hold himself back from initiating the many spicy scenes throughout the book. The chemistry between our two leads is excellent, and again, it makes me wish there were more scenes of them just being together as a couple. I like how I Want You to Make Me Beautiful! acknowledges that almost every physical interaction in this book is consensual and when a line is crossed.

The spicy scenes are solid but a little short. There isn't much nudity portrayed, and the foreplay seems to receive more screen time than the actual sex. The sex scenes act more like conclusions after every character reaches a definitive point in their character growth throughout the story. While it's not the most visually stimulating, it still feels rewarding. Everything flows very easily and is very easy to understand.

Overall, if you're someone who doesn't read a lot of slice-of-life or romance stories, I think you would get more out of this book than someone like me. I acknowledge the story's strong points and could even see myself revisiting this down the road when I feel the urge to read this particular type of story. It is incredibly competent and has a solid setup and execution for its characters and themes. Moving on from difficult situations can be challenging, and sometimes, you need to take a long look at yourself to understand what you want out of life. But much like this book, sometimes the answer can be straightforward, and like this story, it's worth relishing those simple answers from time to time.

Overall : B
Story : B
Art : B

+ Good emotional setup and payoff, our two leads work well as a couple and as two sides of the same theme
Sex scenes and time spent on everything is too short, story sometimes feels like it's checking off boxes

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Production Info:
Story & Art: Cocoa
Licensed by: Seven Seas Entertainment

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I Want You to Make Me Beautiful! (manga)

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