Japanese Skincare Routine

  • By Alison Falk

  • June 30, 2020

Japanese Skincare Routine

Over the last decade or so, we have seen Asian beauty trends make their way into mainstream Western trends. Within Asian beauty, Japanese skincare is one of the most prominent and talked-about subjects, likely due to the fact that the regimens have *many* steps, yet the results are incredible. Japanese skincare ingredients are mainly gentle and nourishing for the skin. Check out YRH’s rundown of a Japanese skincare routine you can introduce into your current regimen!

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Don’t Just Cleanse, Double Cleanse

Cleansing ourselves is something we’d all do well to remember, not just mentally, but for our skin as well. Double cleansing is an important step when it comes to Japanese skincare. Double cleansing refers to using an oil or a balm to remove your makeup, dirt, oil, and other grime that stays on your skin all day. The purpose of an oil is that it is gentle on the skin, and it truly breaks down all of the oils that may cause damage to our skin barrier if not cleansed properly. Oil can sound scary, but remember, oil breaks down oil.

Even though your skin may feel makeup and dirt-free after this first cleanse, the next step is to use a water-based cleanser. Japanese face washes are often foamy in texture and feel whipped and creamy. This second step will truly take the rest of your makeup, dirt, and grime off of your face. The Japanese skincare philosophy focuses on cleaning the skin by being gentle and nourishing. Instead of harsh, rough exfoliants, the double cleanse gently and effectively removes impurities from our skin.

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Essence and Toner

We have all heard of toner by now: many tout it as an important step in our skincare routines. In Japanese skincare, essence/toner is a must. Essence and toner are both essentially the same thing. The point of including an essence or toner into your routine is to hydrate your skin with a lightweight serum so that it absorbs into the skin faster before moisturizing. Also, no need to waste a cotton pad! The best way to apply is by pouring a few drops into your hands, and patting the product gently into your skin.

Face Masks Packed with Serums

Cleansing face masks are rising in popularity, but Japanese sheet masks are the best—probably because the face mask concept actually originated in Japan. Sheet masks are serum-packed cloths that frame the entire face; users typically leave them on for at least 10-20 minutes. The serums absorb deep into your skin, preparing your face for your next step. Usually, the serums in sheet masks are super hydrating, which is something we can all use a little more of. After taking off your mask, use the excess serum down your neck and décolletage, as well as the backs of your hands. There are so many Japanese sheet masks out there, as well as ones with cute or “kawaii” patterns and designs.

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To seal in all of the steps and to ensure optimal plumpness, moisturizer is the last step in Japanese skincare. Moisturizer locks everything in—it’s beneficial when it comes to reducing fine lines, and, overall, it protects the skin’s natural oil barrier. Moisturizer is always a necessary step, no matter your skin type. Japanese moisturizers tend to be very light and gentle on the skin, especially because the humidity in Japan can be a bit intense.

For some, the Japanese skincare routine can seem time-consuming, but each step benefits the skin in a different way. Another Japanese beauty tip is to wear SPF every single day in order to prevent aging. The goal of Japanese skincare is to have beautiful, supple skin that you are proud to show off without makeup. Less is more, so use your products sparingly and with purpose. Japanese ingredients are gentle, and will leave your skin feeling good. No matter what sort of condition your skin is in (dry, oily, acne-prone, and beyond), be proud of your skin, and love it. It is important to build a loving relationship with your own skin. Let us know if you incorporate any of these products into your daily routine at @yourherelive!

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What element of the Japanese skincare routine would you add into your own regimen?