"All the makeup in the world won't make a difference without great skincare." – Khloe Kardashian
We cannot help but agree with Khloe here! Taking good care of your skin is more important than covering it up. A healthy skin glows from within, radiating confidence. To achieve it, you must:
- Be consistent
- Choose the right routine
- Use the right products
But hey, not all of us have the patience to go through a 10-step skincare routine. So what do we do here? How do you get flawless, clear skin with an easy routine? The answer lies in the concept of Japanese skincare.
Touted for promoting mochi skin (AKA soft, smooth, bouncy skin), Japanese skincare is your BFF for achieving clear skin. Unlike extensive routines, J-beauty is simple to follow. Yet very effective!
What is the secret behind the effectiveness of such a simple routine? Read what follows next carefully!
What Makes J-Beauty So Effective?
Moreover, their application is inspired by traditional Japanese beauty practices (you'll see what they're!). These practices recognize the connection between your inner and outer selves to work towards holistic beauty. As a result, the Japanese skincare routine can do more in less.
And now that you know why the Japanese skincare routine is your skin's new BFF, we have some Japanese beauty secrets to share! Let's see what they are.
1. Double Cleansing
There's no skincare without cleansing. In fact, it's a step that finds a special place in every routine. But when it comes to Japanese skincare, they don't believe in just cleansing their skin. They believe in double-cleansing it. Here's why.
Our skin goes through a lot during the day. Dust, grime, oil, makeup, pollution, free radicals—you name it. All of these accumulate over the skin, heavily clogging the pores. Result? Acne, dryness, dullness, and more.
Double cleansing helps you thoroughly cleanse your skin without stripping its natural oils. As its name suggests, it happens in two steps:
- The first step is to clean away the dirt and makeup using an oil-based cleanser that does not foam.
- The next step is to use a water-based cleanser. It removes any remaining dirt and hydrates the skin. This ensures the process does not strip your skin's natural oil and moisture.
ILEM JAPAN offers 4 cleansers for a rejuvenating cleansing experience:
- Gentle Cleanser: Gel-based cleanser to cleanse your skin effectively, leaving it soft, supple, and glowing.
- Mild Cleanser: Gel-based cleanser with a low pH to wash away dirt, fight aging, and boost collagen.
- Purifying Cleanser: Clay-based cleanser to remove all impurities and help clear pores and dead skin cells.
- Deep Cleanser: Gel-like formula to rebuild skin barrier, unclog pores, and calm inflamed skin.
2. Green Tea Infusion
Try googling "Superhero ingredients for skin," and we are pretty sure you will find Green Tea in the list. Because it DESERVES to be there! We'll tell you why!
Green tea is high in polyphenols, which gives this ingredient its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. It helps to fight free radicals that damage your cells, leading to aging skin. Furthermore, it reduces redness due to irritation or inflammation, soothing your skin.
Green tea also regulates your sebum (oil) production. Thus reducing the risks of acne breakout. The Epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) found in green tea also helps with rejuvenation. It repairs damaged cells and promotes the formation of new ones. Thereby keeping your skin youthful and free from signs of aging. No wonder they call it a 'Superhero.'
And the best part? You can include it in your Japanese skincare routine in many ways. Think of a DIY green tea face mask, eye bag, or green tea-infused toners, moisturizers, and cleansers.
3. Sun Protection
We all know about the damaging effect of harsh sun rays on our skin. But do we actively do something to prevent it? Well, not all of us. However, in Japan, that's not the case. The Japanese are aware of skin damage due to the sun's harmful UV rays. As a result, they take sun protection very seriously.
But here's the thing. Their sunscreens are different from your standard sunscreens.
- They offer protection against both UVA and UVB rays.
- Often double as primers, moisturizers, and/or serums to keep your skin hydrated.
- They are lightweight and sink quickly into the skin without leaving a white cast.
When choosing a sunscreen, opt for the highest SPF and PA rating. The higher the SPF, the longer it takes for your skin to burn. Similarly, the higher the PA, the more protected your skin is.
Also, look for what kind of sunscreen it is. While the Japanese use chemical and physical sunscreen, opting for a physical one is preferable. They reflect UV rays away from your skin, unlike chemical sunscreens that absorb it. Furthermore, they don't sink in and clog your pores. They sit on your skin and act as shields.
What else can you do to prevent sun damage? Wear hats and full clothing to reduce exposure to the sun like the Japanese do!
4. Gentle Exfoliation
Japanese skincare routine focuses on achieving smoother, brighter, and more youthful skin. And one way to achieve it is by exfoliating your skin.
Over time, the dead skin cells start accumulating on your skin. They clog your pores, increasing oil secretion. Thus leading to breakouts and dull, lifeless skin.
Exfoliation removes the dead cells and unveils the fresh new cells below. Thus allowing other products to penetrate better for glowing skin. However, harsh exfoliation can damage your skin. It can cause redness, dryness, and irritation. This is where the Japanese concept of gentle exfoliation enters the picture.
Gentle exfoliation makes use of mild exfoliants like rice bran or enzyme-based cleansers. Such exfoliants do not rupture your skin's protective barrier or irritate it. Instead, they leave your skin feeling more toned and softer. Like our Konjac Sponge and Face & Body Scrub with gentle Konjac beads for gentle exfoliation, collagen boost, and toned skin!
5. Essence and Serums
What's skincare without hydration? And for a practice that heavily focuses on moisturization for plump skin, essence, and serum are just non-negotiable. But hey, like all the other Japanese skincare secrets mentioned here, this one is different, too!
Yes, the Japanese focus a lot on moisturizers. But they don't go all in at once. They like layering lightweight moisturizers for double impact. Now, if you are new to skincare, it's easy to confuse essences and serums. So here's a quick breakdown.
- Lotions: These are often called toners in Japan. They typically have a water-like consistency and are not astringent in nature. Instead, they are softening. We offer 3 toners namely Soothing Toner, Clarifying Toner, and Balancing Toner for hydrating skin.
- Essence: Popularly called 'Biyoueki,' an essence is neither a lotion nor a serum. It's the best of both worlds. They're lightweight, like lotions, and contain a more concentrated combination, like a serum. They're used to hydrate your skin further and achieve a clear complexion. Furthermore, they offer anti-aging benefits and balance your skin's pH level.
- Serum: A serum is slightly thicker than essence and more concentrated to tackle specific concerns. For instance, our Brightening serum with Vitamin C targets dull skin. In contrast, our Hydrating serum with Hyaluronic acid targets intense hydration.
Some of the popular ingredients found in Japanese essence and serums include:
- Hyaluronic acid
- Vitamin C
- Aloe Vera
6. Minimalistic Approach
Less is more. And this rule applies to Japanese skincare as well. The Japanese follow a shorter but particular routine compared to other skincare regimens.
It prioritizes necessary steps with high-quality Japanese skincare products and natural ingredients. The use of fewer products allows better layering. Moreover, it lets the products seep deeper into the skin and work harmoniously. Finally, it allows the skin to breathe, feel nourished, and maintain its natural balance.
Simply put, it takes a quality over quantity approach to truly nurture your skin from within! And our bentos are the perfect example of quality over quantity. And the good part? We have 7 bentos for you to choose from:
- Hydrating Asa bento
- Bo-di bento
- Refreshing Asa bento
- Hydrating Yoru bento
- Refreshing Yoru bento
- Men-zu bento
- Fe-su bento
7. Facial Massage Techniques
There's no better way to relax than a Japanese facial massage or a spa session. Trust us; they're popular worldwide and for all the right reasons!
Facial massages promote healthy skin while relaxing tensed muscles. Moreover, it enhances the impact of products, allowing them to be fully absorbed. The stimulation also promotes blood circulation and reduces the appearance of acne. It's like a booster for your overall skin health!
Now, there are many facial massage techniques that you can adopt. So, what are some of the common Japanese facial massage techniques? Let's see!
Facial tapping is one of the easiest massage techniques to do. It's associated with better sleep, less tension, and slowed aging. In this technique, you tap on different points on your face to bring the blood flow back to baseline. Thus telling your body that it's okay to relax.
The Tsuboki Massage is a technique that relaxes and energizes you inside out. It uses the acupressure points to influence the body's energy flow. It works on many levels at the same time for different benefits.
For instance, it improves complexion and lymph flow at a superficial level. At deeper, muscular, and meridian levels, it balances overall health. And at the lymphatic level, it removes the body's metabolic waste.
In Japanese, 'Shiatsu' means finger pressure. In this technique, you massage with different body parts. These include
Here, you press specific points in your body to release tension and fatigue. It unblocks qi (the vital force of life) for better health and well-being. It claims to help with many issues, including:
- Painful muscles
- Skin conditions
- Body aches
So, if there's one thing that can help you achieve glowing, youthful skin, it's a facial massage! And who will tell you the step-by-step process to indulge in a relaxing massage at home? It's us! So, without further ado, here's a step-by-step process for the ultimate relaxing retreat!
Facial Massage At Home
- Start by cleansing your face and hands.
- Next, take a small amount of serum, oil, or a lotion so your fingers and hand glide smoothly.
- Start with massaging your face with gentle pressure. Repeat each action 5 times or 20-30 seconds.
- Rub your fingers in a circular motion on your temples.
- Next, massage the sides of your face. Using your palms, start at your chin and move towards your forehead. Then, slide your hands back towards your chin.
- Press your fingers in the center of your brows. Then, gently move them toward your hairline. Next, move them towards your temples.
- Put your finger in the middle of your brows. Apply gentle pressure while moving your finger clockwise and anticlockwise.
- Next, take two fingers and place them under your cheekbones. Then, gently glide it toward your temple.
- Come down to your chin. Start at the center, gently pinch your skin as you move from your chin to your ears.
- Next, massage your neck. Start at the base and move towards your jawline. Use your palms for this.
- Finally, place gentle taps with your fingertips all over your skin and neck.
8. Sheet Masks
They say, 'Work hard, Mask harder.' And we fully support this! Sheet masks are that one practice where every moment becomes rejuvenating.
Sheet masks work quickly and effectively to give your skin a much-needed boost. They offer a unique way to nourish your skin with active ingredients for immediate effect.
Their occlusive nature creates a barrier that effectively locks in serum to address specific concerns. For instance, hydration, brightening, anti-aging, acne, etc. No wonder they're so popular in Japanese skincare routines and a must in your weekly routine!
Because let's be honest. Who does not like a shortcut to glowing skin?
9. Hydration from Within
True beauty radiates from within. It's a reflection of your inner well-being and positivity. This is why hydration from within happens to be one of the most essential Japanese skincare secrets.
If you think about this a little more, you will realize that this thought is rooted in science. Whatever you eat has a direct impact on your body and skin. For instance, high consumption of sugar results in inflammation. This, in turn, makes your skin appear red and dull. Furthermore, it breaks down collagen in your body, leading to early signs of aging.
Similarly, consuming water-rich foods makes your skin look more hydrated and plump. For instance, cucumbers and watermelon. Besides high water content, cucumbers are a great source of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. This makes them ideal food for improving your body's water intake. Watermelons, too, have a high water content. Besides this, they are high in Vitamin A and Vitamin C.
Since the Japanese aim for holistic well-being, a healthy diet and lifestyle become essential for flawless skin. Some of the ways you can keep yourself hydrated from the inside are:
- Drinking adequate water throughout the day.
- Adding water-rich foods into your diet, such as fruits (watermelon, oranges, cucumber) and vegetables (lettuce, celery, zucchini).
- Reducing the intake of sugary beverages and excessive caffeine as they can contribute to dehydration. Instead, opt for herbal teas and infused water.
- Including potassium-rich food in your diet. For example, bananas and sweet potatoes.
- Balancing alcohol intake with extra water to avoid dehydration.
- Limiting intake of salty food.
- Getting a good night's sleep to regulate fluid balance.
10. Beauty Sleep and Relaxation
You have to give it to the Japanese for being so scientific in their approach to holistic health. As we know, sleep plays a crucial role in your overall well-being. Poor sleep may result in dark circles, fine lines, pale skin, and more. So, to have flawless skin, you must sleep well and use under-eye cream to get rid of dark circles.
The Japanese follow a very minimalist approach to quality sleep. Unlike the West, the Japanese do not have beds. They sleep on futons and tatami mats for comfortable sleep. Tatami mats are traditionally woven straw mats that are placed on the floor. On top of it, they place lightweight mattresses (Shikifutons), kakefuton (traditional Japanese duvets), and sobakawa (Buckwheat Hull Pillows).
Additionally, they focus on the bedroom design. You are likely to find calming elements in their sleeping space. For instance, plants, flowers, and wooden or bamboo furniture. They also use sleeping aids for a restful sleep. These include the following:
- Herbal teas
- Aromatherapy oils
- White noise machines
- Meditation apps
All these aids help in muscle relaxation, preparing them for a good night's sleep.
We are completely in awe of these Japanese skincare secrets. J-beauty goes beyond products to include complementary practices like healthy diets, relaxation, and facial massages. And that's the beauty of it. It is simple, comprehensive, and easy to follow. Which is why you must give it a try if you haven't. And if you are wondering where to get these J-beauty products, look no further!
ILEM JAPAN is your one-stop shop for vegan skincare products that surpass Japanese beauty standards. We not only house Japanese skincare for oily skin but also stock skincare products for dry skin.
So, why wait? Try out these fantastic J-beauty products from one of the best Japanese skincare brands today!