What has always been admired about Japanese culture is its simplicity, perfection, and the design of everything they touch. Skincare is no exception to this rule.
In Japan, skincare and beauty are a philosophy that draws inspiration from nature.
The Japanese skincare routine is known to be gentle, comprehensive, and effective.
It consists of several steps that aim to hydrate, nourish, and protect the skin. It is ideal for simplifying your routine, sticking to it, and reducing the need for makeup.
Here is an overview of the 4 basic steps of the Japanese skincare routine:
Step 1: Pre-cleansing
This doesn't mean using the same product twice, but using two different products that deeply cleanse accumulated impurities and dirt. The first cleanser is often an oil-based cleanser to remove makeup and daily sunscreen. Geishas have been using oil for over half a century to remove their white powder and lipstick.
Step 2: Cleansing
The Japanese ritual usually involves using a foaming cleanser that effectively unclogs pores, allowing active ingredients to penetrate better during hydration.
Step 3: Pre-hydration
In addition to double cleansing, the Japanese skincare routine requires a double hydration process to lock in maximum moisture. This double hydration routine involves using a liquid lotion or serum followed by a final moisturizing cream. According to the Japanese, using only a moisturizer after cleansing is not optimal because the skin is not able to fully absorb the moisturizer when it is dry or has just been cleansed. By first using a liquid lotion, the skin is softened, hydrated, and prepared to absorb the moisturizing cream.
Step 4: Serum
Serums are used to target specific skin issues such as wrinkles and acne. Japanese serums are often rich in antioxidants and natural ingredients such as vitamin C and green tea extract.
Step 5: Moisturization - The Cream
Creams are used to deeply hydrate and nourish the skin. Japanese creams are often lightweight and non-greasy to avoid overburdening the skin. They often contain ingredients such as hyaluronic acid, vitamin E, and camellia oil. This step adds a second layer of maximum hydration, helping to repair the skin's natural protective barrier and leaving it soft and smooth.
Step 6 (optional but essential):
Sun protection is an essential step in the Japanese skincare routine. Japanese people are very aware of the harmful effects of the sun on the skin and use sunscreen products throughout the year.
With simplicity at its core, the Japanese skincare routine promises clean and hydrated skin.