woman wearing a skin care mask on her face

Photo: すしぱく on Pakutaso

Bright and Shiny – The Japanese Skin Care Routine

There are two main parts of the body that women obsess about taking care of: their hair and their skin. Women can spend hundreds, thousands even, on hair products, skin care, and other beauty products to keep their skin looking alive and beautiful. Japanese people have been amazingly successful at this. They tend to have flawless porcelain skin. This makes people wonder: what exactly did they do to themselves?

Skin Care Routine

These are some steps from Japanese skin care routines that they consider as the main steps:


Photo by Petr Kratochvil on PublicDomainPictures.net.

Cleansing is the most important part, especially if we have outdoor activities as part of our schedule. Imagine all the dirt, sweat and pollution that our skin is exposed to during the day. If we don’t clean our face properly, it will eventually lead to our skin breaking out. Japanese cleansers are usually oil based, so it can cleanse the skin without stripping the skin’s natural oil. Because some people like to double cleanse (to be extra sure that the dirt and makeup are all gone), make sure to use gentle cleanser to not irritate the skin.

A traditional way to clean skin in Japan was boiling rice water, then putting one's face above the steaming water with a towel hanging over the top of one's head. While this is rare to see nowadays, some women still practice it.

Skin Toner

Photo by Mj-bird on Wikimedia Commons.

Women, especially the ones in their teenage years, needs to treat their pores so the size and visibility can be diminished. Toner will tighten pores while still locking its moisture. Toners with alcohol should really be avoided because even though at first it will give the impression of tighter pores, what it really did is strip off the skin’s natural oil, which will cause the skin to produce even more oil and in the end it will create bigger pores.


Photo by 重村俊雄 on Pakutaso.

Women in Japan usually use serums to treat and moisturize their skin. They will use different types of serum to treat different problems. Like for example, if their main concern is to hydrate the skin then they will use a specific hydrating serum. Often, they will use more than just one type, although of course at different intervals. Giving your skin time to absorb the serum properly will do wonders, instead of just piling on all the products at once.

Sun Protection

Photo by Bill Branson (photographer) on Wikimedia Commons.

We can't block out the sun, but we can protect our skin from it. Sunscreen or sunblock now comes in varieties of shapes like spray, lotion and gel. SPF spells out Sun Protection Factor. Applying sunscreen before applying makeup, or before going out is very important. In Japan, women usually try their best to keep out of direct sunlight. This is because direct exposure to sunlight can result in dark freckle like spots and wrinkles. When buying a sunscreen, we should make sure to find one that protects against UVA and UVB. They rays are actually stronger in Japan in the spring than most other countries.

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