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Japanese Beauty Secrets for a Glowing Youthful Skin

Published : June 12, 2024 7 mins read Updated On : Jun 12, 2024

When you think about Japan the first few images that pop in your head are a land filled with cherry blossoms, cosplayers and people with flawless skin.

Japanese culture is embedded with discipline and clean aesthetics, which is reflected in their skincare products as they’re made with only natural ingredients and have the simplest skincare routines that are easy to follow and maintain.

If you are wondering what the big secret is behind the Japanese skincare then we’re here to unpack it for you! We’ve compiled the ultimate guide to the ancient secrets of Japanese skincare.

● What is Japanese skincare?
● Benefits of Japanese skincare
● Japanese step-by-step skincare routine

What is Japanese skincare?

If you are remotely familiar with Japanese culture or have been to Japan yourself, a mere walk down the street of Osaka or Kumamota, and you will find drug stores filled with skincare products like toner, moisturiser etc.

They are very particular about their skincare, which is not just a passing trend but a practice that is deeply embedded into their culture. Japanese skin care has inspired the world and has become a popular reference for all the beauty products and brands to have more natural ingredients.

Japanese skincare, also popularly known as J-beauty, emphasises having cosmetics with the most simple and natural ingredients which sets them apart from others.

They have a very holistic approach towards skincare which means it is not focused on treating a specific skin concern, but rather on promoting overall well-being from the inside out. Hence, they draw inspiration from traditional Japanese beauty rituals and follow the motto “prevention is better than cure.”

The Japanese refer to their skin as “mochi-hada” or “rice cake skin” which is a reference to an ultra-soft and plump dessert in Japan. The concept of ultra-soft skin in Japanese skincare is recurring, which is reflected in their skincare as they focus on nourishment, hydration and moisturization of the skin.

Benefits of Japanese skincare

1. Simplicity

The core of Japanese skincare routines is minimalistic and high-quality products centric. The simplicity of the regime makes it easier to follow and maintain a consistent skincare routine.

2. Natural Ingredients

Japanese skincare incorporates the most natural ingredients than any other skincare brand in the industry.

They have ingredients with benefits such as:

● Green tea- prevents wrinkles, and provides intense hydration & nourishment.
● Rice bran- clears the skin naturally making it more soft and hydrated.
● Seaweed- soothes skin, prevents acne, is anti-inflammatory, and reduces signs of ageing.

3. Hydration

Hydration is an essential part of Japanese skincare.

A study was conducted on a cream with a formula that closely mimicked the skin’s natural moisturization and it showed that it significantly improved the skin’s hydration. (1)

Hence, Japanese skincare includes products with ingredients that are extremely hydrating in nature such as rice bran, tea seed oil, cherry blossom, green tea, reishi and plum fruit extract.

4. Sun Protection

According to research Japanese use sunscreen to “prevent blemishes” or for ageing rather than to avoid skin cancer risk from UV exposure, the low risk of skin cancer amongst the Japanese could be a contributing factor to it. (2)

Japanese sunscreens are not only effective against UV rays but are also:

● Waterproof and sweat-resistant
● Infused with collagen or hyaluronic acid
● Gentle ingredients and fragrance-free

5. Gentle Approach

Japanese skincare is focused on ingredients that are gentle and non-irritating, making it suitable for all sensitive skin types.

A study was conducted to study the low irritant skincare cosmetics, with 20 Japanese subjects with dry skin that required moisture retention identified by a dermatologist. The subjects used the skincare product for moisturization twice a day for four consecutive weeks. It was found that after four weeks their skin dryness, itchiness, and redness were balanced out along with the water/oil content of the skin. It proved effective for all skin types. (3)

6. Brightening and Even Skin Tone

Several Japanese skincare products contain ingredients such as sake and rice bran, that contain kojic acid which is used for skin lightening and is effective in treating skin conditions such as scars, sun damage and age spots.

Kojic acid has lightening agents that affect melanin production which brightens the skin, fades dark spots and helps with hyperpigmentation.

7. Prevention and Maintenance

Japanese skincare is all about prevention rather than just treating skin concerns.

By maintaining a consistent skincare routine with easy, natural and non-invasive skin care they aim to prevent skin issues before they arise.

8. Holistic Lifestyle

Japanese skin care is not just about what cosmetic products to use right, but healing you from the inside out.

This is why skin care practices also encourage you to have a balanced diet, get sufficient sleep, focus on stress management, and stay hydrated, which contribute to overall skin health.

Japanese skincare step-by-step

Step 1: Double Cleansing

Diving right into cleansing with an oil-based cleanser to remove the first layer of makeup, sunscreen and excess sebum. Massage the cleanser into your dry skin and then rinse

Follow up with a gentle foam cleanser to remove any impurities left behind from the first wash. Rub it thoroughly then rinse and dry.

Japanese Beauty Secrets for a Glowing Youthful Skin

Step 2: Exfoliation

This step is not recommended every day but 1-2 times a week to remove any dead skin cells and to achieve brighter skin. You can choose an exfoliator that works for your skin from a physical exfoliator, or a gentle beads exfoliator.

Gently massage it onto your damp skin, then rinse it off.

Step 3: Toner

Time to get in the toner for hydration and to balance the skin's pH levels to prepare it for better absorption of the subsequent products.

Pour a small amount onto your hands or use a cotton pad to gently run it onto your skin.

Step 4: Essence

Essence is a lightweight, watery product that is extremely hydrating and nourishing for your skin.

Pour a few drops onto your palms then gently pat it onto your face and neck. This will help improve your skin texture and boost moisture levels.

Step 5: Serum

Serums are subjective, you need to choose the one that targets your skin concerns whether it is anti-ageing, brightening or hydration.

Apply a small amount onto your fingertips then gently massage it into your skin.

Step 6: Sheet Mask

Choosing a sheet mask with the perfect hydrating ingredients will help give your skin the extra boost of nourishment every day.

Align the face mask onto your face through the hole positioned for your eyes, nose and mouth then leave it on for about 15-20 minutes, remove and if there’s remaining essence just gently pat it onto your skin.

Step 7: Moisturiser

Always moisturise to lock in all the goodness from the products used in earlier steps.

Choose a moisturiser that fits your skin type and gently massage it onto your face and neck using upward motion.

Step 8: Eye Cream

Eye creams help hydrate and protect the skin and help reduce the appearance of fine lines and dark circles.

Take a small amount of eye cream onto your fingertips and gently pat it around the delicate eye area.

Step 9: Sunscreen

Never leave your home without applying sunscreen!

The last step is to lock in all the layers with sunscreen. Use the three-finger method to measure out the sunscreen and apply it to your face. Don’t forget your neck too!


Japanese skin care beauty is more than just their products or ingredients, it's about the spirituality of wanting to heal from the inside out, creating a balance between mind, and body.

Japanese skincare uses simple and natural ingredients that help you stay consistent without irritating your skin. Try following the simplified Japanese skincare routine to experience the results yourself today!


1. How to make Japanese rice water for the skin?

To make Japanese rice water for your skin:

● rinse 1/2 cup of uncooked Japanese rice and soak it in 2 cups of water for 15-30 minutes.
● Swirl the rice in the water, then strain it into a clean container. You can ferment it overnight for added benefits.
● It can be stored in the fridge for up to a week. Apply it to your face with a cotton pad or use it as a face mist.

2. What is the Japanese secret to glowing skin?

One of the lesser-known secrets about Japanese skincare is that it's not all based on cosmetic products but rather the Japanese diet for clear skin that includes nutrient-dense foods such as:

● Fish
● Seaweed
● Green tea
● Rice bran
● Adzuki beans

This diet not only helps keep the skin glowing but also has anti ageing benefits.

3. How can I make my skin glow youthful?

To keep your skin glowing, youthful and healthy follow these steps:

● Hydrate your skin
● Sunscreen
● Consistent skincare routine
● A healthy diet
● Enough sleep
● Reduce stress

4. What is the 60-second Japanese skin ritual?

The 60-second Japanese skin ritual is also called "Hadaka no Tsukiai," which translates to "Bare Skin Connection." It's a quick and effective way to care for your skin. Here's how it goes:

● Cleansing your skin
● Applying toner
● Moisturising

Dr Nalla Rakesh
Consultant Dermatologist and Hair transplant Surgeon

Japanese Beauty Secrets for a Glowing Youthful Skin

Dr Nalla Rakesh
Consultant Dermatologist and Hair transplant Surgeon

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