Some of us never knew the importance of skincare until we were in our late twenties. As to some of our parents and other relatives, our role models for the longest time, skincare was synonymous to hygiene, which was not necessarily a bad thing. Good for us, though, with the much-gaining access to media and other information sources (and of course, the awesome people who review products and interview experts for us, laymen), our realization that the stakes are much higher came, and there is no turning back.
Lucky for some people, skincare was engrained in how they were raised. Unlike how it is today, like the older generation sharing their holy grail products, some families pass on their beauty and skincare techniques. This is particularly correct for the Japanese. Their flawless, ageless skin is brought by ancient skincare secrets that were passed on from generation to generation. Japanese teens may have had the opportunity to hear and apply these secrets to their skincare routines long even before we knew what foundation was, but it does not mean that we can’t apply these now.
The important thing to remember, to the Japanese, skincare should work from the inside. This would likely be the reason why Japanese products were formulated to work on the cellular level. Like the luxury brand, SK-II (which is the reason for Cate Blanchett’s amazing skin) patronizes its own the ingredient Pitera, which “is a clear liquid rich in vitamins, amino acids, minerals, and organic acids, which enhances the skin’s rejuvenation process”. Japanese skincare believes that for something to be beautiful outside, it should be taken care inside.
Here are two very important hacks you should always remember:
1. Your Body Is Your Temple: Watch What You Eat
Anything applied topically would be no match if there is a damage inside. Think about it this way: for all your puberty, you have been told to cure your acne with a cream that you apply every night when apparently, you have been ingesting too much dairy for your own good, which can cause acne, and might have caused yours. You have invested a lot of money and time using a certain product when your problem has been always in what you eat.
Diet is an important part of Japanese skincare. Have you noticed that most Japanese foods are fermented and organic? Cuisines usually consist of fish and vegetables. They are very particular in their diet, as they know it could affect their well-being and appearance in general. This is the heart of Japanese skincare, which we should always remember. What we eat plays a very significant role in how our health shows in the outside.
2. You Should Always Stay Hydrated
Hydration is a VERY important part of skincare. Water helps in our digestion and absorption. Without ample hydration, our organs would not operate well. It also helps driving out toxicity from inside to the outside. Noticed how those who drink the most water is seen to have more supple and moisturized skin? It is because that water is needed to maintain elasticity. Water is the cheapest skincare product you could ever get. In fact, water is an essential and effective part of Asian beauty routines. For the Japanese, water is even a part for their fitness regimes. That is how much it is important.
With all the advertising everywhere we go–from where we access our news to the films we watch–, we get swamped by various products that influencers make us want to try, that sometimes we look beyond the easy, simple, and ubiquitous ones that the Japanese have been doing for centuries, and as evident as before, it has not lost its effectiveness.
Want more international skincare advice? Check out our high-performance masks to try while you Netflix and Chill.