Skin-Care Secrets From Around The World - a new series from Beauty Wonkette

Beauty Wonkette is a red, white, and blue AMERICAN GIRL.  But, with that said, Beauty Wonkette must admit that while we Americans may think we know our beauty, anyone who’s ever witnessed the detailed skin-care program of a gal from Korea knows there’s, um, always room for improvement. Read on to discover the many, many ways women around the globe are light-years ahead of us in the States when it comes to taking care of their skin — and then steal some of their secrets. Check back often as Beauty Wonkette globe trots, tossing out fab skin care secrets as we go....

First up:  

JAPAN:  YOUTH CULTURE

     Innovation and newness are biggies with the beauty-obsessed Japanese consumer, and Japanese women are up for pretty much anything to combat the signs of aging, says model, blogger, and Tokyo transplant Cynthia Popper. “Japan is obsessed with youth — maybe even more so than the States — and anti-aging products sell like mad here,” she says. Popper notes that even gimmicky offerings likedrinkable collagen (also known as “beauty drinks”) and collagen supplements are extremely popular, even though the concept of topical collagen is questionable at best.
     Exotic-sounding “cocoon shells," or actual silkworm cocoons, are one of the more popular methods in Japan for removing dead skin and unclogging pores. “The amino acids and proteins in the silk are similar to those in skin, which makes them a great natural exfoliator,” Popper says.    
     Compared to American women, who tend to take a more “restorative” approach to aging, Japanese women are more focused on preventing damage before it occurs. “The array of SPF 50 products, including sprays, lotions, wipes, creams, and even powders, is staggering,” says Popper. “Most women carry lightweight parasols with a special UV reflective lining any time they’re outside — it’s not uncommon to see women wearing long arm covers with T-shirts on even the hottest days.”
     Vicky Tsai, founder of skin-care brand Tatcha, agrees. “Anti-aging is a universal area of interest, and Japanese women are diligent about staying out of the sun from an early age, so wrinkles only become an issue much later in life,” she says. “Western women are primarily focused on wrinkles, but in Japan the emphasis is on achieving a poreless, creamy complexion.” 
     Tsai also says Japanese women take more of a ritualistic approach to skin care and spend more time each day caring for their complexion with daily exfoliation, masks, and sun protection. “This daily ritual helps fend off issues like acne, wrinkles, and hyperpigmentation before they arise,” says Tsai.

Next up:  China

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