What's in a name? The term lotion is confusing to a lot of us in the Western world. Why are they called lotions and not toners? We mentioned in our previous blog that there are no comparable products like Japanese lotions. In the West we call it "Japanese toner" but it's different than regular toners that we can find in our drug stores.
Japanese lotions are watery moisturizers that you use after your cleansing routine to hydrate your skin.
Western toners are more astringent and often used as a second step after cleansing to wipe away any residue and excess oil after using the cleanser. Also, Western toners can be drying because they contain alcohol. The difference with Japanese toners is not only in how and when to use the toners but also in the ingredients. Japanese lotions (toners) are to balance your skin pH level after washing your face and to hydrate and soften the skin. When you think about hydrations and/or moisturizers, you usually don't think about lotions.
Double Moisturizing to achieve soft and plump skin.
Since most of us are familiar with the double cleansing method, let's talk about double moisturizing! You start your PM routine with double cleansing, the first step is to remove make-up, sunscreen and dirt on the surface of your skin. The second step is to clean deeper into the pores to prevent breakouts. Since they use the double cleansing method in Japan, astringents are not needed. Also, it's not something you want to use since it's drying out your skin, what we want is a supple mochi skin!
Japanese lotion focus on hydrating the skin and prepping the skin for better absorption of serums and moisturizers. It's the first step of your double moisturizing method, followed by an emulsion and/or a cream. There are a lot of different kind of lotions, each has their additional benefits next to the extra hydration boost. Like brighten up the skin, anti-aging care and pore care. So, don't underestimate the power of lotions. This step is necessary, because dehydrated skin will cause wrinkles, sensitiveness, itchiness and dullness.
Double moisturizing method that can be used in morning and evening routine.
There are different ways on how to apply the lotions. Either you pour a moderate amount on your palms, warm it up and gently pat into your skin till all is absorbed or use a cotton pad and gently press and hold against your skin.
How to use Japanese lotion?
Besides using Japanese lotion in your moisturizing routine, you can also apply it in other ways. If you feel like pampering yourself at home but you don't have any (sheet)masks, try lotion masks! This technique is used by many Japanese women. This is how they do it: soak a couple of cotton pads into the lotions and place it on your skin for 5 - 10 minutes till it is all absorbed.
Another great technique is to use the lotions as a facial mist, especially during summer heat. Mix your favourite J-beauty lotion with distilled water in a mist spray bottle and chill it in the fridge. (Mixing with water is optional, if your favourite lotion is watery enough, you don’t have to.) Nothing like a cool refreshment on hot days.
During colder months when our skin can get dryer than normal, you can use lotions as a double body lotion too. Just apply the lotion before applying the body lotions.
Hope this post clarifies about Japanese lotions and be helpful if you want to bring J-beauty products into your routine.