Japanese Skincare Secrets
Written by Jessica Smith   
Tuesday, 15 September 2009
Japanese woman have an image of youthful and vibrant looking skin even in old age. But it isn't all lucky genes - the culture has always valued beautiful skin and Japanese skincare is an important part of life.

There's no reason we can't all benefit from the secrets they've learned and enjoy the same youthful and healthy skin well into old age.

Japanese skincare isn't just a lotion or an exfoliation technique. It's a holistic approach that includes daily skin care and diet choices. Plenty of raw vegetables and fruit mean a good supply of antioxidants to slow down the aging process caused by free radicals.

Moisturizing regularly with natural oils - not manufactured products not only maintains a proper moisture balance but also brings the nutrients skin needs. Exfoliation is also a life long habit most Japanese women learn at a young age.

All these things are about habit and life style. But in addition to this, the Japanese identified a natural ingredient hundreds of years ago that they understand actually slows down the aging process in skin. It's a central part of many Japanese skin care regimes.

Phytessence Wakame is an extract taken from a sea kelp found in the Japanese sea. It's a brown algae that has been used for hundreds of years as the key ingredient in natural facial creams.

Science has now provided us with the scientific answer to this "miracle ingredient". Phytessence Wakame actually inhibits an enzyme in skin that becomes active with age causes some of the aging process. Hyaluronidase (this enzyme) breaks down the hyaluronic acid in our skin. The problem with that is that this acid is a key ingredient that provides strength and stability to the two proteins in skin that give it strength, flexibility and firmness. Without sufficient quantities of hyaluronic acid, collagen and elastin don't have any strength or form and skin starts to sag.

By inhibiting this enzyme, the hyaluronic acid content of your skin is replenished and the sagging is considerably slowed.

But that isn't all - wakame is also rich in the vitamin B group, calcium and potassium (all essential minerals ) and provides some protection to UV damage. No wonder it is such an elemental ingredient in Japanese skincare.

There are now some natural products that contain this Japanese secret as well as some of the natural moisturizers the Japanese are fond of. I've written about how wakame is used at and about the products I personally use after discovering some of these secrets.