As a proud Asian woman, I often have folks coming up to me and complimenting my skin. While I’m super self-critical and can see SO MANY areas that I need to improve, I appreciate the kind words, and I won’t lie, it’s always a nice confidence boost.
Interestingly enough, there’s actually a lot of truth behind why people view Asians as having great skin. Also, the number of people who are trying to emulate the “Asian look” is exploding quite rapidly, so there must be something to it, right?
In reality, Asian skin looks so good due to the attitude Asian people have towards skincare. They take their skin health very seriously, and they meticulously plan their daily routines to get the best results possible. Luckily for you, we’ve got the scoop right here!
So, why do Asians have good skin? Let’s dive in.
What defines Asian skin?
Asia is a big place with a hugely diverse range of people. However, there are some general commonalities that appear in their skin.
It’s important to say that not every aspect of Asian skin is what we’d usually define as “good”, but the genetic makeup of the people and how they handle certain skin issues all combine together to create an aspirational outcome.
Here are some of the main traits that define Asian skin.
On average, Asian skin ages at a slower rate than other groups. That means Asian skin displays fewer visual signs of aging, such as lines, wrinkles, bagginess, and blemishes than everyone else. There are exceptions to this, of course, but as a whole, this proves to be true.
The reason why this is the case is rather interesting. Asian skin has a thicker dermis, which is a layer of the skin that contains elastin and collagen. Collagen is perhaps the most important bodily protein for skin health, as it helps bind different layers together, smooths lines and wrinkles, makes the skin look more youthful, and promotes healthy skin cell turnover. The less collagen people have, the older their skin tends to look. Asian people are pretty blessed in this area!
Higher oil production
Again, this doesn’t apply to every Asian person, but on average, Asians tend to have oilier skin. The reasons for this can vary, but the most obvious one is probably due to the climate of many Asian countries. Not only do they tend to be warmer, but they have a lot of humidity too, which means there’s no shortage of moisture in the air.
Because of this, Asians have had to cater their skincare routines to manage their oil production more closely than perhaps other people. Using products such as serums and exfoliators, Asians can keep their sebum production under control, creating a healthy environment for their pores and always removing dirt, pollutants, and dead cells from the surface of the skin. Doing this regularly will help the skin to look cleaner, more balanced, and radiant.
Keeping with the environmental theme for a moment, because of the generally warmer and sunnier weather in Asia, Asian people are much more likely to take sun protection much more seriously than those in the western world. It’s not uncommon or unusual for Asians to use sunscreen or an SPF product on a daily basis, even if the weather isn’t particularly summery. This is because Asian people understand that the sun’s UV rays, even on overcast days, can impact the skin quite severely.
When the skin is always protected with sunscreen and SPF, the sun has a lower chance of damaging the skin and causing burning, stinging, hyperpigmentation, and other forms of irritation.
The best Asian skincare routine
If there’s one thing that contributes to the attractiveness and health of Asian skin, it is Asian people’s attitude to their skincare routines.
The skincare industry is huge, and I mean HUGE in Asia. Everyone is searching for the next beauty trend, and have you seen those K-Pop stars? Good grief they look like angels! The point is, having great-looking skin is seen as aspirational and inspirational, and the cosmetics industry has certainly made a huge impact.
Here’s our 10-point plan for the best Asian skincare routine.
1. Oil cleanser
To start off the daily routine, an oil-based facial cleanser is very commonly used. Oil cleansers are fantastic at breaking down sunscreen, makeup, and general dirt that has accumulated on the surface of the skin.
To get the best results, mix the oil-based cleanser with lukewarm water, and rub it in a circular motion on your face for about 2-3 minutes. This rubbing technique can help to stimulate blood flow, which improves skin cell turnover. Gently rinse to finish.
2. Double cleanse!
Once the oil cleanser has been washed away, it’s time to cleanse again! That’s right, we’re taking this super seriously.
This time, use a water/foam-based cleanser instead. Cleansing a second time will simply clear up the dirt and debris that managed to escape the first time, but will do so in a gentle and soothing way. Again, use circular rubbing motions for a few minutes to get the best outcome and further stimulate blood circulation.
Now it’s time to use a good face scrub to exfoliate your skin and clear those pores. Exfoliators use powerful active ingredients alongside hard granules to scrape away excess dirt and dead cells from the surface of the skin. This will clear pores and ensure they aren’t at risk of clogging and blockages.
Exfoliators are also excellent at stimulating the production of collagen, which will help improve the physical appearance of the skin, reduce the signs of aging, and restore that vital elasticity in the skin. This is an incredible way of keeping the skin looking youthful and glowing.
4. Use a toner
Toners are yet another tool to ensure the skin is clear of dirt and gunk. We’d recommend using an alcohol-free toner, as alcohol can actually dry out the skin, which might be detrimental to some people.
Also, a lot of modern toners in Asia contain nourishing antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties, which will help the skin retain a beautiful balance.
5. Apply Essence
Perhaps the underrated gem in any Asian skincare routine is the use of essence. A well-produced essence product can not only hydrate the skin thanks to its effective ingredients, but it can also help to increase skin cell turnover, soothe irritation, and heal damaged areas of the skin. We’re not saying it’s a miracle tool, but it’s pretty damn good.
6. Face serum
Now that your skin is super clean and free of obstacles, we can move on to the big hitters in the routine. Using a face serum containing potent ingredients such as retinol is an unmissable step in any Asian skincare routine.
Retinol is incredible at tackling the visual signs of aging by smoothing lines and wrinkles. It can also help stimulate collagen production, which we all know by now is really important for skin health. Additionally, dark spots and pigmentation issues can be effectively treated over a period of time by using retinol correctly. There are so many benefits it would be madness not to use it.
7. Enjoy a sheet mask
If you’re not feeling like you’re in a professional spa by now, you’re about to. Sheet masks are an immensely popular skincare treatment in all parts of Asia. Taking the time, usually 20-30 minutes a day, to lie back, relax, and feel the calming and soothing effects of a refreshing facial sheet mask is one of life’s great pleasures.
The mask contains a selection of essential nutrients and vitamins, that over time will be absorbed into the face and get to work. Keeping this habit up as part of your lifestyle will yield amazing results for your skin.
8. Use eye-cream
In an Asian skincare routine, the eyes get special attention. It’s crucial to care for the skin around the eyes as it is usually some of the thinnest and most sensitive on the entire body. Under-eye skin for example is usually the first place where we notice signs of aging like lines and wrinkles, and it can also be prone to puffiness and bagginess.
A lovely, rich eye cream, or a thinner serum or gel if you prefer, can do wonders for the under-eye skin. Simply tap a few spots in the desired area and allow the skin to absorb it. Over time, the under-eye skin will gain a lot of hydration, and show fewer lines and wrinkles.
You can’t have a great skincare routine without moisturizer. Moisturiser will add a nice cherry to the skincare routine cake when applied at this late stage. It will help to lock all the previous products and their benefits in place while giving the skin a nice boost in hydration.
Depending on your skin type, there are different moisturizers that are better for the job. For example, if you have more oily skin, you should opt for a thinner moisturizer like a gel or light lotion. If you have dry skin, a richer cream will be perfect.
Last but certainly not least, it’s incredibly important to protect the skin from the sun. SPF can fortify the skin against powerful UV rays, which could cause a lot of damage to the skin.
Asians understand the sheer seriousness of effectively protecting the skin from the sun, and they never finish their skincare routine without this step.
Sun protection is the key to vibrant, healthy, and beautiful skin, and you can never be too careful.
Asian people tend to have such great-looking skin because they take their skincare routines more seriously. Sure, genetics can play a part, but in general, Asian people take a lot of pride in their appearance and understand that the skin is a vital human organ that needs to be looked after just as much as everything else.
If you want to achieve similarly gorgeous and healthy skin, you can get into the Asian mindset and expand your skincare routine to hit every possible note. Your skin will certainly thank you.