My friend Maggie is Japanese Australian and had the most insane complexion and thick locks. I am not afraid to admit it – I am a little jealous of her, and have a tendency to get a little girl-crush on her when I spend a lot of time with her. She has some epic genes, but most importantly – she KNOWS good beauty…. Cause she stocks up on her favourites whenever she visits Asia.
So, in order for us all to get the best out of our beauty routine, I thought I would take a leaf out of Maggie’s (beauty) book and share with you my all-time favourite Asian-inspired beauty products that are easily accessible in the UK (and some in Australia)… so we can all be on our way to glorious skin and hair, no matter our genetics!
Original Mineral Project Sukuroi Gold Smoothing Balm*
If you are a regular reader, you would have seen me rave about this amazing golden pot of glory. It truly is one of those hair products that wins… every time! Not only does it smell like heaven but the theory behind it is pretty darn impressive, too.
Inspired by Kintsukurio: a Japanese word describing the art of repairing broken pottery with gold or silver lacquer: the smoothing balm is designed to repair and smooth the hair with star-gold balm. And it really does. After 2 uses, my locks started to break less, felt thicker and smoother, and constantly complimented for smelling so fresh.
Masque Bar Green Tea Sheet Mask*
Every man and his dog has heralded the goodness of Green Tea, and it is no wonder – it truly is a hero food! Green Tea is an Asian superfood that has been known to help boost the metabolism, boost brain function and may lower your risk of certain cancers… basic-bitch status right there! It is little wonder companies are now introducing it as an ingredient in their skincare – if it is good for the inside it must be good for the outside.
Sheet masks originated in Korea and are a MASSIVE beauty trend, that doesn’t plan on dying down anytime soon. So when you mix these two super hubs of beauty and inner health, you’re basically giving your skin the BEST chance at being awesome… And this is exactly what Masque Bar did.
The Masque Bar Green Tea Sheet Mask helps to minimise dark spots (one of the many side effect of being Australian) and helps reduce pigmentation irregularities (again, basically an Australian right of passage). I also found that it helps even my complexion and boost radiance – never a bad thing! I whip one of these babies out once a week (usually on a Sunday), sit and relax, and within 20-30 minutes, my complexion is glowing and ready to start a new week.
I have raved about Masque Bar masks before, but I think these ones have taken the cake – definitely my favourite.
I have a new baby! He was born a little while back, is the size of my fist and is the light of my skin’s life. His name is Yoso, is Japanese and all kinds of epic. No, no.. Not an actual heart-beating, blood-pumping human baby (seriously people: what do you take me for?!)… I mean a hand-held device baby. A baby that lives in my bathroom. It is my YOSO Pro baby to be more precise!
To explain better… The Yoso Pro is a nifty, 3 Step Deep Cleasnsing hand-held device that uses Ion technology to give you fresher, more radiant skin – more than you have ever had before. It is simple to use (just read the instructions and you will be sorted within minutes), really amps up your skincare routine and can help even be used to boost your sheet masks results.
By simply holding the device and touching it to your face, the Ion technology is activated. This technology works in unison with your body’s natural Ions to thoroughly cleanse and even out skin tone. The gentle vibrations create an invigorating cleanse, or can also be used (on another setting) to vibrate and boost your serums further into your skin, leaving it plump and on its way to perfection (well, so I reckon). I have also used it to ramp up my Masque Bar Green Tea Sheet Mask facial and REALLY saw a difference (hello radiance)!
TIP – for extra exfoliation, use the ring and instead of wrapping a facial pad over it, wrap a medical gauze around it and use with your cleanser. I do this twice a week and notice how much smoother my skin is, and how much more even my complexion looks (even after make up application).
Kiwabi Tokyo Root Vanish by Kazumi*
There are months where I would much rather spend my pennies on going out, a new dress or a fun adventure outside of London.. Instead of touching up my roots. Being a blonde is great and all, but the maintenance can be an issue. Like a serious issue – I have considered breaking up with Blonde, and returning to my original colour… Mousey Brown (I can hear all the gasps now). Yes, Mousey Brown is my natural colour, and it ain’t pretty. So, instead of ending my 2 year relationship with the colour that I love, I decided it was time to part ways with my monthly touch ups, embrace the ombre effect and leverage root touchups with the Kiwabi Root Vanish by Kazumi, pen!
Yes, it exists people – a pen that vanishes your roots in seconds! Kazumi (celebrity colourist) has bought out a magical (and super sleek, might I add) root vanish product that allows you to cover greys and touch up your dreaded roots without having to venture to your local salon. It is nicknamed a ‘grey hair manicure’ as you simply brush onto damp hair where required then blow-dry to set the pigment. It is an ingenious way to help extend the time between salon appointments.
Kiwabi Root Vanish by Kazumi is a unique gel-based formula that contains 22 youth regenerating botanicals to hydrate and heal. It was born out of KIWABI’s laboratory in Japan, leveraging the expertise of dermatologists and haircare experts, who carefully selected the best and newest ingredient technologies to seamlessly blend mountain herbs, Asian fruit extracts, tropical flower essences and ocean minerals. The results? A hydrating, hair smoothing, anti-aging concoction that has no sticky resiude or risk of colour transference. AND… It is sweat/humidity resistant, contains no Parabens or SLS’s (the nasties you definitely don’t want) and is cruelty and fragrance free.
Kiwabi Root Vanish by Kazumi Morton is available in 5 different colours and can be purchased from Boots in the UK.
Clipper Organic White Tea*
Now I know I have covered all the topical products for your locks and skin, but did you know: beauty starts from within?! White Tea is a star ingredient in a lot of skincare products, but consuming it is even better for you – this is why I have become obsessed (seriously, I drink 3 cups a day) with Clipper Organic White Tea!
White Tea originated in the Fujian Province in China. It is made from the buds and young leaves of the tea bush and is rich in antioxidants. It has many beauty and health related benefits, including: helping to reduce blood pressure and cholesterol, increasing bone density, can help to kill bacteria and viruses thanks to a large amount of antioxidants, helps to promote tooth and gum health (due to small amounts of fluoride) and reducing free radicals thus promoting healthy skin. All-in-all, a pretty epic product if you ask me!
It has a slightly bitter, but delicate taste, is refreshing and calming, and tastes good hot or cold. What stands out for me with Clipper Tea is the fact that not only are the teas DELICIOUS, but their ethics are too! Clipper Tea considers everything from the sourcing of the ingredients, where the tea comes from, the way they pack and blend the tea; all whilst upholding their policy of ‘no artificial ingredients’. They are fair-trade, inexpensive, unbleached and just darn right epic!
So, what are you waiting for: pick yours up today at the Clipper Tea website.
Do you use products inspired by Korea? Japan? China? Care to share?