From London to Tokyo: How the Rest of the World Does Anti-Aging
Ever since we took a deep look into how Korean women view skincare as part of their culture—which goes as far as having a family facialists the way Americans have family doctors—we can't help but wonder if women elsewhere around the globe take anti-aging just as seriously.
In Colombia, there are zero qualms attached to plastic surgery in the name of vanity. In fact, according to the International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, a procedure is performed every five minutes, with liposuction and breast implants as the popular choices. The opposite can be said about women in Europe, where minimalism is the preferred approach to anti-aging.
We spoke with a handful of skincare experts in the industry from around the world to see how the rest of the globe does anti-aging. While everyone's philosophy varies, the commonality each county shares is that beauty plays a role in everyone's life. Keep scrolling to read what international skincare experts had to say about how women from Korea to India do anti-aging.
"I'm a fan of the European approach to aging, which is much more about prevention and thinking long-term rather than going for quick fixes. In the UK, women use targeted skincare and treat themselves to facials in which oils and serums are key, along with facial massage techniques to plump and increase circulation to skin.
"In Europe, you often see classy, incredibly beautiful women who have had nothing invasive done in their 50s, 60s, and above. Lasers and Botox are considered more invasive, and it's not as common as it is in the U.S. to have invasive procedures, although it is happening more and more. Aging naturally is considered the norm, and there is not such a focus on age and youth.
"An emphasis is placed on taking time for your daily skincare ritual—it is about maintenance and investing in your skin and your skincare regimen as a long-term strategy. Cleansing and treating your skin at the end of the day should take as long as putting on your makeup in the morning! Double cleansing with a nourishing cleansing oil or balm is very common (like my Glow Mud Cleanser and Cleansing Balm!).
"In Europe, common practice is to use a combination of high-performance products that work synergistically to improve the skin's appearance and texture. Using makeup with skin benefits is very popular to protect and preserve complexion. Additionally, it is important to use light textures and colors to create a youthful glow as opposed to heavy/matte formulations and dark colours which can be aging for the 30+.
"Some favorite ingredients in skincare to create a youthful effect are (and what we base our Pixi Skintreats assortment around are acids (glycolic/salicylic/malic) as well as vitamins A, C, and E. Plant waxes and oils: rosehip/rose geranium, damascus rose, jojoba and sweet almond oil, peptides/plant collagens and humectants (a cocktail of humectants that plump skin and prevent dehydration)."
— Petra Strand, Pixi Beauty
"In Colombia, beauty is not considered a luxury but rather a necessity, like brushing your teeth. One of the best, and sometimes the worst, things about Colombian women is that we embrace everything and are willing to try everything and do the maximum we can for our beauty. We tend to love the self-care rituals and layering many products and are really dedicated to making the time to take care of our skin, whether it's masking, facials, serums, ampoules, or anything else.
"The bad part can be that, because we are so open, we experiment with everything that is new, even if it's untested, and trying out new lasers and treatments like that can sometimes end up causing disasters. Plastic surgery and injections are very normal and accepted in Colombia, even as a preventative, which to me can seem unnecessary when you are really caring for the skin the way we tend to.
"One thing that doesn't get a lot of attention is the way that nutrition can impact your skin. Makeup was really huge when I was growing up, but the younger generations are more into a natural look, so perhaps nutrition will start to play a bigger role as naturally healthy looking skin becomes more and more of a trend."
— Tata Harper
"Korean women are taught at a very young age to moisturize, hydrate, exfoliate, avoid direct sunlight, use SPF, and cleanse the skin thoroughly to prevent premature aging. It's considered part of their normal, daily hygienic routine, much like brushing our teeth every morning and night is. Due to their skin-first philosophy, they know that the earlier they invest into their skin, they will have more youthful looking skin in the long term.
"I've always thought this was interesting, but Koreans will regularly visit dermatologists to simply check up on the condition of their skin, not because they have a specific skin issue they're looking to control, such as acne. They care about the general health of their skin and believe in regular checkups, which is similar to how Americans may do an annual health exam with their family doctor.
"Aside from topical skincare products, Botox, fillers and laser treatments are also popular in Korea, and many times they are used as preventative measures rather than to smooth out existing wrinkles or lift sagging skin. Dermatologists in Korea are known to give treatments like Botox in small dosages, rather than all at once like they do in the states, to make the result more natural and to have more control of the final look."
— Charlotte Cho, Soko Glam
"For many beautiful Indian women, it's household ingredients to the rescue when it comes to anti-aging. Some of the most powerful solutions for skincare—especially for skin ailments—come right from the backyard. Honey masks made for surefire remedies for everything from relieving acne to achieving that pre-wedding glow. Green tea and honey masks are a powerful and instant antioxidant pick-me-ups for your skin. Indians have had a love affair with turmeric well before it made headlines. This ingredient has been a choice healing herb for centuries in Ayurveda. With a plethora of amazing benefits, it can be used to soften skin, reduce wrinkles and treat acne and oily skin.
"At the other end of household ingredients sit some über-precious rare ingredients: frankincense, rose, and sandalwood. They are also favorites of beauty aficionados today and are more common in many skincare products today. Dark spots and rough skin are rapidly repaired when your skin's natural cellular turnover is restored and boosted. Frankincense helps do this powerfully, without drying the skin or making it sensitive. Rose oil is thought of as a 100% natural alternative to hyaluronic acid and used to plump skin with rich moisture, without the downsides of a synthetic additive. Sandalwood slows down the aging of the skin. It calms and supports the skin, creating that clean, flawless, luminous complexion that we all hanker after."
— Shrankhla Holecek, Uma Oils
Hada Labo Tokyo Ultimate Anti-Aging Facial Mask ($15)
"For women in Tokyo, the aspect of brightening the skin is part of the anti-aging skincare routine. Women in Tokyo analyze their skin to ensure that it appears radiant with no unwanted dark spots. What causes dark spots is the melanin in the skin. In order to create a brightening complexion, Japanese women try to understand where the melanin is located on their face. A state-of-the-art analyzer scans the face and creates a 3D chart showing where the melanin is located, and can be removed by a laser to the targeted areas. This leaves the skin looking bright and glowing.
"Currently, carbon dioxide gas is the skincare trend in Tokyo. The gas penetrates the skin and enhances the blood circulation while delivering nutrition to our cells. This renews the skin for a more youthful and radiant appearance. One product that contains carbon dioxide gas is Sofina iP, which is a new product that just recently launched in Japan. Through carbon dioxide gas, it stimulates skin rejuvenation, reduces pigmentation, and scarring."
— Hada Labo, Hada Labo Tokyo
Do you know other anti-aging philosophies of different nations? Share them with us in the comments!