It's no secret that we're big fans of J-beauty here at Byrdie HQ. With amazing brands like Koh Gen Do, Shiseido, and SK-II available to us, how could we not be? Plus, we love the ideology behind Japanese beauty and skincare. It's all about "fewer steps and greater intention," according to Shiseido's Frances Grant. That's something that we can definitely get behind, and we wanted to learn more. To do so, we talked to Rola, a Japanese model, to get the inside scoop on her everyday skincare routine.
Rola is an icon. That's evident from her five million followers on Instagram. In addition to having a successful modeling career, she's also a TV host, actress, and even an author, so it's no wonder she's gained such a following. The 28-year-old also happens to have incredible skin. Fortunately for us, she didn't hold back on revealing her tips for achieving a stunning complexion. Read on to learn just how she does it.
When it comes to skincare, Rola's mantra is "whatever your routine is, don't skip it!" she says. "Even if it's inconvenient, I always try to do my morning and nighttime routines. Consistency the most important aspect," she continues. Rola follows the traditional Japanese skincare steps: cleanse, apply a lotion, apply a facial essence or toner, and hydrate. "Sometimes there are more steps," she adds. "Sometimes I use a cleansing oil before my face wash and a thicker night cream after the moisturizing lotion, depending on the time of day and the general feel of my skin.
You have to listen to your body. If your skin feels dry, you add the extra moisturizing step, especially at night!"
Rola has been using this line from Japanese brand Pola for years now. "I just love the texture and smell of this line in particular. And it's definitely effective," she raves. "I let my American manager use them a few times, and now she's been buying them ever since if that tells you anything!" This particular set includes the whole line: a cleansing cream, wash, lotion, serum, milk, cream, and a massage cream.
Aside from her holy-grail Pola products, Rola is also a fan of the luxury skincare brand Aēsop and this face oil in particular. "I love the natural scents they use and the high-quality texture. It feels luxurious, but it's all natural. I love it!" she raves.
Face masks are also a staple in Rola's skincare routine. She uses them at least once a week, especially before getting her makeup done but also before getting on an airplane. "And sometimes even when I'm on an airplane," she laughs. Our editorial director, Faith Xue, swears by this mask from Glow Recipe for in-flight skincare. "This watermelon-based, amino acid– and hyaluronic acid–filled mask helped keep my skin hydrated and balanced so when I stepped off the plane, I was glowing. It's now one of my travel essentials," she gushes.
Part of Rola's skincare routine involves being conscious of the food she consumes. "I eat vegan whenever I can. I've been doing that for a little over a year now, and I've really noticed the difference in my skin quality," she explains. "I also take a women's multivitamin and MCT oil supplements," Rola continues.
Another tip? When she's not working, Rola makes an effort to go suppin-kao, which means bare-faced. "I don't wear makeup that much when I'm not working. If I'm not going out at night or working, I'm almost always suppin-kao!" she reveals. With such glowing skin, we don't blame her.
Shop Our Favorite J-Beauty Products
Our assistant editor, Erin Jahns, is a fan of this yellow-tinted primer which diffuses dark spots and discoloration.
"It simply has everything you'd want in a cleansing oil: It removes makeup and grime from the skin super effectively, and moisturizing ingredients like vitamin E and olive oil leave my face super soft after use but never greasy," features editor Amanda Montell raves.
Kaitlyn McLintock, our news writer, can't say enough good things about this silky, hyaluronic acid–infused cleanser.
Multiple members of Team Byrdie sing the praises of this essence and its ability to brighten, soften, and improve skin elasticity.
Another tried-and-true Team Byrdie fave, this sunscreen provides broad-spectrum protection without leaving the skin feeling clogged, greasy, or chalky.