If you scroll through the Instagram stories of any beauty aficionado on a trip to Japan, you'll probably become overwhelmed with envy at all the amazing Japanese drugstore beauty finds that they're stocking up on. We always want what we can't have (which is why I'm doomed to curl my stick-straight hair into beachy waves from now until eternity). A similar concept applies to these Japanese beauty products: Because they're hard to come by in the U.S., we want them even more.
We did the heavy lifting for you and scoured the Internet for the best Japanese drugstore beauty products you can buy stateside, from skincare to makeup. Stellar products—and adorable packaging—abound.
Ahead, we share the best Japanese beauty products that you can buy stateside.
Baby Foot Moisturizing Foot Mask
Unlike the brand's foot peel, this mask won't cause your feet to shed. Instead, it uses a blend of collagen, castor oil, and hyaluronic acid to deeply hydrate your feet. Apply these booties to clean feet, wait for 15 minutes, and massage in the leftover lotion once you remove them. Your feet will feel softer and more supple even after one use.
Curél Moisture Facial Milk
"Dry and sensitive skin is usually depleted of the natural lipids that encompass the skin’s protective barrier. These are the famous ceramides," says Lucy Chen, MD, of Riverchase Dermatology in Miami Beach, FL. "Facial milk cleansers are really great at cleaning the skin while leaving it soft. This particular one is soothing and improves your skin’s dryness and susceptibility to external pollutants. The brand is designed to replenish and protect your skin’s supply of ceramides."
Canmake Stay-On Balm Rouge
Canmake, a well-loved brand in Japan, wanted to make a product that could do it all. With their Stay-On Balm Rouge, you get a balm, lipstick, gloss, and lip SPF rolled into one adorably packaged product. We appreciate that the ingredient list is simple and that the product moisturizes without being sticky. Inclusions such as honey, jojoba oil, shea butter, and pomegranate oil are key players in this Japanese beauty staple.
Yueton Mascara Applicator Guide
"These mascara guards are great for blocking your mascara from ruining your eye makeup!" says makeup artist Juliette Perreaux. "A key step in executing a bold eye look is great lashes. The best way to make your lashes pop is to really get into the lash line." These plastic guards will help you get down to the root with your mascara wand, without smudging.
Dolly Wink Koji False Eyelashes #9 Natural Dolly
Dolly Wink is known for its amazing eye products, and their false lashes do not disappoint. This set includes two reusable pairs of lashes in a more natural style. Pair them with the brand's Koji Liquid Eyeliner ($25), to ensure that your lash band looks cohesive with your natural lash line.
Kiss Me Heroine Make Smooth Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner
One of the biggest beauty trends in Asia is winged eyeliner. While we often find ourselves with uneven wings, we still try to emulate their effortless flicks. Maybe the secret to their success is in the liner? Reviewers say that this waterproof option from Kiss Me Heroine is their holy grail.
Canmake Cream Cheek
Canmake can do no wrong. Their Cream Cheek product is a gel-like blush that is meant to blend seamlessly into your skin. The finish stays dewy and provides a lit-from-within glow to your skin. According to their site, the blush comes in a few different tones, but we are partial to this coral hue.
Canmake Perfect Multi Eyes Palette
A beautiful five-pan palette packed with brown neutrals that you might find yourself reaching for daily. The lighter colors come in larger pans, while the darker accent shades are a bit smaller, so you're less likely to run out of your all-over-the-lid staples first. It's so compact that you can easily toss it in your makeup bag or purse on the go. The only potential downside? A lack of matte shades.
Hada Labo Rohto Hadalabo Gokujun Hyaluronic Lotion Moist
Hada Labo was once a Japanese beauty secret but recently started gaining attention for its minimal ingredients and effective delivery. This formulation, in particular, has over 800 reviews on Amazon—and for a good reason. Hyaluronic acid draws in moisture to help soothe the most dehydrated skin without feeling greasy.
Etude House My Beauty Tool Jellyfish Silicon Brush
This adorable jellyfish-shaped exfoliating brush comes recommended by Chen, who notes that it's a great gift for someone younger who is just getting into skincare. It's "a three-in-one tool with bristled brushes that cleans out makeup, excess oil, and dirt, and contaminants without causing irritation to the skin" using bristles and a foaming sponge. The non-bristled side can be used as a face massager. Plus, "it is cost-effective and cute."
Hado Labo Tokyo Anti-Aging Hydrator
"Hada Labo makes a wonderful, lightweight moisturizer fit for any skin type," says Frieling. "Its key ingredient is hyaluronic acid and retinol, to not only bring back moisture to the skin but also promote fullness and improve circulation."
Kiss Me Heroine Make Long and Curl Mascara
Here at Byrdie HQ, we love a good mascara, especially one that promises to lengthen and curl our lashes. While this mascara won't make you look exactly like an anime character, it can get you pretty darn close. With its bristle brush, the Make Long and Curl Mascara provides a long-lasting curl while the ingredient of chamomile extract nourishes your lashes.
MAIKO Japanese Premium Oil Blotting Paper
Blotting papers. area must-have if you're oily. They help keep the shine at bay throughout the day and are especially great for those with an oily T-zone. These sheets from the brand Maiko are incredibly affordable, at $7 for a whopping 500 sheets.
Majolica Majorca Shadow Customize Eyeshadow
Gorgeous single eyeshadows in fun packaging from a brand under the Shiseido umbrella—and at a fun price, too! The color selection is both surprising and versatile. We're partial to this lovely metallic gold. Part-way between a powder and a cream, the formula contains petroleum jelly for a blendable, creamy finish.
Bifesta Mandom Eye Makeup Remover
With all of these long-lasting product recommendations, you are going to need an effective makeup remover. This one from Bifesta has a cult following and was recently reformulated to be water-based. Paired with the aforementioned Shirukotto Facial Cotton from Unicharm, you can ensure a great start to your nightly skincare routine.
Bioré Sarasara UV Aqua Rich Watery Essence Sunscreen
This sunscreen by Bioré boasts a whopping SPF 50, and it's also supremely hydrating (but lightweight) thanks to a blend of hyaluronic acid and royal jelly. Everyone in the beauty industry adores this sunscreen and at such a low price, it's no wonder they order it in bulk.
Royal jelly is a term used to describe creamy white secretions that come from the throat glands of honeybees. It hydrates, increases collagen production, promotes wound healing, and fights inflammation.
Rohto Ice Cooling Eye Drops
You might have spotted these eye drops from Rohto at your local Target or drugstore and never gave them a second glance. Well, now is the time to run and grab a bottle. With instant cooling and soothing properties, these drops will be your savior, especially during allergy season. Frieling calls Rohto "the most effective eyedrop brand that I've used to combat dry and tired eyes," though she cautions that you might experience minor stinging. "The results are truly magnificent." Perreaux is also a fan: "These eyedrops give you that just cleansed fresh face feeling but for your eyes. Not only will your eyes be instantly brighter and whiter, but you will also feel energized and more awake!"
DHC Deep Cleansing Oil
This cult-favorite cleaning oil is also dermatologist-approved. Gretchen Frieling, MD, a triple board-certified dermatopathologist in Boston loves the product because "it will not leave your skin with an oily residue; quite the opposite. It gives the skin a deep clean, removes makeup, and will not strip the skin of natural oils."
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