Long recognised in Japan as being an important part of a skincare regime, the concept of double moisturising is being exported to women in Europe and the United States.

Kanebo Cosmetics on December 27 announced the release of a new luxury product that is a first-step moisturiser formulated with a technology that is said to enhance the effects of anti-ageing skincare products that are added on top.

This is a departure from the beauty regimes of women in the West, said Dinah Imanari, a spokeswoman for the Tokyo-based company.

“Lotions in the West are understood to be a part of the cleansing regime and people rely on oil-based creams,” she said. “Kanebo says it is vital that you start with a water-based product that fills the skin with moisture and enables it to then accept the next product.”

Many of Japan’s other major skincare companies — including Shiseido, Kose and Kao — have double moisturising products and it is perhaps surprising that companies in Europe and the US have not caught on, particularly given that the environments in these markets are generally drier and therefore harsher on the skin, said Imanari.

Kanebo is releasing its Sensai Prime Solution on February 1 in Europe and the US. The first-step moisturiser is a flagship product that is being added to the Sensai super-prestige brand and will sell for €120 for a 75-ml bottle.

Moisturising lotions are by far the most important skincare item in Japan, with consumers here purchasing 124 million containers every year. Lotions also account for the largest portion of the Japanese skincare market, with 26 percent of the total on a value basis.

The concept of a moisturising lotion is relatively new in the West, however, where a lotion generally means cleansing products such as tonics or astringents, and consumers tend to rely on oil-based emulsions or creams for moisturising.

Sensai Prime Solution is formulated with Koshimaru Silk EX, a new moisturising complex that the company says ensures a steady supply of moisture from within the skin by enhancing the synthesis of hyaluronic acid in all skin layers. Combined with hawthorn extract, it is said to boost cellular receptivity to signals from neighboring cells.

This technology is the result of 20 years of reseach on communication between cells at Kanebo and means, according to Kanebo, that cells can reproduce and metabolize collagen and hyaluronic acid more effectively by responding to signals in the skin with greater speed.

“When you try to imagine cell communication, remember that cells only work in teams,” Hiroyuki Yoshida, chief researcher for the Sensai line, said. “Without teamwork, an organism can never function.”

The company claims that with regular application, skin becomes firmer, wrinkles become less visible and the skin feels smooth and well moisturised. –AFP RELAXNEWS