Can you guess the most underrated part of a good skincare routine? Not your cleanser, not micellar water, not sunscreen, and not even your essence toner. Hint: It’s not in your medicine cabinet. Drumroll, please… it’s water, of course! So much spotlight is showered on awesome beauty products these days that water tends to get overshadowed. A basic yet critical element to healthy skin, the Japanese seem to be clued in on this knowledge, and will even travel far and wide the country to immerse their bodies in purifying and beautifying onsen (hot spring) water! Let’s see what makes onsen water so exquisite.
Beauty benefits of onsen water
- Clearer skin
Japanese hot springs are said to contain up to stunning 19 different minerals! Among these, sulfur is said to help combat breakouts, and it is a common ingredient in dermatologist-recommended acne treatments. Soaking in the onsen water also has a detoxifying effect, much like sweating in a sauna, that helps flush out impurities from the pores. This opens the pores to absorb all the elemental goodness naturally occurring in the onsen water.
We’ve all heard of the dangers that free radicals pose to the skin, damaging the DNA and cell membranes through the oxidation process. Hot springs do the exact opposite. Onsen water contains antioxidative and oxidation-reducing components, that help reduce skin cell corrosion and keep the skin youthful.
The silica in onsen water is said to work wonders on dry and flaky skin, leaving it soft and rejuvenated. Not only that, but silica is said to restore health to brittle hair and nails as well. The steam from the onsen water also provides a hydrating mist and restores moisture to the entire body.
- Skin Healing
It’s hard to fully describe all the healing properties of onsen water, but studies have linked specific minerals to alleviating specific skin issues. For example, carbonate ion-filled onsen water has been shown to help curb inflammatory reactions and accelerate wound healing. Sulfur-containing onsen water has been said to soothe eczema, psoriasis, dermatitis, and other chronic skin conditions.
- The “It” factor
Onsen water just has a way of leaving your skin smooth, silky, and glowing. This is thanks to the sodium bicarbonate that attaches to your skin while bathing and builds up a protective membrane. Be careful not to wash it off, though! Let it stay on the skin for a few hours and watch the full result kick in.
What if I can’t get to an onsen?
It’s totally alright if you can’t make the time (or break the bank) to go all the way to Japan’s finest hot springs. You can reap the benefits of onsen water right at home, with the Megumi no Honpo Hot Spring Hyaluronic Acid Moisturizing Mask. A sheet mask dowsed in serum containing Okayama’s Yuhara Hot Spring water, ceramides, and collagen, this anti-aging mask helps to improve elasticity, firmness, and hydration. It’s also said to help reduce the appearance of pores, reduce excess oil and sebum, and strengthen and repair the skin barrier. Nourishing without weighing the skin down, it’s most suitable for oily, combo, and normal skin types.
The Megumi no Honpo Hot Spring Hyaluronic Acid Moisturizing Mask is a sheet mask with serum made from Okayama Prefecture’s Yuhara Hot Spring water, ceramides, and collagen to hydrate the skin and increase elasticity and firmness. This anti-aging mask works to minimize the appearance of pores, reduce excess oil and sebum, and to strengthen & repair the skin barrier.