J Beauty vs K Beauty

These two terms are not new to beauty and skin care connoisseurs. There has been a massive surge in the reach and popularity of Asian beauty products & principles across the world, in the last few years. Japanese Beauty (J Beauty) and Korean Beauty (K Beauty) are leading the way.


While K-beauty and J-beauty have different approaches to skin care, they share the same goal and attitude when it comes to skin health. BOTH focus on:

1. hydration

2. cleansing

3. reduction or prevention of pigmentation (brown spots, melasma) & sun protection



Japanese skin care is more conservative, functional, efficient and simplified. While considered innovative and science-driven, J-beauty is about minimalist routines for consistent long-term results, using fewer but proven and very high quality products. It emphasises on double cleansing and hydration but likes a few very light layers.

On the other hand, Korean routines have a lot of room for layering & experimentation to optimize dewy, glowy, fresh-looking skin with many layers of hydrating products. 

Korean beauty is perhaps best-known for its 10-step regimen—which, when taken to the extreme, can actually be as many as 15 which typically involve a range of products that are uniquely Korean and some may use unexpected or bizarre ingredients.

  • Essence: A “hybrid between liquid serum and toner” usually infused with fermented ingredients and are applied right after cleansing and toning. It hydrates and preps your skin to allow for better absorption of oncoming products while also targeting your skin concerns.
  • Ampoules: Containing a higher concentration of actives, an ampoule is often considered the supercharged version of a serum.
  • Problem-specific sheet masks

On the other hand, the Japanese women put more emphasis on simplifying their beauty regimen with products that deliver more than one intended benefit. A typical Japanese skin care routine involves:

  • Lotion: Watery hydrating products that are patted into the skin 
  • Oils: Oils function both as cleansers and moisturizers.
  • SPF is essential