A Guide To Taiwanese Skincare

A Guide To Taiwanese Skincare
Having started our own skincare brand here in Taiwan, we’re a big believer in homegrown products. If you’re new to Taiwanese beauty, or T-beauty, here are a few reasons why you need these products in your skincare routine.

Quality Over Quantity

Quality Over Quantity
In comparison to its neighbors, Korea and Japan, Taiwan has very few beauty brands — but that's not a bad thing. “Taiwan only has a small handful of beauty manufacturing facilities,” said Jude Chao, a Taiwanese American beauty influencer. “There’s a baseline of quality and effectiveness that you don’t see in larger markets like Korea or Japan, where there’s a much bigger variance between manufacturers.” This makes it easy to trust in new Taiwanese brands emerging on the beauty scene. If it’s made in Taiwan, it’s going to be good!

Simple, Natural Beauty

Simple, Natural Beauty
While the ten step Korean skincare routine can be time-consuming and intimidating, T-beauty dilutes this down to four simple steps: cleanse, tone, moisturize and sheet mask. The Taiwanese beauty movement focuses on a simple, holistic approach to skin care by using high-quality, natural ingredients and techniques rooted in traditional Chinese medicine.

The beauty brand Purlisse, created by the Taiwanese American actress Jennifer Yen, offers products such as blue lotus cleansing milk that incorporate traditional ingredients like soy milk and white tea. For her, cleaning away the makeup, dirt, pollution and stress of the day is the first and one of the most important parts of her skin care routine.

Yen helped pioneer Taiwanese beauty in the U.S. when she founded Purlisse in 2008, which she was inspired to do after spending 15 hours a day on set under heavy makeup. “It wrecked my skin. I tried everything and nothing worked until I rediscovered my grandmother’s rituals,” Yen said, recalling the way her grandmother washed her face with soy milk. Now, she offers products to rejuvenate and maintain skin elasticity.

Another Taiwanese brand famed for its use of natural ingredients is 23.5N. The Tropic of Cancer at the 23.5°N latitude marks the northernmost point at which the sun directly shines overhead. It passes through 16 countries, most of which are deserts and grasslands; only through southern China and Taiwan does the Tropic of Cancer create the unique phenomenon of abundant rainfall and flourishing forests. Inspired by the natural beauty of these lush tropical regions, 23.5°N Skincare products are expertly crafted with powerful, plant-based active ingredients.

This inspiring brand proposes a wide range of series of skincare routines that can be used alone or in combination with each other to suit different skin types & needs : Sensitive & Problematic Skin, Oily & Acne Prone Skin, Dehydrated Skin, Uneven & Matured Skin and Dull & Thick Skin. Among the most commonly used ingredients of this brand we can find: tea, red pearl barley, bamboo, rice and even pineapple.

A Scientific Approach

A Scientific Approach
Understanding Asian skin problems and needs, some Asian skincare brands work closely with global biotechnology R&D labs in product development. Combining dermatology and biotechnology, they aim to deliver clinically proven results for healthy and beautiful skin.

Dr Wu is the motherlode of all medical skincare labels in Taiwan. Many celebrities count themselves fans of Dr Wu’s potent products, especially the Mandelic Acid Renewal and Vitamin C Whitening ranges. The former uses mandelic acid, an alpha hydroxy acid (AHA), as its star ingredient. Mandelic acid is at the frontier of effective anti-aging products, as it gently exfoliates the surface of one’s skin to reduce visible signs of aging. Dr Wu’s Vitamin C products are made not to whiten your skin in the literal sense, but to correct pigmentation issues like dark spots, even out your skin tone, and increase your face’s protective barrier against UV radiation.

Founded in 2005, Taiwan skincare brand Neogence offers laboratory-tested serums, masks and sonic cleansing brushes developed specifically for dry and sensitive Asian skin. Deriving its name from the words “neo” and “gene,” the brand provides safe and effective products, such as the Hyaluronic Acid Hydrating series is lauded for its effects on dry skin, while the Pore Solution series is ideal for oily, acne-prone skin.

Eco Friendly and Sustainable Skincare

Eco Friendly and Sustainable Skincare
Looking to take care of our environment using the ingredients that nature offers us, more and more brands are joining the zero waste movement.

Reise is one skincare brand that goes the extra mile when it comes to caring for our planet. As a green skincare brand, born out of a love for Taiwan, Reise takes action and inspires its customers to easily incorporate green ideas into daily life.

Reise’s beautiful bottles made from rice bran is just one of their efforts as a sustainability brand. Rice is the main food in Asia, rice fields are part of the collective memory in Taiwan, but tons of rice bran goes to waste each year along with its rich nutritions. In an effort to cut down waste and create environmental and humanistic awareness of rice agriculture, Reise makes their shampoo, lotions and bottles out of rice bran! They believe that ‘Zero waste is the real sustainable lifestyle.’ From product designing, material sourcing, product manufacturing, packaging and shipping, to disposing of waste, Reise devotes their efforts into each stage of the product life cycle to minimize the waste and the environmental damage.

Many of the techniques and ingredients used in Taiwanese beauty products also benefit from Taiwan’s high manufacturing and regulatory standards, including becoming one of first countries in Asia to ban animal testing in cosmetics, in 2016.

Taiwanese Skincare FTW

Whether you’re a local, or you’ve never stepped foot in Taiwan, the verdict seems to be overwhelmingly positive for this tiny island’s skincare brands. Making good use of local, natural ingredients and taking inspiration from generations of Chinese medicinal rituals means these products and approaches have been thoroughly tried and tested! Combining that with science and western medicine gives you the best of both worlds. Strict laws for manufacturing ensures the product quality is nothing short of excellent. Plus an essential ethos to keep our planet healthy, means it can provide these nourishing ingredients for centuries to come.

gabi+skin is proud to be part of this collective, and meet the high standards of natural, eco-friendly T-beauty. If you haven’t tried it yet, what are you waiting for?!

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