Last Thursday the Philippine press had the privilege of being one of the first in the world to see Shiseido's latest skincare line. The presentation was held at the Shiseido headquarters in Tokyo, and boy was it such an eye-opening hour and a half! The Japanese principals first discussed their research findings on the new generation - their motives, aspirations, and lifestyle trends.
The Shiseido headquarters
Did you know that in Japan, the average age is 46 versus the Philippines' 21 years old? The Japanese opt to make fewer and fewer children, and this has brought a lot of uncertainty to those in their early 20s and 30s. Instead of being with family that is directly related to one another, there is now what is called a "happy collective". Young people would forge solid relationships with those their own age, to sort of take away the loneliness of living alone, which appears to be the custom in Japan.
Shibuya, the pulse of Tokyo
There is also an emerging middle class that prioritizes not only value in their purchases, but in also patronizing a brand that they can relate with. The relationship is more like a patron supporting an artist. A brand's profile and presentation matter to these young consumers - if it's something that speaks to them, they are willing to pay a little more to support it.
The most important trend of all is this: young people prefer to be "true connoiseurs". Instead of experiencing things second-hand, they prefer to go out and explore on their own. They want real, live information and experiences. Hence, the birth of Shiseido's Watashi+ website that offers live advice on its users beauty problems. (Kinda like a blogger except the response is more in real-time.)
This was the research data that prompted Shiseido to create the Ibuki line, skincare that is guaranteed to keep up and adjust with the needs of our generation. Ibuki stands for breath, the life force, the catalyst that causes life to bloom. Ibuki products promise to alleviate the major skin concerns of people our age (25 to 35): visible pores, breakouts, and rough skin.
If you ask me, that's exactly what I need! I don't feel that I need to go for anti-aging products yet, and to be honest with you I am not one for skin whitening. I am not super oily nor am I super dry. Do you see why it's difficult to just commit to one skincare line? Ibuki, I think, is great maintenance skincare for my needs!
But wait, how does it work? It focuses on the stratum corneum, the topmost layer of our skin. It's a barrier that protects our skin from infection, dehydration, and stress. It's what feels powdery whenever we're dry - could be from stress within (poor diet, lack of sleep, stress) or outside (pollution, sun exposure).
Photo credit: Dermatology.about.com
The cells in this layer also tend to shrink more in younger skin versus older skin. It has about 15 layers that ideally should shed in order, but when our skin undergoes stress, the lower layers fall off and this causes premature micro-holes in our skin.
Shiitake Mushroom, Lamium Album, and Yuzu Seeds
Mr. Aoki, one of Shiseido's scientists, discussed the technology behind Ibuki. Ibuki basically nourishes the stratum corneum and helps it shed in the proper order and alignment with the following ingredients:
- Trehalose (extracted from the lamium album plant that can be revived even if it has been dehydrated) and filaggrin (an enzyme discovered by Shiseido that won them an IFSCC Award - the Oscars in the cosmetics science world). These two ingredients inhibit cell shrinkage and promote the Natural Moisturizing Factor (or NMF).
- Trimethyl Glycine (found in beet molasses) to clear out layers of stratum corneum evenly and in the right alignment.
- Yuzu Seed Extract to bring the base layer of cells in our epidermis to their healthiest state.
Whew okay I hope that wasn't too technical! Basically, the Shiseido Ibuki is supposed to help your skin be stronger and able to deal with internal and external stresses. Shiseido's research showed them an active, discerning young generation that needs product that can keep up with them - not the other way around! Hence the creation of Ibuki.
Love the watery Refining Moisturizer
Personally, I've been using the Gentle Cleanser, Refining Concentrate (which is a gel toner, so refreshing), and Refining Moisturizer which is the core product in the collection. Everything is light and freshly-scented! I have not experienced any breakouts too. I will definitely review the line for you very soon.
In the meantime, let me know what you think of Ibuki! It will be out in September and will replace Shiseido's The Skincare line. Watch out for it then!