A-Z of Japanese Beauty. A is for Arbutin


Skincare Guide- Arbutin-2



With cosmetics and skincare, ingredients really do matter.

But will so many ingredients being touted as the latest and greatest in the beauty world, it’s little wonder that most of us can feel a little over whelmed, when trying to decide on which are the best to use (and which ones to avoid) to achieve beautiful clear, glowing skin.

So, as part of a series of Tokyo Beauty Book posts, I am going run through the A-Z of the most interesting, effective and most commonly used ingredients in Japanese skincare and cosmetics. So next time you head to the drugstore or beauty store you know exactly what ingredients you should be looking for in your serum or sheet mask.


So to get started with A for Arbutin.


ArbutinA plant derivative that helps lighten dark spots and freckles on the skin.



What is arbutin?

Arbutin is a molecule extracted from the bearberry plant, which  functions as a melanin inhibiting substance to help stop dark spots (freckles and sun spots) from darkening. With consistent use, arbutin has shown  it can effectively lighten dark spots and freckles and brighten the complexion .

Arbutin works by inhibiting the enzymes that stimulates pigment producing cells.


Japanese skincare products that contain Arbutin.

Arbutin works best in a product that is worn on the skin for a long length of time, so it’s best to look for a lotion, serum or cream rather than a mask or cleanser.

Here are three great Japanese skincare products that contain Arbutin.


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Hada Labo Shiro-jyun Clear Lotion ¥1,200.

This popular lotion is fast gaining a cult following around the world. In one step this light lotion tones, moisturises and brightens the skin for a luminous complexion.


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Tunemakers Arbutin Serum (10ml) ¥1,620.

The Tunemakers range contains a concentrated serum of arbutin, that can be applied directly to stubborn dark spots and freckles, or for an all over more radiant skin brightening effect, mix a few drops with your moisturising cream or lotion.


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Kiku Masumune Sake Skin Lotion ¥799

This great value lotion contains primarily of premium sake mixed with arbutin, amino acids and placenta to transform rough, dehydrated skin to smooth, hydrated, clear skin in no time.


Where to buy these products in Tokyo?


Hada Labo- Available at all Japanese drugstores.

Tunemakers- Available at AP American Pharmacy, Ainz & Tulpe and Plaza.

Kiku Masumune- Available @Cosme

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