THE IN-TRAY

Now is the time for the ultimate Japanese beauty ritual at home; Shiseido shows us how

Shiseido is all about making your skin stronger by protecting and boosting its barrier — the easiest way to future-proof it. So these six products, trialled by MECCA HQ, are all you need to create an at-home Japanese beauty ritual. From how it feels on our skin to what it does to our face, here's what we thought of them.

ZARA TRIED: WHITE LUCENT OVERNIGHT CREAM AND MASK

“Rich gel cream reads like an oxymoron, but that’s exactly what this is. This is the dreamiest night cream texture, ever. Big call, but it holds. It reminds me of cherry blossoms and Japanese jellied desserts in the best way possible — but the label tells me that technically it’s got hawthorn extract, green floral and plumeria scents and Yoshino cherry extract which all work together to make your skin bright and more even. It is SO moisturising. I have normal skin in the summer months and dry skin in winter, so while it might be a bit much for summer for me, I will practically be bathing in this come winter time. Having said that, I have been applying the absolutely thinnest layer before going to bed (a little goes a long way) as a night cream on its own without any serums and now don’t wear foundation or tinted moisturiser, and just dot on concealer and pat it in. So that’s saying something!”

LOU TRIED: ULTIMUNE POWER INFUSING CONCENTRATE

“It turns out that The Ultimune Power Infusing Concentrate landed on my desk at just the right time. All the products in my routine have be used up so this has been the only hydrator I’ve been using for the past five days. It says to use two pumps morning and night, I’ve been using three-to-four and I’ve been taking the time to really massage it into the skin. Heading to bed with dewy, glazed skin, and by the time I’ve read a few pages of my book it’s all absorbed. I’m feeling pretty bouncy by morning and turns out that it’s the accidental routine switch-up I needed.”

KERRI TRIED: BENEFIANCE WRINKLERESIST24 NIGHT CREAM

“I’ve read that our collagen supply drops once we hit 26 years old, which—in my skin-obsessed mind—is doomsday. So as my age increases and my collagen count decreases, I’m doing every little thing I can (avoiding knives and needles) to futureproof my skin and delay the onset of lines and wrinkles. While I might not look like the assumed target audience for this night cream, I have so much trust in Shiseido’s principles of ‘defend and regenerate’ and couldn’t wait to give it ago. On first impression, I loved the cream’s scent, and was stoked that it came with a cute little hygiene scoop. It’s thick and rich—without feeling like it would clog my pores—and was so ridiculously smooth on application that I even added a little more cream to experience it again (for reference, I ditched my usual serums for the full, unadulterated experience). When I woke up, my skin was full of bounce—I could tell that the cream had sunken into my skin to work its magic, but still left the surface feeling hydrated and dewy. After five nights of consecutive use, I noticed my skin was brighter, firmer and generally more hydrated (still feeling hydrated even after I cleansed in the morning). She’s a keeper!”

TOM TRIED: ESSENTIAL ENERGY MOISTURISING CREAM

I’ve never been the type of person to buy multiple creams and serums for day and night as I’m worried about them breaking me out. So when I invest in a new moisturiser it needs to be a knock-out, and this one is just that. I feel hydrated and nourished when putting it on, never oily or heavy—my biggest skincare turn-offs. The texture is incredibly silky, it glides over my skin and absorbs in minutes. One of my friends never lets anyone see him for at least half an hour after applying moisturiser because he hates that slightly greasy look, so I’ll encourage him to switch over to this. Plus, it smells so good that I accidentally put my nose in it (an application method I don’t recommend).

KAT TRIED: PERFECT CLEANSING OIL

What a pleasant surprise! When the Shiseido Perfect Cleansing Oil landed on my desk, i t couldn’t have come at a more perfect time. I am in the market for a new cleanser and keen to test, trial and hopefully find my new everyday cleanser. Firstly, this cleanser smells like liquid heaven. It has a really gentle, pretty scent and glides over my face easily. It was unusual to experience a cleaner that doesn’t foam up—but I liked this. The Shiseido experience is very calming and gentle; interestingly, I found my skin to be really hydrated and glowy afterwards and not stripped of my natural oils.

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