Looking for something quintessentially Japanese for that perfect gift or souvenir? Each month, we round up some of our favorite artisanal items made by local craftsmen and designers.
Thera The Oriental Beauty By Alhambra Inc.
This organic skincare brand borrows ancient wisdom of good health and beauty from the Nara period. Its products are developed by modifying medicinal herb therapies originated and used in ancient Nara and the product package is made with environmentally friendly paper. ¥1,500-1,800, www.thera.jp
Qinuce By Qinuce Inc.
Using valuable domestic raw silk as its primary ingredient – the same material used to make kimono for the traditional Kyo-yuzen store Chiso – this brand was created as part of a silk revival project, established to support the Japanese sericulture and kimono industries. ¥2,980-7,900, qinude.jp
Momohada Cosme By Remax Japan Co., LTD
Arashiyama Momohada Cosme is a natural cosmetics brand that is made in Kyoto’s Arashiyama area and incorporates Japanese ingredients into all their products. Created using unripe peach extract as well as other natural ingredients such as extract from Mizuo yuzu, Arashiyama Momohada Cosme’s offerings are top quality and won’t break the bank, either. ¥1,500-2,200, momohada.com
Kiwamifude Liquid Eyeliner By Koji Honpo Co., LTD
This eyeliner was inspired by Nara-fude brushes, an important traditional craft of Nara Prefecture known for its use of extremely fine hair. The resulting brush is gentle to the touch, absorbs liquid well and achieves the right amount of firmness for a smooth application. Each item is carefully manufactured by hand. ¥1,400, www.koji-honpo.co.jp/kiwamifude
Scerscin Rich Moisture Serum By Scramble Co., LTD
This unique booster serum fights skin dullness caused by everyday stress. Observing how so many people these days are suffering from accumulated stress, this company developed the serum to approach six internal and external stressors to improve skin brightness and cornification and help the renewal of skin cells. From ¥1,980, scerscin.jp
Yunoka White Serum By Hk Corporation
The world’s first cosmetic product that contains extract derived from mitsumata paper bush tree bark. Regular use is said to help to prevent the appearance of dark spots on the skin, while also maintaining clarity, smoothness and resilience. ¥8,000 per bottle, ¥20,000 for a set of three, bihadanoshinzui.jp/yunoka
Marinus FUCacollaGEN Cosmetics Series By Kesemo Marinus LTD
Made with high-quality shark fin collagen, this range boasts a superb moisturizing effect. Those with sustainability concerns, fear not: captured blue sharks are eaten and only the leftover inedible parts are used to make these effective and gentle products. ¥2,500-¥5,000, kesemo-marinus.com
Pineapple And Soy Milk By Suzuki Herb Laboratory
Created in the hope of helping people who struggle with unwanted excess hair, this range of pineapple and soy milk lotions inhibits hair growth rather than removing it. Everyday usage will also leave your skin smooth and toned. ¥2,500-¥4,000, s-herb.com
Murasakino Organic By Minnano Okueigenji Co., LTD
This organic cosmetic brand uses purple groomwell root, an endangered native plant from Shiga Prefecture. By simultaneously protecting and promoting use of this indigenous species and avoiding any coloring agents or petroleum-derived additives, this brand is working to protect one of Japan’s rarest plant species. ¥2,700-4,500, www.murasakino.organic
All featured products are part of Omotenashi Selection, a project that brings together fine handcrafted items from around Japan and shares them with international audiences.
For more info, go to omotenashinippon.jp/selection/en