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The Seriously Good Product You Need To Know If You’re Over 40

skin softener

Ever heard of “skin softeners”? I hadn’t either until recently, but apparently Japanese women have been using them in their skincare routines for decades! And after taking a break from toners and trying one for myself, it’s easy to see why—skin softeners are super hydrating and I’m already impressed at the results!

If you’re looking to switch up your skincare routine and revitalize your skin, you might want to give a skin softener a try for yourself! By the end of this post, you’ll know everything you need to know about how they work, the benefits they offer, and more!

Related: 7 Anti-Aging Skincare Myths That Need To Be Debunked

skin softener

What Are Skin Softeners?

Skin softeners (which go by several other names including essences, waters, and infusions) provide similar benefits to serums and moisturizers. Designed to be applied to clean, dry skin immediately after cleansing, skin softeners help rehydrate and soften skin, and can even boost the effectiveness of your other skincare products.

skin softener

Skin softeners make a great alternative to standard toners, especially for those of us with aging skin. I used toners throughout my 30s and 40s to help shrink my pores and prevent breakouts, but once I entered my 50s, they quickly became too harsh and too drying. Once I finally made the switch from my toner to a softener, I only wished I had done it sooner!

skin softener

The main problem with toners is their tendency to strip skin of its natural oils. And as we get age, our skin is already producing less and less moisture, resulting in dryness, deep wrinkles, and other issues. Using a toner makes these issues worse, while using a skin softener helps nourish and hydrate skin, making them the clear choice for us “mature adults!”

skin softener

How Do I Use One?

To apply my skin softener, I typically dispense a dime-size amount into my palm and then gently pat it onto my face. You could also apply the product to a cotton pad or microfiber cloth first, and then use that to apply it to your skin. Regardless of which method you prefer, make sure you apply it gently and avoid wiping or rubbing your skin.

Another thing to keep in mind is that skin softeners tend to be a bit thicker than your typical toner (think less watery, more milky). But thanks to hydrating ingredients like natural plant and seed oils, your skin should absorb the product effortlessly. 

skin softener

Which Skin Softener Should I Buy?

After perusing the selection on Amazon, I ended up choosing the Shiseido Treatment Softener. I chose it partly because it’s one of the few options that’s readily available in the U.S., and partly because it’s such a favorite among skincare enthusiasts!

This particular formula features natural ingredients like primrose oil and Japanese yuzu extract to promote smooth and healthy-looking skin. It also includes hamamelis and mukurossi extracts, both of which are powerful antioxidants that help improve skin texture and reduce fine lines.

Since I first started using this skin softener several weeks ago, I’ve definitely noticed a difference in how firm and hydrated my skin looks. I’ve also been enjoying how gentle and soothing it feels to apply, especially since I have such sensitive and easily irritated skin!

Now that I know what a difference using a skin softener can make for my skin, I don’t think I’ll ever go back to using a toner! And if your skin could use a boost of hydration as well, why not give one a try for yourself?

Have you tried any skin softeners yet?

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Jill Nystul (aka Jillee)

Jill Nystul is an accomplished writer and author who founded the blog One Good Thing by Jillee in 2011. With over 30 years of experience in homemaking, she has become a trusted resource for contemporary homemakers by offering practical solutions to everyday household challenges.
I share creative homemaking and lifestyle solutions that make your life easier and more enjoyable!

About Jillee

Jill Nystul

Jill’s 30 years of homemaking experience, make her the trusted source for practical household solutions.

About Jillee


Beauty Tips

  • This is pricey!! $64 at Amazon…$44 at Walmart. I found the whole line at Walmart. Lots of different products but be ready for the price. Maybe at some point, Jillee can come up with the concoction for us?? ;-)

  • I decided to give this product a try because I have loved so many great things I’ve seen and tried on this website. I have rosacea on my cheeks, which means redness and dryness, and it is hard to cover up with makeup … but after only two – yes, two – applications, I can say my skin looks and feels significantly less dry, making my foundation work more effectively.

    Thank you Jillee for sharing all of your tips and secrets with us!

  • Thank you to all the ladies who commented. Very informative and goes to show there are always other options. I personally like hyaluronic acid formulas (Neutrogena Hydro Boost). They have helped my dry skin retain moisture.

  • I have recently tried a free sample from riversol.com and am pleased with the products and they are vegan and not tested on animals. The sample includes a cleanser, moisturizer and a serum as well as a glycolic peel.

  • Do you use this in addition to your recipe using essential oils for anti- aging skin? I have dry skin and have all my life. I am 55. I never have used a toner except for a very short time when I was in high school and thought that’s what high school girls should do! Never had teenage acne issues. Always trying to hydrate, hydrate, hydrate.

  • Shiseido products are tested on animals. Most personal care items from Asian countries are animal tested. Korean, Chinese, Japanese fragrances, masks, makeup etc … choose accordingly.

    • Korea went Cruelty-Free in 2018 but if the individual company still sells in China then China does animal testing which is horrid. ANY company that sells in China condones animal testing whether it’s Peter Thomas Roth or Maybelline or as the original post promotes; Shishedo. Here’s an link to find Korean beauty that’s actually cruelty-free.

    • Gumdrop, it’s not either/or. The U.S. also hasn’t banned animal testing, so don’t blame their lax ingredients standards on a lack of animal testing! The EU has plenty of unacceptable ingredients compared to the US, and they banned animal testing for cosmetics a while ago (doesn’t mean companies that test don’t get around it somehow). If anything, testing on animals allows MORE ingredients to be approved simply because different species react in different ways, so companies can pick and choose what tests they run to get the results they want :(

  • I’m over 40 . But dry skin isn’t much of an issue. My skin is more on the oily side and I still have the occasional pimple breakouts. I wish you had shown some other cheaper versions. I just can’t afford to pay $42. Dollars for this.

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