Ah Japan, my favorite country… it’s such a wonderful place for skin care products! I’m set for another Japan trip sometime next year and I’m giddy with excitement already. But before that, let’s go ahead and start with a review of a really cool Japanese beauty product: Cow Beauty Soap!
Cow Beauty Soap is an ubiquitous beauty bar that’s often found in drugstores all over Japan. I was not able to hoard these soap bars during my Japan trip because of luggage issues. Good thing I got gifted with Cow Beauty soaps when a cousin came to Japan!
What is it: Cow Beauty Soap
The Cow Beauty soap is a milk-based beauty bar so popular, it’s considered as Japan’s version of the iconic Ivory soap (more on this later). The heritage brand that produces this soap was founded in 1909. The soap’s main ingredients are milk, milk fat, and squalene, no doubt to boost skin moisture, brighten the skin tone, and reduce wrinkles.
Cow Beauty soap has a strong jasmine scent that’s almost identical to Ivory soap’s signature fragrance. The Cow Beauty soap is a body soap and facial soap in one, it comes in individual packs as well as packs of 3s.
Ivory soap was our household soap as a child. This was during the 90s when Pure Gold was not a Filipino supermarket chain but a source of imported or Duty-Free products. My dad would drive all the way to Clark Airbase to hoard Ivory soaps (they come in these hugeass packs of 10s) and Hershey’s Kisses, hahaha!
A whiff of Cow Beauty soap brought me back to simpler times. I know the scent so well! I was surprised that the Cow beauty soap smells just like an Ivory soap because it’s supposed to be a milk soap. The difference is that the Cow’s scent is powdery, less floral. But this distinction is almost imperceptible.
I don’t know which brand copied which because Ivory and Cow are both heritage brands. I will say that Cow’s scent isn’t as cloying or sharp as Ivory’s signature scent.
The beauty soap does lather well, it produces a moderately-thick lather that feels so good against the skin. The soap lather washes off easily and you do feel a squeaky kind of clean. I have a mixed feeling about this. I feel that the soap is somewhat drying when used on the face but not so much when used all over the body.
Since the soap contains milk and milk fats, it’s supposed to hydrate, soften, as well as brighten the skin. I’ve used this soap close to a month and so far, there’s no noticeable difference as far as my skin tone is concerned. I don’t think it lightened my skin or whitened dark areas. However, this soap isn’t as drying as a regular soap. I do feel like my skin is smoother.
I used this as a face soap for about a week and I don’t recommend it. I was somewhat apprehensive about using this for the face but I did it anyway. Left my skin rough and bumpy so I decided to quit it after 7 days.
Is Cow beauty soap better than Dove or Ivory? I’ve used Dove and Ivory extensively for years and I can say that the Cow Beauty soap is not milder in comparison. It just felt like an ordinary bath soap when compared with Dove and Ivory, to be honest. That being said, it doesn’t leave my skin dry as the Sahara. I feel that it didn’t brighten my skin tone but then again, I do have fair skin so any changes won’t be as noticeable.