Buying skincare and makeup in Tokyo sometimes is just stumbling to the right places, but it doesn’t have to be! I’d like to simplify shopping and give you two easy walking areas to get all your make-up and skincare needs handled. I actually ended up making a google map that you can save for easy directions and access.
I’ve recommended shops located near two train stations Shinjuku and Harajuku. But just in case you’re parked somewhere else for your visit in Tokyo I’ve added a few points of interest.
I’ve also listed if places are tax free or not from my experience.
Google has allowed me to make notes on each map point so you can click through and see points of interest, but below I’m going to explain them all as well.
Skincare and Make-up in Tokyo – Harajuku area
Harajuku is slowly becoming one of the better places to shop for skincare and make-up in tokyo. Tourism has really ramped that up and there are several good places to check out between crepes and style gawking.
jp site: etudehouse.jp
Newly built Etude House on Takashita street is one of the wonderful improvements to Takeshita. The pink castle outside and jewelbox inside hold lots of stock and it’s the best place to shop for Etude House in Tokyo. From my experience they seem to offer more novelties (freebies) and if you’re searching for a particular Etude House product you’re most likely to find it here.
Matsumoto Kiyoshis are immediately recognizable for their garish mustard and blue colorways.
japanese:マツモトキヨシ（マツキヨ sometimes shortened to）
Matsumoto Kiyoshi is a drugstore chain found most anywhere in Tokyo. It’s a great place to buy drugstore brands (Kate, Visee, Hada Labo, Shiseido, Canmake) of skincare and make-up in Tokyo or the rest of Japan. The two floor Takeshita shop is one of the larger ones, but can also be a bit packed. I also recommend the Ikebukuro location Sunshine-dori. But if your time is cramped maybe this is better saved for going to the one near your hotel?
Ainz & Tulpe
address:150-0001 東京都渋谷区神宮前1-13-14 原宿クエストビル
One of the hidden gems on Omotensando. Ainz & Tulpe is a two floor megastore of skincare and make-up in Tokyo. If you’re hunting for low or high priced Japanese brands it’s your best shot to find them here. Well lit and not as packed as Matsumoto Kiyoshi. They also have a location in Shinjuku and Shibuya’s Centa-gai but it’s not as well stocked.
Les Merveilleuses by Laduree
La Foret – 1.5 floor
It’s like stepping into Versailles but with make-up. Located inside La Foret the shopping experience is always wonderful. Browse all their collection, I have yet to be told anything is out of stock unless it was seasonal. Recommend picking up a blush of your skin type (cream for dry, powder for normal to oily).
Mitsukoshi Ginza is the other store in Tokyo. Others in Kyoto, Osaka and Nagoya.
The Shu Uemura pop-up in Shinjuku
Omotesando Hills Mall – 1st Floor
address: 東京都渋谷区 神宮前4-12-10 表参道ヒルズ西館1F
Located in the ritzy Omotesando Hills mall, this Shu Uemura location is quite chic. But it’s also right on the ground floor and has a street entrance. The store is always packed with lots of staff and you can get in and out. Their oil cleanser is my Holy Grail item even if it’s pricey.
Skincare and Make-up in Tokyo – Shinjuku Area
Outside the east exit hip young mall Lumine EST should be your first stop for all types of make-up and then spread out walking to Tokyo’s Korea town, Shin-Okubo.
Lumine EST – 2nd Floor
jp site: etudehouse.jp
Not as big as the Takeshita location or as well stocked. This shop on the 2nd floor near Starbucks still has lots of options to see.
Inside a Plaza store. Lots of displays and well lit.
Lumine EST – 5th Floor
japanese: never used
Plaza often has brands I have a hard time finding at other places. Excel drugstore make-up is one of them. Excel brow pencils are a savior if you are blonde or even a redhead and want the right color brow pencil. Lots of quirky gadgets, snacks and bath salts even roomwear and cups as well. The Shibuya 109 basement level two store is better stocked for make-up but this is second. Also the Plaza Ikebukuro Sunshine City store is nice.
Not Tax Free
Lumine EST – 4th Floor
jp site: skinfood.jp
A great place to sample and pick up tiny items, but sadly Skinfood Japan is very overpriced. A face cream may be marked 2x the original amount. Check your on-line prices before making any big purchases.
Tax free over 5,000 yen
Lumine EST – Basement 2
Located on basement level one next to the elevators this cosme store is not the best lit and can be a pickle getting to for a first timer. All that aside @cosme store is actually the manifestation of cosme.net a ranking and review site used by thousands of women in Japan. It’s like Make-up Alley with a better interface. They also give out awards every year, kind of like “Allure’s Best of Beauty” winners. Make-up companies happily sticker on their products that they are #1 in the @Cosme rankings. Too bad the location and the lighting drive this down a little, but tons of good make-up brands high and drugstore and rankings clearly shown in front of make-up products.
Their big ranking system and horrible lighting. See all those stickers on their products, that goes in all stores not just the @cosme store
Marui Shibuya 5th floor also has an @cosme store, Ueno Marui and Lumine Ikebukuro are other locations. (Marked on the map)
If you are in Osaka. I 120% recommend going to the @cosme store inside the giant Tsutaya on popular Dotonbori in Shinsaibashi. It’s on the 4th floor and is everything that the @cosme store in Shinjuku isn’t. Well lit, wood paneled, lots of space. Since it’s inside Tsutaya they even have lots of magazines related to beauty right on the same floor. And there’s bench seating to sit and read. And!!! It’s open until 12:00!! If you love make-up or skincare even a little and you’re in Osaka, do not miss it.
…also in Lumine EST a MAC store (b1), BodyShop (b1), Paul & Joe Beauty (b1)
Jill Stuart Beauty
Shinjuku – Lumine 2 2nd Floor
Jill Stuart gets a lot of love for its packaging, bright girly colors but also for its aesthetic of using gel colors and shimmer. Its sister brands are Paul & Joe Beaute and Les Merveilleuses by Laduree. Nestled next to Lumine EST is Lumine 2 in Shinjuku.
Shinjuku East Exit Underground – Subnade 2nd floor
DHC calls itself “direct skincare” selling out of tons of shops inside Japan. Its biggest love overseas is the DHC Deep Cleansing Oil for make-up removal. Inside Japan they’re know for peddling tons of diet pills and protein shakes. Imagine if Slimfast did make-up? Kind of DHC. The easiest one to get to in Shinjuku is inside Subnade an underground shopping complex reached by the JR East Exit or going down many of the staircases in Kabukicho noted with “Subnade”. But there are several located around the Tokyo area (Ikebukuro, Shibuya).
You might want to check if Matsumoto Kiyoshi has the DHC product you’re looking for first instead of going on this hunt. They do stock a small selection.
Shinjuku West Exit
The famed simple shop has launched a line of make-up that’s made with basic ingredients and is praised by some. More sought after by skincare and make-up lovers are the jars and acrylic storage that make hoarding that much easier. A pass if you’re not deep into skincare or makeup or worth checking out. Muji is one of my favorite places to buy gifts for others.
Shinjuku New South Exit
address: 151-8580 東京都渋谷区千駄ヶ谷5-24-2
This big department store can be hassle to get to sometimes, but for that reason maybe it is also quiet. If you’d like to buy high end make-up and get pampered I really recommend this department store. When I was in college this was my horrible day at school escape.
Avoid: Shinjuku Isetan. Crowded with tourists definitely not the pampering experience one should expect with high end cosmetics.
Other department store reccomendations: Shibuya Station Tokyu, Ginza Takashimaya
Don Quijote (Donki)
Admittedly this is a walk from Shinjuku station but a pleasant one. However you can also get off at the Shin-Okubo JR Station via the Yamanote Line or the Okubo JR Station via the Chuo Line. This is my favorite Don Quijote inside Tokyo as I’ve said often. Lots of space, lots of things to buy and see.
Tourist warning: Donki loves to triple wrap their packaging to prevent shop lifters buying cosmetics often requires scissors and the tools from Q and James Bond to open it up.
Other recommended Donkis: Ikebukuro East exit, Nakano Broadway, Ueno, and Roppongi
Donkis to avoid for better Donkis: Shibuya, Shinjuku
Protip: Right next to the Okubo Donki is delicious Hotteok shop or ホットク in Japanese Hotoke definitely must try!
The best Korean skincare and make-up store in Tokyo. ShinOkubo aka Korean town especially since the newest Korean wave has hit has put up so many tiny Korean skincare stores. Or its skincare mixed with Big Bang merch. They’re all fine and good but Skinholic stands out. Well lit, lots of tester bottles, new products. Mask super packs. This is my one stop shop for Korean skincare and make-up. One of my favorite things about Skinholic is they arrange most products by their type. So you can compare BB creams side by side without fluttering to one brand or another.
Inside Skinholic (source)
I look in other shops in Shin-Okubo but I usually only end up buying from Skinholic. Their selection and displays can’t be beat.
The Face Shop
address: 169-0072 東京都新宿区大久保1-12-1
Located right near Skinholic, Korean brand The Face Shop launched its own stand-alone store in Shin-Okubo. It’s a classy two storied affair that has tons of stock.
Whoa Mitsu you listed like 90 places… tl;dr
Sorry I love make-up and skincare and I want to give you ALL THE OPTIONS! If you’re not as skincare and make-up obsessed or just short on time my top catch-all types of cosmetics and skincare recommendations are: @cosme, ainz&tulipe, Matsumoto Kiyoshi or Donki, and skinholic. I can’t lower any more than that, you’re a devil for asking .
Before you leave out the airport! Yojiya
The girl the mirror is their famous logo. Pictured: blotting papers, Yuzu lip cream and Sakura soap
Extra shout-out before you leave! Yojiya Kyoto skincare and make-up in all Tokyo airports
address: ALL AIRPORT TERMINALS IN TOKYO
Yojiya, Kyoto’s long term brand famous for their blotting papers is located in all terminals of Narita and Haneda airports. Personal favorites are the yuzu lip cream and their selection of soaps in Japanese flavors like matcha, sakura and yuzu. They make great gifts and in airport they won’t count against your luggage weight! Yojiya is also located in the train station of Shin-Osaka and all throughout Kyoto.
Although Korean brand Tony Moly once had a shop in Shinjuku it is since gone. Now they have a website (tonymoly.jp) that does on-line orders. Missha (missha.jp) has some stores in odd places around Japan although not many convenient to tourism. Missha’s Ikebukuro store in Lumine on the 7th floor is the best bet (171-0021 東京都豊島区西池袋1-11-1 ルミネ池袋7階). Missha and Tony Moly are both found in Skinholic along with select goods in Plaza stores.
…a map and everything. Man I feel like today’s post is the most organized I’ve ever been. Gudetama me is so proud of this. Coming up the companion to this post. Where to go to find individual Japanese brands of make-up by store.
I like to blog and review about kawaii make-up from Japan and Korea. Check all the posts here.