• Top 23 Best Japanese Body Milks in 2021 - Tried and True! (Kose, Muji, and More) 1
  • Top 23 Best Japanese Body Milks in 2021 - Tried and True! (Kose, Muji, and More) 2
  • Top 23 Best Japanese Body Milks in 2021 - Tried and True! (Kose, Muji, and More) 3
  • Top 23 Best Japanese Body Milks in 2021 - Tried and True! (Kose, Muji, and More) 4
  • Top 23 Best Japanese Body Milks in 2021 - Tried and True! (Kose, Muji, and More) 5

Top 23 Best Japanese Body Milks in 2021 - Tried and True! (Kose, Muji, and More)

Body milks are lighter than creams and offer great moisturizing. Their consistency makes them easy to use over the whole body quickly, but they're gentle enough to use on the face as well. Japan has many good body milks, such as Nivea and Biore from Kao, products from Kose, Kracie, and Johnson & Johnson's Japan division. How can you choose? 


Our editors searched Japanese e-commerce sites such as Amazon, Rakuten, and Yahoo! Shopping for the best Japanese body milks available online. We then picked out the most popular products and tested them. We focused on two things:


  1. Moisturizing power
  2. Non-stickiness


We then ranked the products and put what we learned into a buying guide to help you choose the best Japanese body milks available online.

  • Last updated: 01-12-2021
  • 62 views
Table of Contents

What is Body Milk, Anyway?

What is Body Milk, Anyway?

Body milk, body cream, body lotion - have you ever wondered what the difference is? And more importantly, which one is right for you?


The main difference is the amounts of water and oils. Body creams have the most oil, and lotions have the least. Body milk falls somewhere in between the two.


This means it has more moisturizing power than lotion but isn't as greasy as cream. The smooth, silky texture makes it perfect for those who need high moisturizing power but don't like to feel sticky.

Top 23 Best Japanese Body Milks

We picked out some of the most popular products and tested them for how well they moisturized and how sticky they felt. Then we ranked the top 23 Japanese body milks available online.

Japanese prices for some of the products are given, but they've been converted into US dollars to make it easy for you.

1
Japaneseコーセープレシャスガーデン ボディミルク
Fragrance-freeNo
ScentRelaxing Flower
Amount6.8 fl. oz.
Moisturizing power5.0
Non-stickiness5.0
Overall score5.0
2

Johnson & Johnson JapanAroma Milk

7 pack

$119.00

Japaneseジョンソン・エンド・ジョンソンジョンソンボディケア エクストラケア 高保湿ローション
Fragrance-freeNo
ScentJasmine
Amount6.8 fl. oz.
Moisturizing power5.0
Non-stickiness4.0
Overall score4.7
3

KracieAroma Resort Body Milk

$18.49

Japaneseクラシエアロマリゾートボディミルク
Fragrance-freeNo
ScentDreamy Bloom Rose
Amount6.8 fl. oz.
Moisturizing power5.0
Non-stickiness4.0
Overall score4.7
4
Japanese花王ニベア スキンミルク クリーミィ
Fragrance-freeNo
ScentUnscented
Amount6.8 fl. oz.
Moisturizing power5.0
Non-stickiness3.0
Overall score4.40
5

ColoursArgelan Moist Body Milk

$20.23

Japaneseカラーズアルジェラン モイストボディミルク フローラル
Fragrance-freeNo
ScentFloral
Amount7.4 fl. oz.
Moisturizing power4.5
Non-stickiness4.0
Overall score4.35
6

Kao BioreTegotae Moisturizing Bath Wrapping Milk

$31.30

Japanese花王ビオレTEGOTAE お風呂場のうるおいラッピングミルク
Fragrance-freeYes
ScentNone
Amount5.1 fl. oz.
Moisturizing power5.0
Non-stickiness2.0
Overall score4.1
7

Kanebo CosmeticsRMK Body Milk

$49.14

Japaneseカネボウ化粧品ボディミルク <LC>
Fragrance-freeNo
ScentLemon Citrus
Amount6.8 fl. oz.
Moisturizing power4.5
Non-stickiness3.0
Overall score4.05
8

MandomDear Flora Oil in Body Milk

$15.99

Japaneseマンダム ディアフローラ オイルイン ボディミルク フローラルブーケ
Fragrance-freeno
ScentFloral Bouquet
Amount8.1 fl. oz.
Moisturizing power3.5
Non-stickiness5.0
Overall score3.95
9

MujiBody Milk for Sensitive Skin

$9.62

Japanese良品計画敏感肌用ボディミルク
Fragrance-freeYes
ScentNone
Amount8.5 fl. oz.
Moisturizing power4.5
Non-stickiness2.0
Overall score3.75
10

Ida LaboratoriesFiancee Body Milk

$16.00

Japanese井田ラボラトリーズフィアンセ ボディミルクローション ピュアシャンプーの香り
Fragrance-freeNo
ScentPure Shampoo
Amount6 fl. oz.
Moisturizing power3.5
Non-stickiness4.0
Overall score3.65
11

Ayura LaboratoriesSpirit of Ayura Aroma Body

$39.99

Japaneseアユーララボラトリーズスピリットオブアユーラ アロマボディー
Fragrance-freeNo
ScentFloral Green
Amount5.1 fl. oz.
Moisturizing power3.0
Non-stickiness5.0
Overall score3.6
12

Kao NiveaPremium Moisture Body Milk

$12.89

Japanese花王ニベア プレミアム ボディミルク モイスチャー
Fragrance-freeNo
ScentRose
Amount6.8 fl. oz.
Moisturizing power3.0
Non-stickiness5.0
Overall score3.6

Compare the Best Japanese Body Milks

Image
1
Kose Precious Garden Body Milk 1

Kose

2
Johnson & Johnson Japan Aroma Milk 1

Johnson & Johnson Japan

3
Kracie Aroma Resort Body Milk 1

Kracie

4
Kao Nivea Skin Milk Creamy 1

Kao Nivea

5
Colours Argelan Moist Body Milk 1

Colours

6
Kao Biore Tegotae Moisturizing Bath Wrapping Milk 1

Kao Biore

7
Kanebo Cosmetics RMK Body Milk 1

Kanebo Cosmetics

8
Mandom Dear Flora Oil in Body Milk 1

Mandom

9
Muji Body Milk for Sensitive Skin 1

Muji

10
Ida Laboratories Fiancee Body Milk 1

Ida Laboratories

11
Ayura Laboratories Spirit of Ayura Aroma Body 1

Ayura Laboratories

12
Kao Nivea Premium Moisture Body Milk 1

Kao Nivea

Name

Precious Garden Body Milk

Aroma Milk

Aroma Resort Body Milk

Skin Milk Creamy

Argelan Moist Body Milk

Tegotae Moisturizing Bath Wrapping Milk

RMK Body Milk

Dear Flora Oil in Body Milk

Body Milk for Sensitive Skin

Fiancee Body Milk

Spirit of Ayura Aroma Body

Premium Moisture Body Milk

Features

A Perfect Score! mybest's Top Choice!

Top of the Class in Moisturizing Power

Strong Moisturizing Power With a Smooth Finish

Very Hydrating Body Milk but a Bit Oily

Well-Balanced Moisturizing and Minimal Stickiness

Really Hydrating! But it Doesn't Have the Greatest Finish

Decent Moisturizing but Slightly Sticky

Smooth and Dry Finish, but Needs More Hydration

Another Body Milk That's Moisturizing but Sticky

A Great Scent but Could be More Moisturizing

Not Heavy or Sticky at All but With Average Nourishment

A Smooth Finish but Needs More Moisturizing Power

Price$23.50$119.00$18.49$18.66$20.23$31.30$49.14$15.99$9.62$16.00$39.99$12.89
Japaneseコーセープレシャスガーデン ボディミルクジョンソン・エンド・ジョンソンジョンソンボディケア エクストラケア 高保湿ローション クラシエアロマリゾートボディミルク花王ニベア スキンミルク クリーミィカラーズアルジェラン モイストボディミルク フローラル花王ビオレTEGOTAE お風呂場のうるおいラッピングミルクカネボウ化粧品ボディミルク <LC>マンダム ディアフローラ オイルイン ボディミルク フローラルブーケ良品計画敏感肌用ボディミルク井田ラボラトリーズフィアンセ ボディミルクローション ピュアシャンプーの香りアユーララボラトリーズスピリットオブアユーラ アロマボディー花王ニベア プレミアム ボディミルク モイスチャー
Fragrance-freeNoNoNoNoNoYesNonoYesNoNoNo
ScentRelaxing FlowerJasmineDreamy Bloom RoseUnscentedFloralNoneLemon CitrusFloral BouquetNonePure ShampooFloral GreenRose
Amount6.8 fl. oz.6.8 fl. oz.6.8 fl. oz.6.8 fl. oz.7.4 fl. oz.5.1 fl. oz.6.8 fl. oz.8.1 fl. oz.8.5 fl. oz.6 fl. oz.5.1 fl. oz. 6.8 fl. oz.
Moisturizing power5.05.05.05.04.55.04.53.54.53.53.03.0
Non-stickiness5.04.04.03.04.02.03.05.02.04.05.05.0
Overall score5.04.74.74.404.354.14.053.953.753.653.63.6
Link

Products That Didn't Make the Cut- and Why They Didn't

A lot of these left us with a sticky or greasy feeling, some weren't moisturizing enough, and some had the worst of both worlds.

They Were Just Average in Moisturizing and Non-Stickiness

They Were Just Average in Moisturizing and Non-Stickiness

Moist, Diane Body Milk from Nature Labs has a formula with dipotassium glycyrrhizinate and placenta extract for smooth and toned skin. It spreads well and is easy to use daily, but moisturizing and stickiness were both just average.


Moist, Diane Botanical was even more average. Aside from not containing seven ingredients many avoid, such as ethanol, parabens, and petroleum-based surfactants, there's nothing specifically good or bad to say about it.


Matsukiyo Body Milk is weakly acidic to balance your skin's pH. It contains petroleum jelly, shea butter and honey. Moisturizing was okay but not enough for those with dry skin. The texture is nice, too, but it has a somewhat sticky finish.

These Were Too Sticky

These Were Too Sticky

Natu Savon Select "Softymo" body milk from Kose has murumuru and shea butters. Our mochi test yielded strong results, with very little cracking and a score of 4.5. But all the natural moisturizers also meant it was super sticky; in fact, it was the worst we tried. It's a shame that there couldn't be more of a balance.


Magicnumber For Fam is a fragrance-free body milk that comes in a large bottle. It has ceramides and vegetable oil and the moisturizing is moderate. Kumano Yushi offers Hatomugi Lightening Body Milk. Hatomugi, or Job's Tears, is used for moisturizing, and we found it to be a bit higher than average, but not enough for those with dry skin.


Bioreu Deep Moisturizing Milk from Kao wasn't particularly deeply moisturizing but just average on that front. The stickiness was too much, with nine beads remaining adhered. It spreads easily, though.

These Would be Better for Emergencies

These Would be Better for Emergencies

Rezare Body Milk from Hakugen Earth has amino acids and hyaluronic acid, supposedly to moisturize. And yet, there were so many cracks in our mochi that its surface was about to come off. It wasn't too sticky, but we can't see a reason to use it in large amounts if it doesn't provide enough hydration.

These Would be Better for Emergencies

Nivea Marshmallow Care has jojoba and almond oil, but our mochi came out of the test slightly cracked. It also is really sticky (we scored it 1.0.) If you need something temporary to put on your skin, though, this might tide you over until you can find something more moisturizing.


Rohto's Care Cera AP Face & Body Milk has ceramides, as you might have guessed. It also has just above average moisturizing (not enough for those with dry skin) and an extremely sticky finish. It is fragrance-free, though.


I-ne Botanist Botanical Body Milk leaves you with a very sticky feeling and wasn't very moisturizing at all. Our mochi had many deep cracks, 10 beads stuck, and it ended up as our lowest-ranked product. If you choose this one, it'd be better used for summer emergencies.

How We Tested the Japanese Body Milks

How We Tested the Japanese Body Milks

We put each product through two tests to check for the following:


  1. Moisturizing power
  2. Non-stickiness

Then we gave them a score from 0.5 to 5 and ranked them.

Test ① Moisturizing Ability

Test ① Moisturizing Ability

The most important thing to us was moisturizing. To test that, we applied each body milk to a mochi rice cake and rubbed it in a bit.


After four hours, we checked the mochi to see if they developed cracks or surface peeling, and touched them to evaluate how moist they felt.

Seeking Lots of Moisturizing Ingredients Like Glycerin is Better Than Choosing by Price

Seeking Lots of Moisturizing Ingredients Like Glycerin is Better Than Choosing by Price

The body milks which performed best in our mochi test tended to contain multiple moisturizing ingredients and emollients, such as glycerin, dipropylene glycol, butylene glycol, mineral oil, and petrolatum. We also found that just because a product had a high price didn't mean that it had a lot of moisturizers.


On the contrary, most of the body milks you can easily find at drug stores received near perfect scores for moisturizing power. Few of the more expensive "luxury" brands could say the same.


The only exceptions were ones from RMK and the non-Japanese brands John Masters and Sabon, so if you must have a luxury brand, pick one of those.

Test ② Non-Stickiness

Test ② Non-Stickiness

For this test, we rubbed an exact amount of body milk on one of our testers' hands. We left it on for three minutes.


When the time was up, our tester pressed their hand lightly onto some beads and shook gently. Then we counted how many beads remained stuck.

Moisturizing Power and Non-Stickiness are Trade-Offs

Moisturizing Power and Non-Stickiness are Trade-Offs

Many products were not that sticky, and they ranged from zero to 12 beads that stayed stuck. Ayura, as well as non-Japanese brands Sabon and Dior, fared the best, with one or no beads.


On the other hand, those with great moisturizing power were often also stickier. You may have to accept some greasiness if you want more skin hydration. Precious Garden Body Milk from Kose was a notable exception to the rule, with perfect scores for both non-stickiness and moisturizing.

How to Choose a Japanese Body Milk - Buying Guide

We recommend keeping these four points in mind when you're deciding on a Japanese body oil.

Look for Moisturizers Listed First in the Ingredients

Look for Moisturizers Listed First in the Ingredients

You're using body milk to get soft, moisturized skin, so make sure you get what you expect! Check the label or online description to make sure powerful moisturizers are at the top of the ingredient list, meaning they'll be in the highest proportions. Here are some ingredients to look for.


Ceramides are made from intercellular lipids. They protect the skin and retain water. Amino acids are the main components of NMF (Natural Moisturizing Factor) present naturally in the skin. Examples include serine, alanine, and so on. Sodium lactate and PCA-Na are also part of NMF and moisturize the stratum corneum.

Glycerin is widely used in lotions and creams for its excellent water absorption. Sodium hyaluronate is naturally present in skin and also retains water. Squalane, an oily substance present in sebum, matches the skin well and provides moisture and softening.

Look for Moisturizers Listed First in the Ingredients

You may run into Japanese products that don't list their ingredients. This means they're medicated products that fall under different labeling laws. In that case, or if you can't read Japanese and can't find a translation, please use our evaluations to choose the most moisturizing products!

Look for Sensitive Skin-Friendly Ingredients

Look for Sensitive Skin-Friendly Ingredients

If you have sensitive skin or want to use a product on your face or for a baby, make sure you choose one with gentle ingredients. Look for ones that say "for sensitive skin" or "additive-free" on the package.


We've listed ones that are fragrance-free in our table. You may still have a reaction to certain elements of the formula regardless of the labeling, so even better to check all the ingredients if your skin is very sensitive.

Consider Active Lightening Ingredients

Consider Active Lightening Ingredients

Lightening or whitening doesn't refer to changing your skin tone, but to reducing the appearance of melanin spots or blemishes. Lightening ingredients can also suppress the production of melanin due to UV exposure and prevent the formation of so-called age spots or sunspots.


People with sensitive skin should always do a patch test before applying a whitening product all over. Some ingredients to look for are vitamin C or derivatives like ascorbic acid, chamomile, tranexamic acid, placenta extract, and ellagic acid.

If You Can't Try a Sample, Read Reviews

If You Can't Try a Sample, Read Reviews

How can you judge the scent or texture if you can't try a tester at a store? Check the reviews online. If there are any scents you particularly hate, look for that specifically, or choose fragrance-free body milk.


The finish will vary greatly even among similar body milks. Check our evaluations to decide which one would suit you. If you want to use it for massage or daily self-care, look for one that spreads easily and covers well with only a small amount.

How to Get the Most out of Your Body Milk

How to Get the Most out of Your Body Milk

A great time to use body milk is right after bathing or showering. Your skin tends to dry out after taking a bath, so it's important to replace the moisture immediately.


It's also great to use body milk liberally during dry weather, or on areas that are prone to dryness, like arms and knees. Some products can be used on the face and body, saving time!


We also love to use a lotion first to firm up the skin. Follow that with a slow massage using body milk in a cool room. We all deserve a little relaxing self-care like that sometimes!

Need More Skincare Products for Your Whole Body?

Need More Skincare Products for Your Whole Body?

A lot of us spend time taking care of our faces, but don't neglect the rest of your skin! We have some great suggestions for all kinds of skincare products, for all types of skin.

Summary

We tested products of various types, from those with a refreshing light finish to those with the moisturizing power of a body cream. Look for the one that suits you best, and don't miss out on this versatile skincare item!


Author: Yurie Katafuchi/Translation: Susan Lucier-Ogawa/Photos: Koichi Miura, Ayumu Sasaki, Takahiro Matsumura


Ranking date: 12/27/2019


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