One of the top-most beauty and skincare ingredients

SK-II the brand!

SK-II (read as SK roman number 2) is an extremely popular, ultra luxury skincare company in Japan that creates world-class, breakthrough,  luxury products, and cosmetics that are revered by many around the world!

SK-II products

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Well, can you believe, the signature and patented ingredient used in their skincare products is related to, guess what? Sake!

For all global drinkers, this word might be very familiar.

For the naive, Sake is a naturally fermented rice wine and very popular drink in Japan. Umm….interesting yeah? This national beverage is often served with a special ceremony and in porcelain bottle and cup!

See the below images where sake is brewed in fancy looking containers!

SK-II and sake

SK-II and Sake

So before your appetite for wine takes an upper hand and you move away from this blog, let us go back to skincare!

The hunt for the magic skincare ingredient!

In the 1970s, SK-II scientists started their research (intense quest is the right term) to find an ingredient that was natural and would be ‘the’ beauty and skincare ingredient which they could swear by.

Think of this as a queen ordering ‘Get me that magic ingredient, or surrender your heads to the samurai sword!

So these countrymen….well scientists…started searching the nook and corner of Japan and other countries! They researched every flower, looked at the hottest spring water, went to their neighbors for Chinese herbs and did whatever they could! They were just not getting that one ingredient which could be used as a foundation for all their products.

search for Pitera

That’s when they had a chance encounter with Sake! In particular, the Sake brewers. Many of these Sake brewers were working in these breweries for generations. Many of them were very old and had naturally wrinkled faces. But one thing that struck out and was quite contrasting were their hands! They were so soft and youthful, they could give young girls a run for their money!

sake brewers hands

sake brewers hands

If someone were to see these hands alone, they wouldn’t in their wildest dreams thank, that the owner was so old!

That was a breath-taking sight or rather a ‘Eureka’ moment for the scientists. That amazing sight stayed with them and was etched in their memories.

Bringing skincare from the field to the lab!

Back in their laboratory, they spent days and nights brainstorming, researching and probably having lots of coffee or sake and finally concluded that the Brewers’ hands might be in constant touch with some yeast during the fermentation process. Determined to find that particular yeast strain, they did a painstaking research of over 10 years to get hold of that beast, sorry, yeast. They could finally zero down on that one strain of yeast that held the secret to gorgeous and beautiful skin.

Pitera yeast

This was a birth of a breakthrough and miraculous beauty and skincare revolution that went on to be known as PiteraTM.

What is Pitera?

PiteraTM is a derived from a strictly controlled natural fermentation process. It is a clear liquid which is rich in the following ingredients.

  • Vitamins & Minerals – Essential for skin and skin texture

vitamins and minerals

  • Organic and amino acids – Essential for removing dead skin and making skin bright and translucent while maintaining moisture

Organic and amino acids

  • Saccharides and Proteins – Essential for skin repair, hydration and proteins like Keratin and collagen are used for skin repair and providing elasticity.

Saccharides and Proteins

This incredible combination of ingredients plays an important part in the skin’s natural surface rejuvenation process. PiteraTM is very similar to the skin’s NMF (Natural Moisturizing Factor). NMF helps restore and enhance the skin’s translucency, softness, and smoothness.

So, by combining intense research, science and a lot of passion, SK-II scientists have created a patented ingredient that no other product has! These products were launched since the 1980s and have brought a smile to many faces!

All thanks to the grit of the scientists, sake and of course the underestimated and angry yeast!

Photo courtesy:
Hands closeup – By Evan-Amos – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0,

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