The Korean skincare routine: every skincare enthusiast has subscribed to it, and those who haven’t yet, are a bit obsessed with knowing how it works.
With state-of-the-art technology harnessing traditional rituals – not to mention the mind-blowing effects – it’s easy to see why the eerie but bodacious skincare routine is in vogue. But where do you even start if you want in on the K-magic?
Well, many skincare experts will tell you to follow the famous ten-step routine.
But if you’re like us and constantly hit the snooze until the last minute, this can be a tad bit intense.
In any case, do you really need to follow an excessive ten-plus-step ritual to achieve the perfect glow? The answer is no.
In fact, several K-beauty gurus say that streamlining your routine can be helpful. While the stepwise, mix-and-match approach can help you curate the ‘ideal-for-you’ skincare routine, you can also overdo it and transform your skin into a real kvetch (blotched, itchy, and irrationally sensitive.
So, to help navigate the K-confusion, here’s a simple no B.S., highly-recommended, K-beauty routine.
Double cleansing is indispensable in the Korean skincare routine.
It allows you to get rid of dirt, grime, makeup, and excess oils. However, this step requires two essential camps – an oil-based cleanser and a water-based one.
The oil-based cleanser draws out the dirt and grime, leaving your skin clear and radiant. On the other hand, a water-based cleanser makes sure that your skin is spotless before moving on to the next step.
Quick Tip: Remember to check the PH of the water-based cleaner to ensure it doesn’t irritate your skin – that’s the opposite of what you’re trying to accomplish with this skincare ritual.
Skip or adjust this step if…
Your skin reacts harshly to oils ( oil-based cleanser) or if you have super-dry skin (water-based cleanser).
Toning can be a contentious step in the skincare universe, but it’s a vital step in any K-beauty routine.
A toner typically preps your skin for the next steps, helps balance your skin’s PH, and allows every subsequent product to be absorbed perfectly into the skin.
Bonus Tip: If you’re looking to invest in Asian brands, most use the word ‘lotion’ to refer to what many Western beauty brands term as ‘toners.’ So, don’t be alarmed or confused!
Skip this step if…
Your budget doesn’t have room for a rather expensive product, or you’re on a tight schedule.
Serums and ampoules have been a crucial part of the Korean skincare routine for what feels like centuries.
The emollient gel-like products are the K-beauty secret sauce that’ll put you on the path to achieving the glassy skin you seek. Serum, for instance, helps treat issues like wrinkles, fine lines, dark spots, and dullness.
On the other hand, Ampoules feature a higher number of active compounds that target specific skincare issues.
They’re primarily used as a booster when your skin desperately needs the extra nudge.
You used an exfoliating toner. You want to subscribe to a radiance-boosting, hydrating serum and steer clear of additional chemical exfoliants.
Chances are, you already subscribe to this step in your morning and even nighttime skincare routine – so you don’t need to add anything extra.
The perfect moisturizer forms a barrier to safeguard, lock in all the dewy goodness, and leave your skin feeling plump and plush.
So, if you have acne-prone/oily skin, invest in a light, lotion-based moisturizer. If you have normal to dry skin, use a cream-based moisturizer to avoid irritation.
Please, never, ever skip the moisturizer. It’s like SPF. Any skincare routine, K-beauty or otherwise, isn’t complete without one – so don’t skip it!
Guard Your Glow
SPF is any skincare routine’s gospel – you can’t afford to skip it. In fact, there’s no point in investing in cleansers, toners, or serums if you’re not adequately protecting your skin from UV rays. Blame it on global warming (like we do everything else).
Applying an SPF 35 and above also helps prevent breakouts, dark spots, fine lines, and hyperpigmentation. So, even though the temperatures are at -89.2°C, make sure you slather that sunscreen.
The moon is up, and you’re going to bed.
Now that you’re equipped with the most straightforward K-beauty routine make sure you follow it, and there’s no way on earth you won’t get the glow you seek.