Finding a single Korean woman without flawless, dewy and youthful skin can be quite a struggle, and as we all know, this is a result of their complex, laborious, regimented daily skincare routines, right?
Wrong. There’s no such thing.
Contrary to popular belief (who’s been spreading these lies, anyway?), there is no such thing as a codified “10-step Korean skincare regime” that these dewy-skinned ladies follow. Instead, the secret to their gorgeous glow is a proactive approach to skincare from a young age – prevention is always better than cure – and a tailored daily skincare routine, specific to their individual skin concerns and goals.
So ladies, you can all breathe a big sigh of relief as dewy, youthful skin is finally within reach. By tailoring your skincare routine to your unique needs and carefully layering your chosen hero products onto your skin, you too can achieve the glow you’ve always wanted.
I know what you’re thinking…we may have cleared-up the confusion around the non-existent “10-step Korean skincare regime” but what about all the complicated products? I mean, what on Earth is an ampoule anyway?
Don’t fret; we’re here to help. Let us guide you through the “mystical” world of Korean skincare products, and help you feel more confident to take your first steps towards beautiful skin….
1) Prep time
A wise man once said “if you fail to prepare, then be prepared to fail” (or something to that effect), and we completely agree. If you don’t spend the necessary time cleansing, exfoliating and toning your skin, then you won’t be able to derive the maximum benefits from all the nutrient-packed products that follow.
Cleanse: We are big proponents of double cleansing. While it may sound like a lot of hassle (surely a handy facewipe will do!?), from our experience it’s definitely worth the effort. We recommend starting with an oil cleanser to draw out all the excess sebum and dirt that has built up on your skin over the course of the day, then follow-up with a gentle and refreshing non-drying foam cleanser to eliminate any excess oil left on the skin. Try the Klairs Gentle Black Deep Cleansing Oil, followed by their Rich Moist Foaming Cleanser for squeaky-clean skin.
Exfoliate: This is an important step, no matter what your skin type. Exfoliating helps remove dead skin cells and unclog pores, which are common ailments in dry and oily skin types respectively. We recommend exfoliating your face and neck with one of our gentle Konjac sponges a few times a week. You can concentrate more on the t-zone and other areas of the face where blackheads are more common. But, note that less is more when it comes to exfoliation as excessive rubbing and scrubbing can lead to irritation and dryness of the skin.
Tone: Like us, you’ve probably grown-up using Western-style toners, which are typically formulated with harsher chemicals. Asian toners on the other hand are more refreshing, hydrating and they contain plenty of hero ingredients. For oily skin, try the Tea Tree 70 Mist Toner by LJH; alternatively those with normal/combination or sensitive skin might enjoy the Klairs Supple Preparation Facial Toner.
2) Hydrate, nourish and treat
Unless you’re a total skincare rookie, the preceding steps should all hopefully sound familiar to you. Now lets move on to the part where many women become confused/overwhelmed/exasperated (delete as appropriate) – hydration and nourishment. This is where we introduce you to all the interesting and wonderful East Asian concoctions that will help transform your skin.
Essences, ampoules and serums are all essentially hydrating, highly-enriched liquid concentrates that influence the skin at a cellular level and boost skin rejuvenation. They are lighter than a moisturiser but thicker than a toner.
We recommend following your toner with a hydrating essence, like the Tea Tree 90 Essence by LJH or the Luminant Plus Whitening Essence by Goodal, that brightens while deeply hydrating your skin. Follow with an ampoule or serum to target specific skin concerns. Ampoules/serums are highly concentrated with active ingredients that target specific skincare goals, such as brightening, anti-aging and hydration, and results can normally be seen in a short period of time. Mizon’s Snail Repair Intensive Ampoule is packed full of snail mucin which promotes cell regeneration and is perfect for improving overall skin tone.
Don’t forget to give your skin a well-deserved treat once or twice a week, by applying a hydrating sheet mask. Our all time favourite is the LJH Vital Firming Hydrogel Mask. This wonderful gel-like mask does a great job at helping the skin soak up all the nutrients contained within while preventing any evaporation.
3) From am to pm
Finish up by locking-in all the good stuff from your essences and serums with a suitable moisturiser. In the morning, apply your trusty eye cream along with a lightweight moisturiser, such as Goodal’s Silky Plus Soothing Gel Cream which is gel-like and non sticky, followed by an SPF like the LJH UV True Sunscreen, to protect you from sun damage.
In the evening, we recommend a richer formula to ensure that your skin is well moisturised when you wake up the next day. A sleeping pack, such as the Goodal Anti-Wrinkle Sleep Cream Pack is perfect for instantly nourishing dry and aging skin.
As a rule of thumb, always start from the lightest liquid to the thickest. This ensures optimum absorption. Et voila, your skincare routine is complete! See, it wasn’t that complicated after all, was it? Share your skincare routine tips and tricks below!