Time needed: 15 minutes.
Korean skincare secrets has all of the essential information you need to know about Korean skincare! If you are interested in trying out this trending skincare routine, then read on. You will learn what Korean skincare is, why it is so popular, and some Korean skin care tips that you can use immediately!
Every now and then I notice a new trend or secret in Korean skincare that eventually makes a splash over here in the West. I don’t think anyone is too surprised by this. Koreans are known for being innovators in beauty products (as are Asians in general) and some of their secrets have certainly made their way across the globe by now.
Do you want to learn how to get softer smoother glowing skin without having to spend thousands of dollars? Do you wish you could have that kind of skin just like the Korean celebrities? I know I used to. We all want perfect skin. That’s why it’s not a surprise that Koreans spend billions in their skincare and makeup industry. With the help of some Korean friends, I have carefully tested some Korean beauty products. I’m going to share my secret Korean beauty tips with you in this article .
Cleansing sounds like such a small part of Korean skincare, but in this step I am going to tell you just why it’s so important. It’s an easy part to miss, but if you don’t cleanse properly, it can leave your skin feeling clogged and unclean and can cause spots.
Cleansing is the most basic and important part of any skincare routine, so it’s essential that you do it right. And I don’t mean ‘right’ in that ‘wash your face twice a day or else you’ll die’ kind of way. I mean ‘right’ in the ‘if you do this wrong, you’re going to end up with major breakouts, premature aging, and the whole nine yards’ kind of way. But don’t despair, I’m here to show you how to get it right.
Like most women, I took my skin for granted. After washing my face and body (sometimes with bar soap or body wash), I dabbed on some moisturizer and called it a day. Then one of my Korean friends starting telling me about her facial regimen. She completed a 10-step skincare routine every single night (and not just when she was getting ready for work or a big date). I thought this was overkill, even for superstitious Koreans, but she insisted that her regimen not only helped keep her skin clean and clear, but also helped reduce the appearance of her enlarged pores.
To start your journey into the world of Korean skincare secrets, you have to learn the basics. Just like learning your ABCs makes you a better student, washing your face is the first step to beautiful skin.
If there was one skincare product that I couldn’t live without, it would be cleansing wipes. I love how gentle and effective they are at removing makeup and impurities whilst giving my skin a boost of hydration.
Before cleansing your skin, you need to wash your hands first until they are completely dry. This is because while your hands are wet on the outside, they can cause bacteria and germs to penetrate through your pores. Therefore, it is important to thoroughly cleanse your face first.
Most prefer to start off with a gentle, oil-based cleanser to remove their makeup. Oily skin types should opt for a foaming cleanser or gel-based cleansers to help remove oil while also tightening pores. Dry skin types can use foaming or gel-based cleansers to do as well.
Toner is probably the second most important step in Korean skincare routine after cleansing . With your cleanser, you’re removing all of the dirt and residue on your face. It’s critical to follow that by removing any leftover residue so extra steps are required!
Makeup off, double cleanse done, and toner next in the skincare routine. It’s the second step of the Korean skincare routine order, but there are actually four types of toners in Korean skincare — all with different purposes.
If you have received a drastic transformation from using Korean skincare products, the most likely culprit is what’s second on your routine: toner. The right toners can hydrate and soothe your skin, while also providing ample moisturizing power for other products to fully sink in.
Toner is an important step to your skincare routine and should not be skipped. Toner is an alcohol-based liquid that balances out the pH of your skin, helping to get rid of any residue left behind by cleansing and also helps with cell renewal. It’s usually used right after cleansing in a double cleanse, but can also be used as a mid-day pick me up if you have oily or acne skin.
As mentioned above, toner is the pre-treatment of the skin to allow for better absorption of skincare products. The main function of a toner is to clean any leftover impurities from your pores before applying active ingredients such as moisturizers. Toners usually have a pH balance that ranges from 4 to 5.5. The reason for this is because it will help neutralize your skin’s natural acidic levels, as well as create acidity that can help with in-depth skin treatment in the next steps of your Korean skincare routine.
Toner is one of the most important parts of a Korean skincare routine. It helps reduce the appearance of large pores, tighten and firm your skin, lifts off any dead skin cells that have built up during your cleansing process as well as lays the foundation for applying your next skincare product.
Now that you’ve properly cleaned your face, it’s time to get down to the nitty gritty. The third step in Korean skincare is called treatment . This is where products come in handy! Let’s take a look at what these treatments could be, shall we?
So you have cleansed your skin and toned it up, what next? Now we move onto the stage of treatment. It is where you get to pamper yourself with products to treat any problem your skin might be suffering from. Be it dehydration, acne scars, fine lines or wrinkles, dryness or anything else, you need the best Korean skincare treatments at your fingertips. Just remember that no matter what product you buy, it will not work until it is combined with an effective skincare routine.
If you’ve made it this far in your routine, congratulations! You’re a lot closer to your flawless skin than you were before you started. This is the step where you will intensify your treatment as well as deal with any spots that need further attention.
Once your pores are nice and clean from the double cleanse, it’s time to start applying treatment products. The third step of your Korean skincare routine is what will treat any issues your skin may be having – whether it’s acne, dry patches, or dullness.
When you’ve used the first two steps of the Korean skincare routine a few times, your skin will have adjusted to the new treatment and ingredients. At this point, it’s time for the third step; treatment, in which you get to “play” and try out different products and techniques. Treatment creates different looks depending on what kind of skin you have and what products you use.
- MOISTURE & PROTECT
Your skin is fresh, clean and oh so soft after the Korean skin care routine steps of wash, exfoliate and tone. But your regimen isn’t done yet. It also includes moisturizing and protecting your skin. How you moisturize and protect your skin depends on your skin type, but this post will give some recommendations from my personal experience and the great resources I have read about Korean skincare secrets.
Now that you’ve cleaned, exfoliated and toned, it is time for the most important step – the one that ensures your skin becomes healthy and keeps it that way. Moisturizing is as important to your skin as moisturizing is to your hair. It’s what keeps your skin supple and prevents premature aging.
In the grand scheme of skincare steps, moisture comes before protection. That’s because your skin barrier does its best work when it’s tightly locked in place to keep all the good stuff in and the bad stuff out. Without this crucial moisture barrier, it’s like a castle without walls—though your natural lipid layer is invisible, all the skin layers above depend on it to do its job.
The right moisturizer can actually make your skin look brighter and smoother, as well as helping further goals like healing acne breakouts or reducing an uneven skin tone. I personally had not used a moisturizer since I was 12 until I realized how much better my skin looked when I took the time to find the right one for my skin.
There is a lot more to skincare than cleansing and exfoliating. One of the most important steps to having healthy skin is moisture and it’s one that’s often overlooked. If you thought moisturizers were only for dry skin types you’re in for a surprise because everyone can benefit from some hydration.
To get the best results from your skincare routine, you should be sure to moisturize and protect your skin. You can use either a cream or lotion depending on your personal preferences and skin type.
Now that you have your triple wash and moisturizer, it is time to introduce retinol to your nighttime routine. Retinol products can be tricky because too much retinol will make your skin flake and peel. However, this excess skin will shed and leave behind new, healthy skin in its place. It usually takes a few weeks for people to adjust to the strength of a retinoid, but once they do their skin will look firmer and clearer within a month. Do not go for a really strong retinol product if you are new to anti-aging as you may end up doing more harm than good!
Retinol (vitamin A) is a powerhouse in the skincare world, and Koreans are known to be heavy retinol users. But do you know why it works? Or what the optimal dosage is? And how to care for your skin so that it works best, while minimizing harmful side effects? We will touch on some of the reasons why retinol is great for your skin, as well as key ways you can incorporate it into your routine.
Retinol is a pure form of Vitamin A that helps to improve the quality of your skin. It’s also used as an anti-aging ingredient in anti-wrinkle products. However, retinol isn’t for everyone due to its sensitivity, so you should talk to your doctor before starting this or any skincare product.
This is the fifth product in my series of Korean skincare secrets, and it’s all about retinol! I have been using retinol products lately, so I want to share what they are and why I use them. Retinol is a derivative of vitamin A that comes from animals; it has been used as a topical treatment for people with acne for many years (and has been shown to be effective!).
After cleansing and exfoliating, it’s time to add an extra layer of protection for your skin. I’m talking about adding a retinol or prescription retinoid cream (such as Differin) to your routine.
- NIGHT TIME TREATMENT
This is the next step in your Korean skincare routine! Night time treatments, aka sleeping packs, are designed to boost the effects of your daytime treatments by adding another layer of skincare. The night time treatment serves as a final non-watery step before you go to sleep. This is your opportunity to infuse moisture into your skin.
We’ve been using toners, serums and moisturizers during the day to get rid of skin problems and give our skin an overall glow. Now it’s time for another more powerful night treatment that will provide intensive moisture and nutrition to your skin.
As you know, sleeping hours are when your body and skin repair itself. When you sleep, your skin delivers moisture that repairs the skin from the damages of the sun, pollution, and stress to reveal a fair complexion and smooth radiance. While sleeping, our bodies naturally eliminate toxins so it is best for skin to avoid any restrictions or contamination during sleep.
This is where you’re going to put your skin through all the work. As you go to bed, your skin is healing from the damage caused by the sun and whatever other factors may have wrecked your skin that day. Your night time routine is all about giving it what it needs to recover from such harsh elements.
- NIGHT TIME MOISTURE COCKTAIL
Now that you’ve finished the 6 steps of your morning skincare, it’s time for the nighttime moisture cocktail! Take an eye dropper and slowly add drops of Love Your Eyes oil. When I purchased mine, the label said to use 3 drops, but if that feels a little too rich for you, 2 or 1 is okay too.
Now that you’ve gotten all the layers of your morning and evening routines done, it’s time to start your nighttime skincare routine. Do you remember when I said don’t get too comfortable without a sheet mask? Well, now it’s time to finish things up with some more moisture!
Now that we’ve lifted the dirt, blotted away some of the oil, tightened pores with toner, and nourished skin with serums and essences… it’s nighttime baby! It is at this time you will be preparing your moisture cocktail. Yes, folks, this is the last step in your skincare regimen; the final stage prior to slathering on your sleeping pack. The moisture cocktail is quite a staple in Korean skincare, and for good reason: it works!
This is my final step in my Korean skincare routine. I don’t use an ampoule at night though, but instead use a serum rich cream such as this one that contains Centella Asiatica extract and willow bark extract. The reason why I like to skip the ampoule step at night is that it can be too rich and too much for your skin. I don’t want to feel greasy before bedtime, so I opt for a rich hydrating serum instead which still provides the benefits of an ampoule without feeling too heavy.
Although the morning routine is important and you should always start it off with a gentle hydrator, I have found that the secret to a healthy glow and plumped up lips and cheeks comes from the night time moisture cocktail! So pull out your trusty syringe (or pharmacy bottle of EGF) and call it a day. I admit a lot of nights I don’t bother with both steps (I know that’s blasphemy). However facial oils tend to break me out so I leave that till morning when my face is more supple.
As soon as your other layers are absorbed, this is your last step in the night. If you’re using a sleeping pack, go ahead and apply it now!