Our Korean Beauty 10-Step Routine
We have provided steps for your K-Beauty routine, but always check your product's directions for exact instructions! Your skin is unique, and it is important to find what exactly your skin needs, so have fun with it and try something new everyday!
If you are new to the K-Beauty skin care routine, you can easily start with just three steps! Use a water-based cleanser as your cleansing step, a toner as your treatment step, and a moisturizer (emulsion, lotion, or cream) for your final step.
We have also provided a few pictures of notable examples found in our store. Check them out!
1. Makeup Remover & Oil Based Cleanser
SUGGESTED APPLICATION: Apply a generous amount (~1 pump or more) to the hands and smooth the oil over the face to remove makeup.
Every K-Beauty fan’s first step in their facial care routine is a makeup remover & oil based cleanser. The start of a good skin care regimen begins with cleansing all oil impurities on the skin. Rub your oil based cleanser over your face and neck followed by a splash of warm water to emulsify and activate the cleanser before washing. Starting your skin care routine with an oil-based cleanser will effectively remove the makeup, oil, and dirt accumulated throughout the day.
EXAMPLE: Etude House Mild Cleansing Oil is an example of a water-friendly oil cleanser, containing green tea seed extract and soothing chamomile extract.
2. Water Based Cleanser
SUGGESTED APPLICATION: Squeeze and lather an inch sized amount into the hands and apply to the face to remove excess dirt and oil.
Next is a water based cleanser. These cleansers are your typical foaming cleansers and beauty waters. This essential step removes oil on the skin from the first cleanser and ionic impurities on the skin.
EXAMPLE: MISSHA Super Aqua Oxygen Micro Deep Visible Cleanser is a perfect example of a strong foaming cleanser found at our store. After using this product your face will feel especially cleansed of impure oils.
SUGGESTED APPLICATION: Squeeze an inch sized amount onto the hands and scrub the face in a circular motion (only to be used twice a week).
Exfoliants remove dead skin cells and pesky impurities that potentially block pores. They also soften and polish the skin to give you a smooth and refreshing look, keeping you feeling fresh and rejuvenated. Scrubs and peels are examples of exfoliants. This step should only be used twice a week as it can stretch pores and strip the skin if overindulged.
EXAMPLE: Etude House Baking Powder Crunch Pore Scrub is a fun way to keep up with your exfoliation step for the week. These portioned packs make it easy to use the appropriate amount of exfoliation controlled.
SUGGESTED APPLICATION: Apply a palm sized amount on hands and pat lightly over the face and neck area.
After thoroughly cleansing the face, the next step in the routine is to apply a toner. Toners prep the skin by balancing the skin’s pH levels and providing necessary hydration for the following steps. This preparation step is vital to getting the most out of your skin care routine. Using toners will increase the effectiveness of your favorite essence, serums, or sheet mask!
EXAMPLE: MISSHA Time Revolution White Cure Blanc Tone-Up Toner is a toner that is not only great at hydrating and prepping your skin for your essence step but also especially good for evening dark skin tone.
SUGGESTED APPLICATION: Apply a palm sized amount on the hand and pat lightly over the face and neck area.
An essence is a hybrid product combining properties of both toners and serums. This skin care product is designed to treat specific skin care issues like a serum and soften the skin similar to a toner. Essences are crucial to the K-beauty regimen and are considered the main step in making a difference in your skin. All the previous steps are in preparation for the ingredients found in essences.
EXAMPLE: MISSHA Time Revolution The First Treatment Essence is a fine example of a high-quality, well-known essence that is overall great for treating a variety of skin issues.
SUGGESTED APPLICATION: Use directed amount and lightly pat over the face and neck area.
This is an optional everyday treatment step in the K-beauty routine. This step is utilized to provide the necessary nutrients to target specific skin issues. Serums are more concentrated than essences and target a certain skin issue, such as enlarged pores, acne, acne scarring, dull or uneven complexion, or wrinkled skin.
EXAMPLE: MISSHA Time Revolution Night Repair Science Activator Borabit Ampoule is a nighttime skin care ampoule that helps restore elasticity to your skin to remove wrinkles as well as rejuvenate your skin with high-quality moisturizing.
7. Sheet Mask
SUGGESTED APPLICATION: Place over the face for the designated amount of time.
The sheet mask step is a rejuvenating, enjoyable, and fun step in the k-beauty routine. Allowing yourself 10-20 minutes to soak in the essences, serums contained in sheet masks will make a difference in your day. Using masks two to three times every week maximizes treatment and gives faster results. Sheet masks target various skin issues similar to serums.The sheet mask step is a rejuvinating, enjoyable, and fun step in the k-beauty routine. Allowing yourself 10-20 minutes to soak in the essences, serums contained in sheet masks will make a difference in your day. Using masks two to three times every week maximizes treatment and gives faster results. Sheet masks target various skin issues similar to serums.
EXAMPLE: Leaders Vita Brightening Renewal Sheet Mask is a great example of a serum mask that specifically treats uneven and dull skin tone. Vitamin C, the main constituent of this mask, has been continually raved about for its excellent property of brightening troubling dark areas.
8. Eye Cream
SUGGESTED APPLICATION: Apply a pea sized amount to the eye area.
Skin around the eye is more sensitive than the rest of the facial area, and extra care is needed to keep your eye areas looking fresh. Eye creams give extra hydration needed to protect skin from discoloration and wrinkles. There are also eye creams that contain firming ingredients to get reduce swelling around the eyes to help remove puffy eyes.
EXAMPLE: MISSHA Time Revolution Vitality Eye Cream is a quintessential example of an eye cream. It is specifically geared towards firming and brightening dark circles around the eye area.
9. Emulsion, Lotion, or/and Cream
SUGGESTED APPLICATION: Apply a generous amount on the hands and smooth over the face and pat lightly.
K-beauty fans value that dewy look on their skin. Moisturizers help protect against dryness and help retain nutrients and hydration gained from previous skin treatment steps. There are many different kinds of moisturizers, which can be emulsions, lotions, gels, and creams. You can choose from many different moisturizers to target a specific skin issue. For example, you are looking for a light amount of moisturizing effect during the summer to prevent clogging pores, just apply one light emulsion for this step. The same concept works with applying multiple moisturizers, an emulsion and cream, during the winter to combat dryness!
Etude House Moistfull Collagen Emulsion and Honey Cera are two great moisturizers found at our store.
The Honey Cera line is geared towards sensitive skin, with its ceramide consituents, while also providing deep moisturizing content.
The Moistfull Collage line is geared towards hydration and firming for normal/oily skin type. This is perfect for summer time!
SUGGESTED APPLICATION: Apply a generous amount on the hands and smooth into the face.
This is the final step in the routine that is only applied during morning skin routines. Sunscreens protect the skin from powerful UV rays, which can be very harmful to the skin in prolonged exposure. This step helps keep moisture in the skin and is the best way to prevent skin aging. Korean skin care sunscreens differ from most sunscreens, because they not only provide UV protection but also provide extra nutrients for the skin.
EXAMPLE: Etude House Sunprise LeSports Waterproof Suncreen is a perfect example of how sunscreens should not only have to block UV radiation but also nourish the skin. The addition of this final step to your skin care regime will aid in keeping in all the nutrients gained from your skin care products for the rest of the day.