The Beauty Insider: the 10-step Korean beauty skincare regime
THE BEAUTY INSIDER:
THE 10-STEP KOREAN BEAUTY SKINCARE REGIME
Ever wondered how our Korean counterparts get their flawless, dewy complexions? Well, it's all down to an extensive 10-step skincare regime. Sounds daunting? Stick with us - because fresh from her trip to Seoul, Emily Saunders, one of our beauty buyers, is here to break each step down, allowing you to customise it to meet your specific skincare needs.
Emily Saunders, one of our beauty buyers, talks us through the 10-step Korean skincare regime, so you can customise it to meet your specific needs.
Cleansing is at the heart of the Korean skincare routine - which is why it twice features in the 10-step routine. The first half of the famous 'double cleanse' method involves drawing out sebum and bacteria using a gentle oil cleanser and lukewarm water. We love Skin79's Cleanest Coconut Cleansing Oil, which magically melts away any impurities, leaving behind soft, clean and deeply hydrated skin.
2. And then cleanse again
The second cleanse ensures every last lingering scrap of dirt, oil and make-up is removed from the skin, leaving it perfectly clean and prepped for the steps that follow. This green tea-infused fresh foam wash from Neogen is gentle enough to whisk away any last traces of dirt without drying out the skin, leaving your complexion as energised as a matcha latte.
In order for skincare ingredients to work efficiently, it's important to ensure they're effectively absorbed deep into the skin, so a good facial exfoliator is an essential part of the regime. Skinmiso's Real Clean Peeling Gel (100 per cent natural) is brilliant for balancing dry and sensitive - or sensitised - skin that needs a little extra TLC. For the best results, apply to dry skin, leave on for one minute and then remove by gently massaging your face.
4. Tighten up with toner
Not only does a toner calm and restore your pH balance, but it also preps your skin to better absorb what comes next. Try Skinmiso's I'm A.Helper Toner, which adds a fine layer of moisture to the skin while refreshing, soothing and brightening. It's a great product for any skin type but works wonders on complexions prone to break-outs.
5. Essence is essential
Often considered the most important step by Korean women (aside from double cleansing, of course), an essence is a quick and easy way to refresh and hydrate your skin. Supercharged with active ingredients that work hard to improve skin quality, an essence should be patted all over the face, post cleanse. We love Blithe's Vital Treatment Pulp Essence. It melts into the skin to hydrate and brighten from within, thanks to a cocktail of eight different peptide and vitamin-rich bean extracts.
6. Massage in the moisturiser
Once you've finished with the essence, the next step is to moisturise, which adds even more hydration while also providing the perfect base for make-up. Try Re:p's Nutrinature All-In-One Multitem - not only does it improve the skin's elasticity, but it also promotes a more even tone and texture. Massage in with upward motions, allowing enough time for it to really sink in.
7. Use a sheet mask
Perhaps one of the most popular beauty trends to emerge from Korea, sheet masks are an effective (and inexpensive) way to treat your skin. You'll never be short of options - regardless of skin type or concern - and results are instant. The Oozoo’s Face-In-Shot Mask might look a little intimidating at first glance, but the syringe (which holds the serum) simply preserves the freshness of the active ingredients before you inject them into the mask.
8. Apply an eye cream
Since prevention is better than cure, an eye cream is a must to keep fine lines, puffiness and dark circles at bay. Granted, Tony Moly's Ferment Snail Eye Cream might sound unusual, but snail mucus just so happens to be rich in powerful ingredients like hyaluronic acid, peptides and zinc that work wonders on fine lines and pigmentation. The trick is not to tug or pull the skin around the eye when applying; instead liberally tap it around the entire eye.
9. Prep with a primer
Another key element of Korean skincare, a primer minimises pores but also helps to smooth the skin, extending the wear of your foundation. Skin79's Pore Raxel Blur Primer is one of our favourites (no mean feat). Why? Because it genuinely minimises the look of pores and effectively blurs imperfections, creating the perfect canvas for make-up to glide on evenly.
10. Use a cushion compact
First came BB cream, then CC cream (a lightweight formula that is less cakey on the skin than a regular foundation), and then came the cushion compact. While cushion compacts offer the same benefits as BBs and CCs, the sponge-like applicator helps to infuse oxygen and moisture into the foundation, creating a bright, dewy glow. We love this Missha Tension Pact, which boasts a nifty net filter to ensure you get the perfect amount of product per application. Genius.