I have tried many different skincare routines for my face and finally come across something optimal for my combination skin. For a year now I have been following the “10 Step Korean Skincare Routine” and my face is thanking me. The k-beauty routine is all about “layering” products. In contrast to the western routines, where you usually just splash in the face with a thick cream and after 2 minutes you’re done, you need a little longer in the bathroom. In my opinion, a few minutes more are worth it and to be honest, nothing can finally come from nothing. However, for all the lazier ones, there are also many 2-in-1 products (e.g. mask and peeling in one or day cream with sun protection) and some steps are not for daily use. If you have good genes and a little patience, you can (seemingly) get Glass Skin and that’s probably what everyone is after.
Rule number one, which has nothing directly to do with the care of your skin but is still very important: drink enough water. About two years ago, I published a blog post about it, if you have not seen it yet, feel free to do so.
Step 1: Cleansing
Every skincare routine starts with getting rid of the dirt on your skin. In the morning I only wash my face with water, but in the evening I do the double-cleansing method. That means I wash the make-up and the dirt from the day first with an oil cleaner and then with a gel cleanser off. So everything comes away. I have been using two Cleanser from Dermalogica (PR Sample) for almost two years now and I am very satisfied with them.
Tip for traveling: When I travel, I usually take make-up removing pads with me. I’m currently using the Kale Fix Makeup Removing Pads from Nip + Fab, but I’ve heard that the Glycolic Fix Pads, also from Nip + Fab, should be even better. You’ll notice it anyway, but I’m quite a fan of the brand. A few months ago I discovered it while shopping and now I can not get away from it.
Step 2: Peeling
Our skin renews itself every day and leaves small scales behind. Twice a week I do a facial peel to remove the dead cells. I switch between homemade scrubs and bought ones. When I make the scrub myself, I usually use a mixture of oatmeal and honey. After the peeling, you have skin, like a baby. When purchased, I honestly have no favorites I like to try out different products. The ones I am currently using and with which I am quite satisfied are Dermalogica (PR Sample) and Klapp.
Step 3: Toner
A toner, tonic, face mist, or whatever you want to call it, is the next step. This neutralizes the PH value of the skin and makes it more receptive to the upcoming products. I’m using Pixi‘s Rose Tonic, which not only soothes the skin very well but also smells good. It is suitable for all skin types, even sensitive skin. The rose tonic moisturizes and contains no alcohol.
Step 4: Essence
In addition to the previous points, this is probably one of the most important. The Essence is a mixture of serum and toner, so very light but rich in nutrients for the skin.
In Germany, I also found some Essences but the market for this product is still very limited. That’s why I ordered one directly from Asia, the same goes for the emulsion and ampoule. Anyway, I’ve been using Benton‘s Snail Bee High Content Essence for several months now. It is cooling and very rich in nutrients. A true miracle Essence, as it is called in the net. This product is suitable for all skin types but especially good for sensitive skin. Its ingredients include aloe vera and mallow roots.
Step 5: Emulsion
Depending on the skin type, this step can be left out. However, as my combination skin tends to be drier, I also make some emulsion on it. I’m currently using the Rice & Ceramide emulsion from The Face Shop. Also, this product donates a lot of moisture and I ordered directly from Korea.
Step 6: Serum, Ampoule, Booster
Depending on the skin type, this step can also be left out of the skincare routine. However, if you do not have very oily skin, I would recommend this step.
In the morning I use a light serum, such as the Pure Lift Serum from La Radiance and in the evening something thicker, like the Snail Intensive Repair Ampoule by Mizon or the Dragons Blood Fix Serum by Nip + Fab. I found the serum in Germany at TK Maxx and ordered the ampoule from Mizon from Korea. As far as I know, the brand is also available in Germany but the price difference is quite big. I took the ampoule from Mizon to Switzerland and forgot it the last time, so you do not see a picture of it. At the Schön für mich event I got some Lavera ampoules, cures I already had a pack and I have to say that I like it.
If I have pimples, I use a booster above the serum or the ampoule. I’ve been taking one from the Dermalogica (PR Sample) Clear Start line for almost a year now and I can tell you, that this booster has it all. I do not remember what it was like when I did not have it yet.
Step 7: Sheet Masks
Personally, if I have enough time, I put on a mask about twice a week. However, this is up to you. I have also seen challenges on Youtube where you take one every day.
At the moment I’m a big fan of gel masks, after that, your face is glowing. Otherwise, I buy myself some face masks at TK Maxx. I just put a lot of emphasis on the ingredients of the face mask otherwise the brand is not so important to me. If I want to treat myself, I buy some of Nip + Fab or Tony Moly, which are a bit more expensive but next to the Neutrogena gel masks my favorite!
On a stressful week with little time, I use the Teen Skin Fix 2 in 1 Scrub and Mask Pore Blaster (old moth, what a long name) from Nip + Fab. This is a mask, which you run down through peeling. So you can kill two birds with one stone. 10 steps can well be pushed down to 3-4 with such products.
Rossmann for example has also had a Korean line for a few months. I love that more and more stores in Germany have k beauty products on their shelves.
Step 8: Eye Creme
Since eye creams are more likely to be anti-aging products and should not be used as a young person, I only very rarely take eye creams if, for example, I have dark circles to the bottom. My current eye cream is from Lancaster, it was in a beauty box – I would not buy it again, because the price is very proud of what it offers in my opinion.
Since eye creams are more likely to be anti-aging products and should not be used as a young person, I only very rarely take eye creams if, for example, I have dark circles to the bottom. I have two eye creams and always switch back and forth. One is from Spilanthox Therapy and the other from Lancaster, they were both in a beauty box – I would not buy them again since they’re pretty expensive and I think you can get the same result with cheaper products.
Step 9: Moisturizer
You’re thinking: Whaaat? Another layer? Yes, exactly one more layer. The moisturizer completes the whole skincare routine. If you use one with SPF during the day you can skip the next and last step. I must also say that I do not have a “permanent” day or night cream. I swish the brands pretty often, I only take a look that sun protection is already in it.
You’re thinking: Whaaat? Another layer? Yes, exactly one more layer. The moisturizer completes the skincare routine. If you use one with SPF on the day you can just skip the next and last step. I must also say that I do not have a “permanent” day or night cream. It should just work well with my skin and I find that there are many good brands, so I always swish back and forth. Also, I think that you have many good products in Europe and don’t need necessarily one from Asia. Right now I switch between a day cream from Alterra and one from Klapp back and forth. The one from Alterra I was allowed to take with me at the Schön für mich event by Rossmann for testing and the one from Klapp comes from the Glow Convention.
Step 10: Sun Protection
If you already have sunscreen in the moisturizer (or in your makeup), this step, as mentioned above is superfluous. Otherwise, even if you are not on holiday and lie down on the beach, you should wear sunscreen every day to protect the skin from aging faster and skin cancer. Since I already have sunscreen in my make-up, I renounce this step of the 10 Step Korean Skincare Routine. In the summer, when I often did not wear make-up, I used sunscreen from Malu Wilz which is especially for the face. The tube was once upon a time in a goodie bag and I’m pretty happy with the product.
Oh, and at night, of course, the sunscreen can be omitted.