Korean beauty products have been all over the headlines for a few years now, but I wanted to address some common myths that are either misunderstood or exaggerated. Let’s start with the 10 Step Korean Skincare Regimen.
Here are the 10 steps:
1. Oil Cleanser/Makeup Remover
2. Regular Cleanser
4. Face Mask
6. Eye Cream
9. Moisturizer/Night Cream
10. SPF/Sleep Mask (depending on time of day)
I know, it’s a lot. When I first heard “10 steps” I was like are you kidding me?! Who has time for 10 steps?? But upon closer evaluation, I realized I already do many of these steps and I’m sure you do too.
Myth 1: You have to do all 10 steps
No, you don’t have to. And even if you do, you shouldn’t be using 10 steps every single day. For me personally, using an essence, serum, night cream, AND sleep mask is overkill. I will breakout like crazy. I only use serums and night creams in the winter and in the summer, a great antioxidant-filled moisturizer does the trick.
Myth 2: Korean beauty products are better than American/Western products
Personally, I grew up using both American and Korean skincare products and I have to say that Korean beauty products will NOT always be superior. Shocker I know.
However, there are two reasons why many people think Korean brands are better.
1)There’s higher competition in Korea, so companies try a lot harder to stand out and grab customers. Because of this, they’re more likely to focus on ingredients. There’s no such thing as “$5 face moisturizer” in Korea. Every drugstore moisturizer is $10+ and if it’s a cream, it will be $20+. (However, just because they have better ingredients doesn’t mean they don’t include “bad” ingredients)
2)Korean companies are a lot more brave when it comes to trying new ingredients, so you’re more likely to find something completely unique and different that probably isn’t available in the West.
Brands I like
Innisfree is a great brand that focuses on natural ingredients. Most of their products have a “5-free system.” The number will vary, but it means they don’t contain certain ingredients such as parabens, mineral oil, synthetic colorants, artificial fragrances, animal ingredients, or imidazolidinyl urea.
Laneige is a little more luxurious. Rather than nature, they use science to back up the chemistry and research that has gone into their products. This doesn’t mean they’re full of “bad chemicals.” Rather, they look at the histology of skin and examine how certain ingredients affect it on a microscopic level.
What worked for me
Hormonal breakouts were really common for me, but the one thing that really changed my life is face masks. Religiously using face masks 3-4 times a week changed my skin completely. I have one for pores, one for hydration and I switch off. One major reason Korean’s have great skin, apart from their 10 Step Regimen, is their dedication to routine. Find the products that work for your skin and stick with it!
Combo/Dry, Sensitive Skin