The Korean Skincare Routine for the Clueless Filipina

Recently, I’ve been becoming really interested in all things Korean skincare and I discovered The 10-Step Korean Skincare Routine from esthetician Charlotte Cho of Sokoglam.com. It’s basically a foundation skincare routine for people who are not fully invested in the topic.

I was hesitant to try it out at first because come on, 10 STEPS?! But once I began faithfully doing it twice a day, even though I haven’t been completely invested in all the steps, I’ve been seeing a huge improvement on my skin’s condition. My breakouts have greatly decreased (except on red days, of course) and my overall complexion has improved.

I wanted to share it with my fellow Filipinos because it’s very effective and I’m pretty sure not a lot of us are familiar with Korean Skincare. With enough research and experience of certain products for several months now, I can confidently encourage others to try this routine out as well.

I’ll be sharing with you all of the steps used by several Korean women with the inclusion of my own personal experience and about how to incorporate them into your skincare routine. Alongside these, I’ll also mention the products I’ve been using and also a few products that I’ve heard are pretty good but haven’t actually tried.

 

Step 1: Oil-based cleanser

You need an oil-based cleanser to cleanse your skin well without stripping it of the natural oils that your skin actually needs. Oil-based cleansers, including milk cleansers and balms, are great mediums to remove makeup and stubborn substances such as your sunscreen, BB cream, dirt and etc. This is absolutely essential to all skin types, even oily skin! The idea that putting oil on your face will make it even oilier is a myth. Oil-based cleansers will help control and balance your facial oil while cleansing the surface of your face as well.

Product recommendations:

Products I’ve tried

  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil (effective but difficult to remove, use warm water for washing it off)
  • Cetaphil Daily Facial Cleanser (not oil-based, but it’s a cleansing milk although it can’t be used in place of a make up remover)

Recommended by experts

  • Banila Co. Clean It Zero Purity Cleansing Balm 
  • Etude House Real Art Moisture Cleansing Oil

 

Step 2: Water-based cleanser

A water-based cleanser gently yet completely cleanses your face while allowing it to breathe in its cleanliness as well. It removes residue from the oil-based cleanser and other impurities found on the surface of your skin. This method is often referred to as double-cleansing. I usually double cleanse during night time and use my water-based cleanser in the morning. However, some Koreans double cleanse twice a day as well.

Tip: Use a gentle cleansing tool!

Product recommendations:

Products I’ve tried

  • Lactacyd Baby Wash
  • The Face Shop Herb Day 365 Cleansing Foam (I only use this on exfoliate days because it’s very drying; I’ll post a review of the product in the future)
  • Shiseido Senka Perfect Whip Cleansing Foam (My favorite among the three, to be honest)

Recommended by experts

  • Nature Republic 92% Aloe Vera Cleansing Foam

 

Step 3: Exfoliator

Exfoliating your skin should be done 1-2 times a week. By doing this, you are removing the dead skin cells and impurities stuck on your pores. This is very important as it reduces the chances of acne occurring and it allows your skin to absorb all the nutrients that you’re going to add in later really well. Also, exfoliation can be done both chemically and physically. Chemical exfoliation is generally more effective and is best for people with sensitive skin while physical exfoliation is effective in itself but it’s not as good as the former.

Product recommendations:

Products I’ve tried

  • 1 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil, 1 tbsp brown sugar, 1 calamansi: lightly scrub onto face, leave on for 1-2 minutes and wash off with facial foam and warm water.
  • Skinfood Strawberry Black Sugar Mask Wash Off

Recommended by experts

  • Innisfree Jeju Volcanic Pore Clay Mask

 

Step 4: Toner

Moisten a cotton pad/puff with toner. Gently slide the cotton on face in upward motion to avoid pulling on the skin and causing wrinkles/fine lines. DO NOT SOAK. Toners are absolutely essential in everyone’s skincare routine because it cleanses your face even more while also adding in a few of the soothing nutrients that your face needs, depending on the type of toner you have. Most toners contain alcohol in them which is alright but it would be best to avoid toners containing the said ingredient. For acne-prone skin, be sure to use the most gentle toner that you could possibly have. I highly recommend toners from Korean brands because they are very hydrating and very gentle on the skin.

Product Recommendations

Products I’ve tried

  • The Face Shop Chia Seed Hydrating Toner
  • VMV Hypoallergenics Superskin 3 Monolaurin + Mandelic Acid Toner (active acne treatment)
  • Celeteque Acne Solutions Oil Control Toner
  • 1 part Organic Apple Cider Vinegar + 1 part purified water (effectively lessens white & black heads)

Recommended by experts

  • Son & Park Beauty Water
  • Etude House Wonder Pore Freshner
  • Mamonde Rose Water Toner

 

Step 5: Essence

Essences are applied on the face using either a cotton pad or bare hands. These function as vitamins in order to ensure that your skin is properly hydrated and healthy. Their functions vary from one essence to another but overall, use this to supply your skin with the nutrients that it lacks and/or to help your skin achieve a certain goal that you want to (ex. anti-acne, pore-tightening, anti skin aging, skin brightening, etc).

Product Recommendations

Products I’ve tried

  • The Face Shop Jeju Volcanic Lava Pore Essence (minimizes the size of pores after months of use)

Recommended by experts

  • Missha Time Revolution The First Treatment Essence (anti-aging)
  • Nature Republic 80% Aloe Vera Essence (anti-acne)

 

Step 6: Serum/Ampoule

Serums or Ampoules are more concentrated substances that are also more focused in giving your skin the nutrients that it needs. It’s actually one of the most effective mediums that should be present in your skincare routine when you’re trying to achieve something for your skin due to its high density and concentration, as I’ve mentioned. It’s up to you whether or not you’d like to use both essences and serums however, if I had to choose between the two, I’d definitely pick using the latter simply because it works faster.

Product Recommendations

Products I’ve tried

  • Leftover serums from face masks inside the pack!

Recommended by experts

  • Missha Time Revolution Night Repair Science Activator Ampoule
  • Innisfree Green Tea Seed Serum

 

Step 7: Mask Sheets

Mask sheets are one of the best Korean inventions of all time. These things give your skin the right oomph that it needs especially if you’re looking for the best way to instantly vamp up your skin’s condition. Using a face mask 1-2 times a week is enough for regular people but if you feel like your face needs some spa treatment then you can use it as many times as you’d like. I usually apply my mask sheets on exfoliate days because I feel like it would be the best time for my skin to absorb all the nutrients that it has.

Tip: If you’re trying to achieve a certain skin goal, make sure you use a certain type of mask sheet continuously. For example, if you’re trying to lighten your skin it would be best to use lightening sheet masks for a certain period of time rather than using different mask sheets that serve different purposes.

Product Recommendations:

Products I’ve tried

  • The Face Shop Real Nature Face Masks
  • Etude House I Need You Mask Sheets

Recommended by experts

  • Leaders Mask Sheets
  • Manefit Bling Bling Hydrogel Mask Sheet

Step 8: Eye cream (optional)

I don’t have much to say about eye creams because I’ve never tried using them but people say they’re very effective. I think it’s pretty self-explanatory why you need them, though (ex. dark under eye circles, etc).

Product Recommendations:

Products I’ve tried

  • none yet (6/8/2016)

Recommended by experts

  • Missha Misa Geum Sul Vitalizing Eye Cream
  • Elizabeth Arden Eye Care 0.5 Oz Perpetual Moisture 24 Eye Cream
  • Innisfree Eco Science Eye Cream
  • Innisfree Green Tea Seed Eye Cream

 

Step 9: Moisturizer/Emulsion

Moisturizers are one of the most important parts of your skincare routine. You cannot have great skin without an effective moisturizer (unless of course you were born lucky). I used to think that I didn’t need one because my skin is already very oily but I was wrong. I learned that moisturizers help decrease the oiliness in your face by balancing out the excess sebum and giving your skin the right kind of moisture that it badly needs.

Tip: If you have oily skin, never use a cream-type moisturizer. Only trust gel ones!


Product Recommendations

Products I’ve tried

  • VMV Spring Fresh Oil-Free Nourisher for Oily Skin
  • The Face Shop Chia Seed Hydrating Emulsion

Recommended by experts

  • Etude House Moistfull Collagen Emulsion
  • Nature Republic Soothing & Moisture Aloe Vera 80% Emulsion

Step 10: Night pack (optional)

Because your skin repairs itself when you’re asleep, it’s always a good idea to feed your skin good stuff while you’re sleeping. I bought the Nature Republic Aloe Vera Gel a few months back and leave it on my skin once or twice a week and it’s amazing.  If you’re legit trying to get yourself some beauty sleep, be sure to grab one of these. I mean, you just put it on, go to sleep and wake up with supple skin. What more could you ask for?

Product Recommendations:

Products I’ve tried

  • Nature Republic Aloe Vera 92% Soothing Gel

Recommended by experts

  • Laneige Water Sleeping Mask

Step 11: Sunscreen

Product recommendations

Sunscreen is very important in the morning! I cannot stress this enough. They say that sunlight is one of the most harmful things that cause skin damage and skin aging. Always use a sunscreen under your BB/CC/DD creams or whatever it is that you use. I used to think that my water cushion from The Face Shop (listed below) was enough sun protection but I was wrong so I’m off to buying myself one of these very soon as well. Try to find ones that aren’t sticky! The products I’ve used weren’t sticky on my skin at all so you might want to give them a try.

Product Recommendations

Products I’ve tried

  • The Face Shop Oil Water Cushion SPF 50+ PA+++ (not really advisable)
  • Biore UV Aqua Rich SPF 50+ PA+++
  • Laneige Pore Control BB Cushion

Recommended by experts

  • Etude House Sunprise Mild Airy Finish SPF 50+ PA+++
  • Innisfree Eco Safety Perfect Sunblock SPF 50+ PA+++

 

That was a pretty long blog post! I actually spent 3 days writing this one. I sincerely hope this helped you (if you took the time to actually go through everything). If you have any more questions/inquiries, feel free to ask me. Much thanks and good luck on your journey to great skin! 🙂

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s