Why Korean Skincare Is EVERYWHERE Right Now
K-beauty is all the rage at the moment. You’re sure to have seen or read about Korean skincare products or the infamous ten-step routine – but why is it so popular, and is it worth the hype?
Let’s start with a key question: why is skincare so important in Korea? Well, beauty, appearance, and sun protection are huge in Korean culture. The Korean skincare market generating over $13.1 billion each year in sales – putting it in the world’s top ten biggest beauty markets. Korean babes are all about achieving dewy, porcelain skin, free from blemishes, and that’s definitely something we can all relate to.
The popularity of Korean skincare has quickly made its way around the world, thanks to social media and the availability of Korean products in the mainstream US shops, like Walmart. With cute, clever marketing, teens and young womxn have quickly gotten caught up in the K-beauty trend.
However, before you get carried away, know that not all skincare products will deliver results for everyone. For major skincare issues, always chat to your dermatologist before trying out a new skincare routine. Still keen to learn more? Here’s why Korean skincare is everywhere right now and how you can check it out.
What is special about Korean skincare?
If you’re wondering why Korean beauty products are better, it’s all about the ingredients. Korean products stand out for their use of active ingredients, proven to help with reducing wrinkles, boosting skin elasticity, and fading pigmentations.
These products can be sold over the counter, which drew international cosmetics companies to Korea as a testing bed for new products. Decisive Korean womxn know what they want (and what sucks), so only the best of the best products make it onto the international market. K-beauty products also use plenty of natural ingredients, which we love.
In Western culture, we tend to wash our face in the morning, then get on with our day – that’s good enough, right? Um, not so fast. The Korean approach is very different, with a belief that layering multiple products, each with a specific purpose, is the best way to go.
This leads us to the famous ten-step skincare routine. Yep, dedicated fans of K-beauty seriously must have the patience of a saint, because this routine requires applying not one, not two, but ten different products to your face, day and night.
Do you dare to try out the ten-step routine? If so, most generally look like this:
- Use an oil cleanser to wash your face.
- Use a foam or cream cleanser to wash your face (wait, didn’t we just do this? Yep – K-beauty loves double cleansing, meaning you wash your face twice with different methods, ideally removing any impurities a single cleanser doesn’t catch).
- Apply toner.
- Apply essence, which is a water or gel-based moisturizer.
- Apply emulsion, another moisturizer packed with natural botanicals and ingredients.
- Apply a serum, a product loaded with antioxidants to help improve skin tone and reduce wrinkles.
- Use a sheet mask – there are plenty of sheet masks to target just about any skin issue.
- Apply an eye cream to moisturize skin around the eye and help reduce fine lines.
- Moisturize your skin.
- Apply sunscreen (even if you aren’t following the Korean routine, all RBL gals should be doing this – it can save your life!).
Which Korean beauty products should I check out?
If you’re thinking, damn, I barely have time for breakfast in the morning, let alone a full-on spa treatment, you’re not alone. Most of us do not have the time or patience to commit to ten steps. However, what you can take from the ten steps is the importance of cleansing, moisturizing, and daily use of sunscreen. Those three things will be enough to give your skin a fresh start each day.
You can definitely take the leap into using active ingredients like peptides, retinoids, and vitamins, but do plenty of research first about what works best for your skin type. Take extra precautions when using these products, too, as they often make your skin more sensitive to the sun.
To try a bit of Korean beauty in your life, here are a few products you can easily try out.
Innisfree Green Tea Foam Cleanser
This daily cleanser, from one of the biggest K-beauty brands, is gentle enough to use morning and night. The pesticide-free botanicals enrich your skin, while the invigorating green tea smell is a great way to kickstart your day.
Mizon Black All in One Snail Repair Cream
Hold up, does that say snail cream? Hear us out! This daily moisturizer contains snail filtrate, which is a fancy word for snail slime (don’t worry, the snails aren’t harmed in the process of making these products).
This Mizon cream is also rich in natural extracts for soft, supple skin. If you’re chill with the fact that you’re putting snail slime on your face, this is one of the most popular Korean skincare products.
Daily UV Defense Sunscreen SPF 36
To reduce your risk of skin cancer, prevent fine lines, and avoid sunspots, a daily SPF is a no-brainer. The Daily UV Defense is an easy, lightweight sunscreen for everyday use. Plus, we love that it doesn’t feel thick and heavy like typical sunscreens.
Mamonde Rose Flower Lab Essence Sheet Mask
One of the coolest parts of Korean skincare is the sheet masks. They’re super fun to use, provide all sorts of hydration and goodies for your skin, and make you look really creepy and hilarious (big Hannibal Lecter energy).
This mask in particular stands out because it smells amazing, with rose extract to hydrate and soothe tired skin.
Does Korean skincare really work?
So, what’s the verdict on Korean skincare? We absolutely love the fun of K-beauty, and it can be a good way to inspire yourself to take better care of your skin. That being said, don’t expect miracles – for serious changes to your skin, it’s best to see a dermatologist, who can prescribe stronger treatments for issues like acne.
With plenty of affordable products out there, though, there’s no harm in trying it out. Why not grab your pals and a few sheet masks, and plan a makeover night in?