Unlocking the Secrets of Korean Skin Care: Tips for Radiant Skin

korean skincare routine

From K-pop celebrities to the elderly, Koreans seem to have perfected the elixir of beauty. As the quest to achieve glass skin takes over the internet, many skin enthusiasts are choosing more K-beauty products.

For beginners looking to immerse themselves in good Korean skin care products, this article explains all you need to get started, as well as the infamous 10 step Korean skin care process.

What is Korean skincare?

Korean skincare is a skincare approach that focuses on hydration and protection to achieve a dewy and youthful appearance. Koreans believe the skin is like other organs and requires enrichment to function properly. Hence, they spend time and resources extracting beneficial nutrients from plants like rice and ginseng to develop products that enrich the skin, preventing future skin problems.

Another advantage Korean beauty offers is that they formulate soft products devoid of harsh chemicals like alcohol and parabens. Most products are designed for sensitive skin, which means they are free from harsh chemicals. If you are looking to achieve a dewy complexion, it is essential that you follow a step by step Korean skin care routine.

What are the 10-step Korean skincare routine?

The 10 step by step Korean skin care is a 10 step regimen that treats the skin. This multi-step approach involves multiple skin products; thus, we recommend you perform a patch test at the back of your hand for 12 to 24 hours before you begin by following these procedures:

Oil-based cleanser

The first product to use is an oil based cleanser that removes oil debris and makeup residues. This procedure helps remove dirt and other impurities without stripping your natural oils or sebum.

How-to: Choose an oil-based cleanser of your choice and take a small amount of your product onto your palm. Rub it in circles on your wet face. Wash in circular motions to dislodge debris and also promote blood flow. Do this for 2 to 4 minutes, and rinse with lukewarm water.

Water-based cleanser

The second product, while double cleansing, is a water-based cleanser. A water based cleanser removes sweat and dirt. The end goal of double cleansing is to remove both oil- and water-based dirt.

How-to: Squeeze out one or two pumps of your water based cleanser onto clean palms. We recommend Dermaclara Claraprep Hydrating Cleanser or any other Korean cleaner of your choice. Follow the same procedure as mentioned while using the oil based cleanser.

Oil based cleanser


The next step in this 10-step Korean skin care regimen is exfoliation. Exfoliating is a process of sludging or removing dead skin cells and product buildup to reveal a better skin complexion. You can choose to exfoliate with a physical or chemical exfoliant of any brand.

How-to: On a damp face, scoop out the exfoliant and rub it on your face for at least one to three minutes. Rinse with lukewarm water.

Korean skincare toner

The Korean skincare toner is of utmost importance among the various Korean skin care products you should purchase. Unlike most toners that contain alcohol and harsh astringents, Korean skin toners contain antioxidants and are friendly for people with sensitive skin.

How-to: Pour the toner onto a cotton pad and gently pat on your skin for absorption.


A skin essence is another essential product for achieving the classic Korean skin glow. Most essences are water-based and are fortified with nutrients to nourish the skin.

How-to: Drop some of the products onto your palm and gently pat them lightly onto your skin.


A serum is a highly-packed skin product that is usually oil-based and concentrated with more nutrients. Depending on your choice of serum, it can treat hyperpigmentation and even reverse aging. Ensure you pick a serum that addresses the skin issue you intend to treat.

How-to: Drop some serum onto your palms and massage your face. You can apply the serum droplets to your face directly and massage. However, ensure that you avoid direct contact with the serum droplets to prevent product contamination.

korean skin care products

Sheet mask

In most Korean skin care steps shown, a sheet mask is an absolute necessity. Many Korean sheet masks come in cute packaging and are sealed in serums. The serums contain vitamins and minerals that are beneficial to the skin.

How-to: Open the packaging and take out the soaked sheet masks. Carefully unwrap it and place it on your face; line your face with the cut-outs and leave it for 20 to 30 minutes.

Eye cream

The skin beneath your eyes is sensitive to external stress, like UV rays. Due to this sensitivity, aging tends to start with the eyes before spreading to other parts. A good eye cream manages the appearance of premature eye wrinkles to keep you young.

How-to: Scoop or squeeze a pea-sized amount of the eye cream on your pinkie or little finger. Then, gently tap it beneath your eyes until it gets absorbed.


Koreans believe your moisturizer choice can make or mar your entire skincare routine. Hence, they prioritize attention to the type of Korean skincare moisturizer brand you use. We recommend you pick a light moisturizer if you have oily or combination skin and a heavy moisturizer if you have dry skin.

How-to: Scoop out two pea-sized amounts of moisturizer or more, depending on your face shape and size. Then, apply the moisturizer all over your face and massage it properly.

Water based cleanser


From staying under shades in public to wearing sun-protective overalls, Koreans strive to avoid harmful UV rays. Finish your skin regimen with a hydrating sunscreen and ensure to reapply every 3 to 5 hours.

How-to: Squeeze out at least two fingers worth of sunscreen and rub it on your face. Spread the sunscreen evenly on your face, covering your neck and ears.

What is the difference between Korean skincare routine day and night?

The Korean skincare routine order is a multi-step skin regimens that benefit the skin. But one major difference between both routines is that the night-care routine focuses more on boosting and providing nutrition. Hence, the need for sheet masks and ampoules while the day routine finishes with sun protection or a sunblock.

Does Korean skincare work on all skin types?

There are different Korean skin care regimens designed to tackle different skin issues. However, the 10-step routine is a general procedure to protect and nourish the skin. Perhaps you need special Korean skin care for pimples, we recommend you follow a simpler route by including acne serums and cleaners in your regular routine to treat acne.

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