Do We Really Need All These Steps?
Skincare is very personal, and we’ve designed our 10-Step with a lot of flexibility in mind. So, no not everyone needs all 10 steps. After all, your skin is different from someone else’s. You might need to make changes to your routine as summer falls into winter. You might have different skin concerns or breakouts at different times of the month. You might live in a dryer climate or work in an environment that dries out your skin.
Our 10-step isn't a regimen, it's a guideline you can customize to fit your lifestyle. Here's the breakdown of exactly why we suggest each of these steps, and the kinds of products that work for each one.
1. Remove Makeup
Didn’t wear makeup? Skip this step! If you do have any makeup residue, especially on your eyes, then this step is key. Here are the kinds of products that do the job, and are infused with botanicals, essences and benefit-providing goodness that K-Beauty is famous for:
These are gentle and extremely effective at loosening and removing BB creams and other makeup products. They’re also the most typical K-Beauty makeup removers. Those with dry skin will love these, and for those with normal / oily skin, the following steps take care of any residue.
Green Tea Based:
If you’re not ready to use richer oil-based cleansers, these offer nearly oil-free alternatives.
Aloe has moisturizing properties with minimal oil. The soothing properties also make aloe a great choice for those with sensitive skin.
Now that your makeup is gone, you can begin focusing on your skin. Sometimes people are confused about this step, since they already used a makeup remover. “Didn’t I just wash my face?” Removing makeup, especially eye makeup and foundation / contouring, almost always leaves residue. Step 2 is about cleaning your skin and pores now that your face is free of makeup. There are tons of K-Beauty cleansers, and we’re here to help you find the one that’s perfect for you!
These are the classic K-Beauty cleansers found in most kits and recommended by other 10-step routines. There are various types, including skin purifying, skin brightening, deep cleansing, anti-aging and more.
Almost lotion-like in consistency, these often don’t bubble at all. Apply and then remove with tissue followed by water. Good for use in winter, in dry climates or for those who have very dry skin.
With a thinner, milk-like consistency that might or might not foam, these can feel more like a cleansing splash that you wash off. Great for calming red-prone skin, irritated skin, and for those with very sensitive skin.
- Oil-Based Cleansers
These are usually combination oil-foam cleansers. They don’t leave the same oily residue as an oil-based makeup remover, but instead skin is typically softer than with foaming cleansers. Good for those with slightly dry-prone skin.
Usually syrupy in consistency, some bubble up with water, while others foam. Often with slightly more moisturizing properties than standard cleansers, they can be a good alternative to oil-based if your skin needs more hydration during drying winter months.
This step is extremely effective at removing dead skin cells and layers of makeup residue that might have been missed during quick face-washings throughout your busy week. Our favorites are skin peels. Most are infused with nutrient-rich ingredients like snail essence, fruit enzymes, pearl powder or aloe.
These are often activated by fruit essences, forming tiny clumps that roll over dead skin and slough it away. They leave your face incredibly soft, and they work more gently than other types of exfoliators, even on sensitive skin. We recommend these more than using abrasive microbeads and ground seed types, that can scratch skin. Perfect for all skin types.
A slightly more abrasive exfoliator that isn’t as rough on skin as ground seed scrubs or microbead types. Excellent if used on T-Zones for those with normal to combination skin. Avoid delicate eye area.
Mineral-rich with ionizing benefits, and like sugar, is not as harsh on skin as ground seed scrubs and microbeads. These work best on T-Zone only, or for those with oily skin. Since salt has drying properties, these aren’t recommended for those with dry skin. Avoid delicate eye area.
Creamy exfoliants that use plant resin and fruit acids to wash away dead skin. Great for normal and dry skin. Extremely moisturizing with skin plumping properties, so those with very oily skin might want to use another option.
4. Deep Benefit
In a once-weekly routine, it’s a fantastic idea to incorporate one special benefit unique to your skin’s needs. Not everyone needs a “blue smurf” oil control treatment, or charcoal toxin-removal, or any of the other high-benefit products available. Learning about various treatments and evaluating your skin will help you decide what to focus on each week-- or if you need repeated treatments. Not sure which one is right for you? Read on!
Nose Pore Strips:
If your nose produces a lot of sebum (the oily stuff that feels greasy or grimy on skin), your pores have to work overtime to keep clean. Help them out with targeted cleansing in an easy strip that peels right off!
Charcoal Deep Cleansers:
For decades charcoal has been used in hospitals and emergency situations to remove toxins after accidental overdoses or industrial accidents. The same properties that effectively absorb harsh chemicals from the body can get rid of toxins from your skin.This is especially good for those who live in big cities or deal with car smog.
Impurity-Absorbing Mud or Peat Mask Peels:
Your body is constantly working to get rid of impurities, which are released through pores and left on the skin. Help your face stay clear by getting rid of excess sebum and gunkifying particles.
- Numerous others include oil control, dry skin treatment, pore minimizing, dark under-eye circle treatment, acne control, redness soothing, collagen-infusions, and more. Message us for detailed information about any product, and we’ll let you know what it does and how it works!
You’ve cleansed, exfoliated and deep-treated your face. It’s time to restore your pH balance and prepare your skin to absorb nourishing K-Beauty ingredients. The important thing is, having gotten rid of toxins, dirt and impurities from your skin, your own natural oils were stripped away too. Your skin’s acid/alkaline balance has been disrupted. This is how we restore it. Often, these are targeted for specific benefits:
A simple, no-fuss toner focused on pH balance restoration.
Infused with botanical extracts like peppermint or green tea.
Helps diminish pigmentation of dark spots, sun damage and blemishes.
Anti-aging properties for preventing and reducing appearance of wrinkles.
Infused with real snail secretion that protect and actively repair delicate skin cells.
This step the heart of K-Beauty skincare. Many K-Beauty experts advise using more than one skin boosting element, like essence and serum, every day, and essence and ampoule once a week. Or essence in the morning, and ampoule before bed. We recommend trying different products and finding out what works best for your skin.
Typically watery, its nutrients absorb quickly into skin. There’s rarely any feeling of residue afterward.
Usually slick or sometimes with a thin gel-like consistency, these glide on smooth and infuse skin with moisture and nutrients over time.
Often syrupy and dense. These can feel sticky after applying, but the protective properties lock in moisture and sink deep into pores. Recommended as a weekly treatment, during winter, or at night for those with very dry skin. It can also be used as a spot treatment for dry skin patches.
When talking to K-Beauty newbies, this step is often confusing. It’s like a pre-moisturizer that makes skin more soft and supple. Why is it necessary? It isn’t if you have oily skin, or if you want to streamline your 10-Step (another skippable step, hooray!) but for those with dry skin, or those with normal-to-combination skin who want the softest skin they can possibly have, this step is like skincare extra credit points. If you think of your skin like a sponge, the more moist and supple the surface, the more easily it can absorb all of that vitamin-rich K-Beauty goodness!
Perfect for those with oily skin, those who live in humid climates, or for warmer months.
Recommended for those with dry skin issues, those who live in dry / desert areas, or for drying winter months.
This is especially good if you’re going to use emulsion everyday. Choose the products that offers the benefit that’s right for you, and everyday you’ll work toward healthier skin: soothe redness with aloe, treat wrinkles with collagen, repair damaged skin with snail mucin, add a splash of hydration with hyaluronic acid-- there are tons of choices!
8. Eye Care
The skin around our eyes has much less fat than other areas. This makes it thin, delicate and susceptible to early damage. That’s why most eye creams are so much thicker than face creams. You wouldn’t want to put thick layers of eye cream on your T-Zone, but your under-eye area will completely benefit from it. If you use a thicker moisturizer in step 9, it can double for eye care, but if you have dark circles or you want to repair fine lines, we recommend finding a product specially formulated for eyes.
Often infused with collagen or hyaluronic acid, they work to repair and prevent fine lines.
Typically very thick, with dense moisturizing properties for all-day hydration.
Usually with properties that reduce the appearance of puffiness while boosting skin brightness.
No matter what skin type, moisture is critical to long-term elasticity, skin health and damage-prevention. Your moisturizer shouldn’t be the same year-round, and might not even be the same from one week to the next if hormones cause breakouts, or if you experience sensitive skin irritation. Having a few types of moisturizers is a good idea, so you can evaluate your skin and decide what it needs each day.
These are typically everyday creams loaded with nutrients, and many are crafted with beneficial botanicals. They are the go-to for normal and combination skin types.
Dense, Dry-Skin Formulas:
Usually very thick, they can be used all over your face if you have dry skin or during winter, or used as a spot treatment for dry patches.
Lightweight, Sheer Hydration:
Sometimes water-based, these are perfect for those with oily skin or for normal skin during warmer months.
Often these have salicylic acid or tea tree oil. They can be used long-term for chronic relief, or as breakouts occur.
10. Day / Night Edition
Day: SPF Product
SPF is absolutely vital, no matter what the weather. Even on gray days, harmful UV particles filter through clouds and cause damage. If you prefer, use an SPF moisturizer in step 9 to skip this step. Some people prefer to keep SPF separate, so they can control when they use it. For example, if you wash your face before heading out for a night on the town, you might not want the added chemicals in an SPF. There are options for every lifestyle.
SPF Face Lotion:
Especially made for use on face, these don’t have the greasy feel of typical body SPF sunblock. They’re also created to be used under makeup, so they don’t feel heavy and won’t cause caking.
BB Cream or Foundation with SPF:
If you’re typically use pigmented face cream anyway, multi-task with an SPF BB or SPF foundation so you don’t accidentally forget.
Night: Non-SPF Deep Benefit-Over-Time Product
At night, we recommend using a different type of moisturizer that doesn’t have the added chemicals in an SPF. Since you’ll be resting for a few hours, you can really pack in the benefits with a richer moisturizer with all kinds of benefits, from collagen and hyaluronic acids to snail mucin extract and nourishing botanicals.
Thick and buttery, these often have exceptional healing properties. They’re great for normal or combination skin types, taking care of skin repair after a week of sun, dirt, makeup and the hustle of life.
Typically focused to help with a specific issues, such as brightening, oil control, acne treatment, detoxing, anti-aging and more. Find one that tackles your specific needs!
If dry skin is your issue, those hours you spend each night can be put to good use! Find a “sticky”, heavier product that locks moisture in a protective barrier. Wash off in the morning and feel the difference!