Korean skincare routines with 9+ steps are currently taking the beauty world by storm. Can using so many products really leave you with better results than the average cleanser, serum, and moisturizer routine? Everyone knows the first step to a flawless face starts with a good skin care routine, but nine or more steps is overkill… or is it? To find out for myself, I switched up my entire routine. For the past month I have been performing my Korean skincare routine, with a Southern twist to include my favorite products of course! Spoiler alert: my skin has never been better.
Step One: L’Occitane Immortelle Oil Make-Up Remover
A Korean skincare routine starts with an oil based cleanser to cut through makeup. This L’Occitane make-up removing oil has long been a favorite of mine, and it smells wonderful! It cuts through any makeup that I am wearing with ease; it practically slides right off my face without any hard rubbing. The thing that I like most about it is that the oil is that it has anti-aging properties, so it leaves my skin soft and nourished.
Step Two: Clarins One-Step Gentle Exfoliating Cleanser
The second step is a water-based cleanser, and this Clarins one is my new favorite! I love that it does double duty, because it also acts as a gentle exfoliator, which covers step three as well. For me, this is the perfect amount of exfoliation; it leaves my skin smooth without being too abrasive. This cleanser is super refreshing and has a wonderful citrus scent to it. It is great for early mornings because it wakes me up and leaves me refreshed!
Step Three: Peter Thomas Roth Enzyme Mask
I don’t do this step everyday, I only do it in the morning every three or four days, but it makes all the difference. I can honestly say that I have never came across a better mask than this Pumpkin Enzyme Mask. It only takes seven minutes, and my skin is absolutely glowing afterwards. Seriously, my skin looks and feels fabulous! It gets rid of dead skin, leaves my skin soft, and evens any redness. It smells exactly like pumpkin pie, which is somewhat strange, but in a good way.
Step Four: Son & Park Beauty Water
One thing that I have never used is toner, and after using this one, I feel like I was crazy not to. I got it at Sephora after hearing rave reviews about it from my friends. The first thing I noticed about this when using it was the fabulous scent. The toner has a fresh, springy scent with floral tones to it, but it is not too overpowering. It is a super easy product to use, all you have to do is squeeze some on to a cotton pad and wipe your face. It leaves your face feeling fresh, clean, and hydrated. I love how it wisps away any dead skin cells, you can even see a bit of dirt on the cotton pad (kind of gross). The best part about this toner is that it is a multi-tasker. On those busy days when you don’t feel like doing the whole routine, you can use it as a cleanser as well!
Step Five: May Coop Raw Sauce
Another product with a fabulous scent, this essence is instantly absorbed and balances the skin. The essence is supposedly what really sets a Korean skincare routine apart, it prepares the skin to absorb a serum and moisturizer. I have noticed that after using this, my serum absorbs super quickly. I also use this product on the backs of may hands and it lets forever!
Step Six (Morning): Drunk Elephant C-Firma™ Day Serum
This day serum is the second product from Drunk Elephant that I have tried and fell in love with. Like the Peter Thomas Roth mask, this also has pumpkin enzyme in it, so it has a similar scent. In the morning it absorbs super quickly, and protects your skin from free radicals, and other environmental polluters. I have found that it even makes my skin feel tighter, and somewhat firmer, which is a bonus.
Step Six (Night): Drunk Elephant T.L.C. Framboos™ Glycolic Night Serum
Drunk Elephant is a new favorite Southern staple of mine, and this night serum is what started my obsession. I began using this a while back, before I started my K-beauty endeavor. Even when I was just cleansing and moisturizing, adding this serum to my routine made my skin 100x better. After about a week of use, I had no more problems with the redness that I would get here and there from picking at my face (I know, such a bad habit). I also noticed my skin seemed more hydrated, thus the fine lines I thought I had no longer exist! I appreciate that all of Drunk Elephant’s products are made with only the best ingredients, and that it is owned by a woman from Houston.
Step Seven: Farmacy Hydrating Coconut Gel Mask – Deep Moisture (Cucumber)
Since it is winter, my skin needs all of the hydration that it can get and this mask works wonders. Farmacy makes a lot of products that I am fond of, especially those that hydrate. These masks pack hydration in my face, and the results last for a few days. You don’t need to do this step everyday, I only do it about once or twice a week (… or every two weeks, but who’s counting?). Another reason I like this mask is that it comes in packs of 3, which makes it a bit easier!
Step Eight: Clinique All About Eyes™ Rich
I seriously have been using this eye cream since I was in high school, and I still love it. My mom got kit for me when I first started wearing makeup because it was one of her favorites. If my mom is any indication, this stuff works! Her eyes are nice and youthful, and absent of wrinkles. This cream really holds moisture in, and nourishes the under-eye area. I have found that it brightens my eyes pretty well in the morning, too.
Step Nine: Peter Thomas Roth Water Drench Hyaluronic Cloud Cream
Finally, we make it to the moisturizer! I am currently using this moisturizer because of all the buzz about it I had heard. While it is not my favorite, I do like it. I can see it doing better in the summer, when their is more moisture in the air, since it draws the moisture from the air. In the dry weather we are currently having, it acts more as a lightweight moisturizer. I recently went to Punta Cana though, and it performed fabulously there. My skin was glowing and very moisturized! This June, I definitely will re-purchase to see how it fairs in a Michigan summer.
Step Ten: Clarins Sunscreen Multi-Protection Broad Spectrum SPF 50
Not going to lie, this is a step that I often forget/don’t do. Part of the reason is that it has been extremely cloudy lately, and part is that my foundation has 30 SPF in it already. It really is important to wear sunblock everyday though, so as to not prematurely age your skin. This sunscreen is not greasy at all, it feels like a regular moisturizer. It also does not have an overpowering sunscreen smell to it.
So would I recommend this routine and is it worth it? Definitely, I think that it can make improvements to anyone’s skin! I don’t know about y’all, but I think this routine is definitely overwhelming, and may be overkill. Don’t let it stress you out though, you can start with a few steps and work your way up! Since starting this routine I have noticed a lot of positive changes in my skin. Overall, it is smoother, firmer, more hydrated, and I hardly ever get a pimple. I have also found that the process is extremely relaxing and therapeutic. Something about spending so much time on your skin makes you feel good, its like having a spa day, everyday! The best result of this routine for me has been the glow; my face is so bright that it gives me an extra boost of confidence! I will definitely be continuing on with this routine. Even when I skip a few steps, I know that I am making improvements to my skin’s appearance and health! What are your thoughts, do you think a Korean skincare routine is of you?