Beauty Products

The 10-Step Korean Skincare Routine: A Comprehensive Guide

In recent years, Korean skincare has taken the beauty world by storm, with its innovative products and extensive routines. At the heart of Korean skincare is the renowned 10-step routine, which has gained popularity for its effectiveness in achieving clear, radiant, and youthful skin. In this article, we will delve into each step of the Korean skincare routine, exploring its purpose, recommended products, and tips for implementation.

Step 1: Oil Cleanser

The first step in the Korean skincare routine is the oil cleanser. Designed to dissolve makeup, sunscreen, and excess sebum, oil cleansers effectively cleanse the skin without stripping away its natural moisture. Popular oil cleansers include Banila Co Clean It Zero and The Face Shop Rice Water Bright Cleansing Oil.

Step 2: Water-Based Cleanser


Following the oil cleanser, the water-based cleanser helps remove any remaining impurities. It deep cleanses the skin and prepares it for the subsequent steps. Mild and pH-balanced cleansers such as Cosrx Low pH Good Morning Gel Cleanser or Innisfree Jeju Volcanic Pore Cleansing Foam are highly recommended.

Step 3: Exfoliation

Exfoliation plays a vital role in removing dead skin cells and unclogging pores. Physical exfoliants, like sugar scrubs, are popular in the Korean skincare routine. However, chemical exfoliants containing AHAs (Alpha Hydroxy Acids) or BHAs (Beta Hydroxy Acids) are also widely used for their gentle and effective exfoliating properties.

Step 4: Toner

Toners in Korean skincare are not the alcohol-based astringents but rather hydrating and pH-balancing liquids. They prep the skin for better absorption of subsequent skincare products. Popular toners include Son & Park Beauty Water and Klairs Supple Preparation Facial Toner.

Step 5: Essence

Essences are lightweight, highly concentrated liquids that deliver a boost of hydration and nourishment to the skin. They help improve skin texture, brighten complexion, and address specific skin concerns. Missha Time Revolution The First Treatment Essence and Cosrx Advanced Snail 96 Mucin Power Essence are beloved choices.

Step 6: Serums/Ampoules

Serums and ampoules are potent treatments targeted towards specific skin concerns like acne, hyperpigmentation, or aging. They contain a higher concentration of active ingredients, penetrating deep into the skin to deliver visible results. Some popular options include Innisfree Green Tea Seed Serum and Dr. Jart+ Cicapair Serum.

Step 7: Sheet Masks

Sheet masks are a staple in Korean skincare and provide intense hydration and nourishment. They come in various formulations to address different skin concerns. Brands like Etude House, Tony Moly, and Mediheal offer a wide range of sheet masks for every skin type.

Step 8: Eye Cream

The delicate skin around the eyes requires special attention. Eye creams are formulated to hydrate, reduce puffiness, and minimize the appearance of fine lines and dark circles. Popular choices include Laneige Water Bank Eye Gel and Mizon Snail Repair Eye Cream.

Step 9: Moisturizer


Moisturizers lock in hydration and create a protective barrier on the skin. Korean moisturizers are often lightweight, non-greasy, and packed with nourishing ingredients. Belif The True Cream Aqua Bomb and Etude House Moistfull Collagen Cream are highly regarded in the K-beauty community.

Step 10: Sunscreen


Last but certainly not least, sunscreen is essential for protecting the skin from harmful UV rays. Korean sunscreens are known for their lightweight formulas and high SPF ratings. Some popular options include Missha All Around Safe Block Essence Sun Milk and Biore UV Aqua Rich Watery Essence.




The 10-step Korean skincare routine offers a comprehensive and holistic approach to achieving healthy, radiant skin. While it may seem extensive, the routine allows for customization and adaptation to individual needs. With a plethora of Korean skincare products available in the market, you can embark on your journey to flawless skin by incorporating these steps into your daily routine. Remember, consistency is key, and taking care of your skin should be a pleasurable and self-care-filled experience. So embrace the K-beauty philosophy and discover the transformative power of the 10-step Korean skincare routine.

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