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10 Step Korean Skin Care Routine

The influence of K-beauty has well and truly made it over to the UK beauty industry, as influencers and celebrities alike are giving it a go, in an attempt to get ‘Glass Skin’. Not one to shy away from a challenge, the team at Procoal gave it a go for one week, to test out how difficult it would be and whether it was worth the effort.

The Process

Following some heavy research online, it appeared evident there wasn’t a clear ’10 step’, as almost all of them had a slight spin on it, but all kept a similar pattern. For example, some opted to include an exfoliator, however this could be pretty heavy on the skin and cause irritation if performed every day. The final order is highlighted below:

  • Oil Cleanser
  • Foam Cleanser
  • Toner
  • Essence
  • Emulsion
  • Serum
  • Sheet Mask
  • Eye Cream
  • Moisturiser
  • SPF

Oil Cleanser

After washing your hands, this is applied straight onto dry skin, helping to remove any make-up and any pollutants which could be lurking on the skin. For the challenge, the Dermalogica Balm was chosen.

Foam Cleanser

A consistent step in the Korean skin care routine is to cleanse twice, as this second step can help to remove any impurities which could cause a breakout. The Biore Baking Soda Wash was opted for as it is known for its great blemish control properties.

Toner

This is seen as a great preparation step, while also removing any excess residue left over from the cleansers, however Jess isn’t a huge fan of toner’s in general, therefore they opted for the Pixi Glow Tonic because it is more of a liquid exfoliator and will help bring a glow and radiance to the skin.

Essence

Moving on to the anti-ageing aspect of the routine, the essence can be incredibly hydrating, working in a similar manner to a serum. This was an area neither Jess or Tom were very clued up on, while after some advice, they chose the Estee Lauder Micro Essence.

Emulsion

This layer isn’t included in all the routines you can find online (around 20% of them), however it helps to add to the ‘glass skin’ appearance. With emulsions normally water based, Jess struggled to find something in her artillery of beauty products, so the closest option was the L’Oréal HydraGenius Aloe Water.

Serum

From helping to firm and smooth the skin, to restoring elasticity and moisture to the skin, as well as helping to regulate oil production, a serum is a crucial part of the daily skincare routine. Jess and Tom opted for a Vitamin C serum following some extensive research, with the Vonza serum the product of choice.

Sheet Mask

This is the longest part of the entire process, taking 15-20 minutes, however it is the pampering part of the process and can be quite relaxing in the morning. The Marine Moisture Sheet Mask was chosen, with each sheet mask packed with 25ml of extract rich serum, as well as botanical extracts.

Eye Cream

While some debate the real value of an eye cream, the fact is the area under your eyes is highly sensitive and is unfortunately prone to dark circles, fine lines and wrinkles. Fortunately, this is where an eye cream steps in, to moisturise, nourish and prevent dullness, softening those fine lines. The weapon of choice for this program was the Aurelia Eye Cream.

Moisturiser

Jess couldn’t stop going on about her love and admiration for the Charlotte Tilbury Magic Cream, therefore this was decided before the routine was even lined up!

SPF

One of the key takeaways from the entire routine was the requirement to protect yourself from the sun, even during winter months. Opting for a quick and easy spray as the final touch, they chose the La Roche-Posay anthelios invisible face mist, SPF 50.

 10 step korean skincare image

How Long Did It Take?

On the first day it took an exhausting 1 hour, however as the week progressed the time continued to decrease as it became a quick pattern, eventually bringing it down to 40 minutes. The biggest time resource was the sheet mask, with the targeted time on the face being 20 minutes, making it 50% of the time consumption by the end of the week.

 

What Other Items Did People Include In The 10 Step Routine?

As we mentioned, not everyone had the exact same routine as us. Some opted to use an exfoliator each day, however we weren’t sure whether this might cause some irritation so we opted against. Lip balm was also sometimes used, but this felt like an easy way out when struggling to know what to include, as this is very much separate to every other part of the process.

Some others added in the Ampoule, which worked very much like the serum, to offer some anti-ageing benefits, helping to target specific skincare concerns. The issue is it didn’t seem to offer much more than what was already being included in our routine, so we weren’t sure if would just be doubling up and offering limited return.

We mentioned SPF and moisturiser as a separate step, however a couple did use a moisturiser which had an SPF in, allowing them to sneak in an extra option.

 

Did It Work?

Both Jess and Tom felt it worked amazingly and were very much impressed by the results. Tom’s skin was certainly glowing by the end, however this might be less surprising considering he’s not used to applying anything to the skin.

Both Tom and Jess had a slight outbreak on day 2, but this disappeared within 48 hours and the skin was completely clear by the end.

One stumbling block was that the eyes did sting by day four and every morning they stung for about 10-20 minutes, with so many items packed onto the face.

They both loved the foam cleanser as a starting point, but maybe wouldn’t apply two cleansers going forward, while they have both committed to continuing the serum, eye cream, moisturiser and SPF on a daily basis. The sheet mask seemed to offer great results, but due to time requirements, that would be dropped to 1-2 times per week.

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