By Emma Harris
If you’ve been searching for the best skin care products, the sheer amount of products on the net might be overwhelming. Depending on your skin type, finding the right product might take a bit of trial and error. My skin is both dry and acne-prone. It also reacts when I use products with too many essential oils. Given some of those issues, here are some products that I’ve used to keep my skin looking at its best:
You can find a wide assortment of K-Beauty products at Olive Young.
I’m a fan of both oil and balm cleansers. At the moment, I’m all over Farmacy’s Green Clean Balm Cleanser. It is a light green colored balm that smells faintly of limes. It has a sherbet-like consistency and melts easily with a slight rub of my fingertips. What I love about this cleanser is that it effectively breaks down layers of my sunscreen and concealer without any hard tugging. It leaves my skin soft and ready for my second cleanse.
As for my second cleanser, a lot of it will depend on how my skin is feeling. If it’s in pretty good shape, without too much dryness, then I’ll turn to Rovectin’s Conditioning Cleanser. This is a gentle, lightweight cleanser that foams ever so slightly to lift away any residual balm or sunscreen that’s left behind. I like that this cleanser has minimal ingredients with gentle surfactants to cleanse my skin without aggravating my dry skin.
After cleansing, I will use an essence to rebalance my skin. I really like Primera’s Miracle Seed Essence. This product has minimal ingredients but has just enough to create a hydrating layer underneath my serum and moisturizer. It contains niacinamide, which helps to improve uneven skin tone, as well as sodium hyaluronate to help the skin retain water.
A few times a week I’ll use an exfoliator to even my skin texture and allow products to seep in more deeply. I’ll usually switch between two different exfoliators. One of my favorites includes the Treatment Enzyme Peel by Amore Pacific. It is a light-colored powder that is dispensed into your palm. With just a few drops of water, it emulsifies to a gentle foam, which is then rubbed into the skin for about 30 seconds. It leaves my skin feeling soft and never overstripped. If I want a bit of manual exfoliation, then I’ll use Neogen’s Dermology Bio-Peel Gauze Peeling Wine Pads. These are textured pads that are pre-soaked with chemical exfoliants such as glycolic and lactic acid. With several swipes across my face and nose, my skin feels smooth and soft to the touch.
A couple of times a week, I’ll use a sheet mask to provide an extra dose of hydration. At the moment, I’m really liking PACKage’s Don’t Worry Healing Mask. It features centella asiatica which is a great ingredient featured in a number of Korean skincare products. It does a great job in calming down inflamed skin and bringing much-needed moisture back.
On days when I don’t use a sheet mask, I will use a vitamin C serum. For a gentle option, there’s the Vitamin C serum by Klairs. Whereas a lot of vitamin C serums can dry out the skin, this serum glides on like silk and provides a nice hydrating base for a moisturizer.
Since my skin has a tendency to get red, I like using Dr. Jart’s Cicapair Cream. The hero ingredient in this moisturizer is centella asiatica and it does a great job in providing a soothing veil of hydration.
With Korean skincare, there are just so many great sunscreens to choose from. I’m currently using Klairs Soft Airy UV Essence SPF 50. Just like the name suggests, this sunscreen is featherlight and serves as a great primer for foundation or tinted moisturizer.
On days when I’m too lazy to do a sheet mask, I’ll add a sleeping mask on top of my moisturizer. It’s a fast and easy way of recharging my skin without having to wait 15-20 minutes for a sheet mask to soak into my skin. A great beauty shelf staple is Cosrx’s Ultimate Nourishing Rice Overnight Mask. It has a nice, gel-like consistency that doesn’t overwhelm my skin and complements whatever type of moisturizer I’m wearing underneath.
On days when I feel a pimple coming to the surface, I’ll use a pimple patch to flatten the bump down. I like using Cosrx’s Acne Pimple Master Patch. Although it’s discreet enough to use in the day time, I still prefer using it at night. If I use it on a whitehead that has already surfaced, then this patch does a great job in sucking the oil and reducing the size of the bump. It also does a great job in protecting and creating a barrier for the pimple while I’m sleeping.
If you want to shop for Korean beauty products, check out Olive Young. They’ve been around since 1999 and have 1200 stores throughout Korea. With their online store, they deliver products to over 150 countries and provide free shipping to the United States for orders over $50. Products typically arrive in 3-7 days.
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