In what order do I do my Korean skincare?

What Order Should I Follow for my Korean Skincare Routine?

When it comes to Korean skincare, the order in which you apply your products is crucial for optimal results. The multi-step routine typically follows a specific sequence to ensure maximum effectiveness of each product. From cleansing to moisturizing, each step plays a key role in addressing different skincare concerns and improving overall skin health. To learn more about the recommended order of your Korean skincare routine and why it’s important, continue reading below.

The Correct Order for Your Korean Skincare Routine

When it comes to Korean skincare, the order in which you apply your products is crucial to achieving the best results. Following a specific sequence ensures that each product can effectively penetrate the skin and provide the intended benefits. Here is the recommended order for your Korean skincare routine:

1. Oil-Based Cleanser

Start by using an oil-based cleanser to remove makeup, sunscreen, and other oil-based impurities from your skin. Massaging the cleanser into your skin will help dissolve these impurities, allowing them to be easily rinsed away.

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2. Water-Based Cleanser

Next, use a water-based cleanser to remove any remaining impurities, such as sweat and dirt, from your skin. This step ensures that your skin is thoroughly clean and ready to absorb the rest of your skincare products.

3. Exfoliator (Optional)

If you choose to exfoliate your skin, this step would come after cleansing. Exfoliating removes dead skin cells, unclogs pores, and promotes cell turnover, revealing smoother, brighter skin. However, it is recommended to exfoliate only 1-2 times a week to avoid irritating the skin.

4. Toner

After cleansing, apply a toner to balance your skin’s pH levels and prep it for the subsequent skincare products. Toners also help to hydrate and soothe the skin, making it more receptive to other products.

5. Essence

Essence is a lightweight, hydrating product that helps to nourish and prepare the skin for the following treatments. It usually contains active ingredients that target specific skin concerns, such as hydration, brightening, or anti-aging.

6. Serum/Ampoule

Serums and ampoules are concentrated treatments that address specific skin issues, such as wrinkles, dark spots, or acne. They contain potent ingredients that penetrate deep into the skin, delivering intensive benefits.

7. Sheet Mask (Optional)

Sheet masks are a great way to give your skin an extra boost of hydration and nutrients. They are used after serum or ampoule and are left on the skin for a specific amount of time to allow the ingredients to penetrate deeply.

8. Eye Cream

Apply eye cream to the delicate skin around your eyes to hydrate, firm, and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Gently pat the product into the skin using your ring finger to avoid tugging or pulling.

9. Moisturizer

Finish off your skincare routine with a moisturizer to seal in all the previous products and provide long-lasting hydration. Choose a moisturizer suitable for your skin type, whether it be oily, dry, combination, or sensitive.

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10. Sunscreen (Morning Routine)

In the morning, always finish with sunscreen to protect your skin from harmful UV rays and prevent premature aging and skin damage. Use a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30, and reapply throughout the day as needed.

Following this comprehensive skincare routine will help you achieve radiant, healthy skin that glows from within!

According to a recent study, 85% of Korean women follow a multi-step skincare routine daily.

1. Should I do my Korean skincare routine in the morning or at night?

You can do your Korean skincare routine both in the morning and at night. It’s important to cleanse, tone, treat, moisturize, and protect your skin from the sun during the day, while at night you can focus on hydrating and repairing your skin while you sleep.

2. How many steps are typically in a Korean skincare routine?

A standard Korean skincare routine consists of 10 steps: cleanse, exfoliate, tone, essence, treatments, sheet masks, eye cream, moisturizer, sunscreen (during the day), and sleeping mask (at night).

3. Can I skip any steps in my Korean skincare routine?

While it is recommended to follow all 10 steps for optimal results, you can customize your routine based on your skin’s needs. However, it’s important not to skip cleansing, moisturizing, and applying sunscreen.

4. What ingredients should I look for in Korean skincare products?

Look for ingredients like hyaluronic acid, niacinamide, snail mucin, green tea extract, and vitamin C for hydration, brightening, soothing, and anti-aging benefits.

5. In what order should I apply multiple Korean skincare products?

It is generally recommended to apply products from thinnest to thickest consistency. Start with cleanser, then apply toner, essences, serums, ampoules, moisturizers, and finally sunscreen or sleeping mask depending on the time of day.

6. How long should I wait between applying each Korean skincare product?

Wait 1-2 minutes between applying each product to allow proper absorption before moving on to the next step in your skincare routine.

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7. Can I use Korean skincare products if I have sensitive skin?

Yes, there are Korean skincare products specifically formulated for sensitive skin types. Look for products with gentle, soothing ingredients and do a patch test before incorporating new products into your routine.

8. How long does it take to see results from a Korean skincare routine?

Results can vary depending on individual skin concerns, but you may start seeing improvements in your skin’s texture, tone, and hydration within a few weeks of consistently following a Korean skincare routine.

9. Can I use Korean skincare products with other skincare brands?

Yes, you can mix and match Korean skincare products with other skincare brands as long as the products are suitable for your skin type and concerns. Just make sure to layer products in the correct order for maximum efficacy.

10. How do I adjust my Korean skincare routine for different seasons?

During colder months, you may need to incorporate more hydrating and moisturizing products into your routine to combat dryness. In warmer months, you can focus on lighter textures and increased sunscreen protection. Adjust your routine as needed based on your skin’s needs and the climate.


In conclusion, the Korean skincare routine typically involves a multi-step process starting with cleansing, followed by toning, treating, moisturizing, and protecting. It is important to remember that the order of application matters, with products applied in thinner consistency to thicker consistency. This ensures that each product can penetrate the skin effectively and maximize its benefits. Starting with a clean canvas is crucial, so always begin with a gentle cleanser to remove makeup, dirt, and impurities. Toners help to balance the skin’s pH levels and prep it for the next steps in the routine. Treatments such as serums and essences target specific skin concerns, while moisturizers hydrate and nourish the skin. Finally, sunscreen is a vital step in protecting the skin from harmful UV rays that can cause premature aging and damage. Remember to customize your routine based on your skin type and concerns, and be patient as results may take time to show. By following these steps consistently, you can achieve healthy, glowing skin with the popular Korean skincare regimen.