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6 Step Korean Skin Care Routine for Beginners: Definitive Guide

Jason Park
Published by: Jason Park
Last updated:

The first time I ever heard about someone using the 10 step Korean skincare routine was on a YouTube video. I was watching this from my tiny room in San Diego.

There was someone explaining why you should be using a Korean skincare routine, and to be exact “the 10 step routine”

Ever since Korean skincare has become a part of my life, mostly because all of my friends and family use it.

And because it actually works.

But for you, I broke it down into 6 steps because this saves you hundreds of dollars, tons of energy, and time from testing different products.

Let’s get started.

Cleansing Oil
MISSHA M Perfect BB Deep Cleansing
MISSHA M Perfect BB Deep Cleansing
  • Effortlessly removes make-up
  • Nourishing Botanicals
  • Non-Greasy
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COSRX One Step Original Clear Pad
COSRX One Step Original Clear Pad
  • Helps Clear Clogged Pores
  • Gently Exfoliates Dead Skin Cells
  • giving the Skin Its Natural Glow
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COSRX Snail Mucin 96% Power Repairing Essence
COSRX Snail Mucin 96% Power Repairing Essence
  • Light-weight Essence
  • Hypoallergenic
  • Dermatologist tested
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Sheet Mask
COSRX Advanced Snail Mucin Power Sheet Mask
COSRX Advanced Snail Mucin Power Sheet Mask
  • Perfect Mask to Add on To Your Daily Routine
  • Rich Hydration and Nourishment
  • Repairing Damaged Skin and Lightening Acne Scars
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The Chok Chok Green Tea Watery Cream
The Chok Chok Green Tea Watery Cream
  • Naturally fermented green tea
  • Lightweight formula sinks deep into the skin for a fresh finish.
  • Lemon Seed Oil
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COSRX Aloe Soothing Sun Cream
COSRX Aloe Soothing Sun Cream
  • Contains Aloe Arborescens Leaf Extract
  • soothes and Moisturizes Skin at The Same Time.
  • Lightweight and Moisturizing Texture
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Beware: Some people have noticed fake products on certain stores. To ensure you are getting the real product, use the links above.

Korean Skin Care Routine for Beginners

1. MISSHA M Perfect BB Deep Cleansing Oil

  • Product: Cleansing Oil
  • Size: 200 ml
  • Price: $

To start off you need a cleansing oil. There are many great brands out there but this one will speed up your process up to 5x.

That’s how I achieved glowing skin faster than I expected.

This cleanser is rich in Tea Tree Oil, which is scientifically proven to improve the skin and keep it healthy. [1]

When I first started using this, I was a bit hesitant.

Mostly because I’ve heard people using other brands, which gave them great results. After the first few days, I didn’t notice much so I almost stopped using it.

Until I read somewhere that you must use Korean skincare products at least 2 weeks before making any conclusions.

So that’s exactly what I did.

I used it for another 10 days and BOOM… my skin looked better than ever.

My dark circles were gone and every time I cleansed my face it was almost as smooth as baby skin.

So, start your Korean skincare journey right now, and get this cleansing oil.

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2. COSRX One Step Original Clear Pad

  • Product: Exfoliator
  • Size: 70 pads
  • Price: $

The second product is a cleansing pad.

Cleansing pads are great for removing the last dead skin cells that are left over from the cleanser.

Most of the time using the cleanser is enough, however, there are times when it isn’t. That’s why you need to use a cleansing pad, which also refreshes the skin.

This cleansing pad contains ingredients like Salix Alba (Willow). [2]

In the study, it says that it helps with general anti-aging, while also contributing to its antioxidation.

Cleansing pads are also good for people who have sensitive skin, as it’s less likely to cause any irritation.

I have been using this for about 2 years now and it has been one of the best purchases I made. If you have never used a cleansing pad before, then I would recommend this one.

Especially, when your skincare concerns are anti-aging and brightening.

Give this one a try and get your healthy skin ASAP.

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3. COSRX Snail Mucin 96% Power Repairing Essence

  • Product: Essence
  • Size: 100 ml
  • Price: $$

Using this essence is extremely important for beginners. This essence contains Snail Mucin, which is backed by many experts, showing it’s one of the best ingredients for the skin. [3]

Try using this for at least one day.

You’ll see how great this will improve your skin.

Glass skin will come within weeks, instead of months. That’s how it made my skin healthier than ever.

And I’m not joking… this is literally a life-changer.

For the price, you also can’t really go wrong, since it’s extremely affordable.

And the best part, it’ll last you at least 2 to 3 months. This saves you a lot of money, unlike many other essences out there that only last a few weeks.

I tried many different other brands, where you needed a lot of essences, and this resulted in an empty tube within a week. It’s extremely frustrating when you know you’re basically wasting money on skincare.

But luckily, this one doesn’t do that.

So, give this one a try, especially if you’ve been considering getting into Korean skincare for a long time.

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4. COSRX Advanced Snail Mucin Power Sheet Mask

  • Product: Sheet Mask
  • Size: 10 Sheets
  • Price: $$

Using a sheet mask is a no-brainer for most people, including beginners.

Sheet masks are great for keeping the skin moisturized and refreshed at the same time.

Generally speaking, sheet masks should only be used once or twice a week so it doesn’t cost too much either. This is great if you have to stay within a budget.

I had a budget every 3 months for skincare and this sheet mask is a must-have. It’s extremely hydrating and after the first time of using it, you’ll notice that your skin will be softer than ever.

And the best part? It’s 100% natural and dermatologically tested. So, it’s gentle on the skin and won’t cause any irritation.

This is one of the reasons why I would recommend this.

Even if you only use it once every two weeks, you’ll start seeing some results. So, give it a try if you’re serious about taking your skincare to the next level.

And most importantly, is that you take action right away. Don’t wait too long and start procrastinating because that’s when you’ll fall into the “I’ll start tomorrow” trap.

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5. The Chok Chok Green Tea Watery Cream

  • Product: Moisturizer
  • Size: 100 ml
  • Price: $$

Using a moisturizer right after the essence is essential.

Mainly because you want to lock in all the nutrients from the essence and prevent them from evaporating. This is where the Chok Chok Green Tea Water comes in handy.

However, this isn’t just your ordinary moisturizer. It’s also a sleeping pack, which means you can leave it on overnight and wake up with extremely soft skin.

Generally, it takes about 2 to 3 months before you start getting extremely soft skin. However, using this moisturizer will speed up the process by at least 300%.

You can use this twice a day, but since it is not the cheapest. I advise you to use it once a day in the morning for the best results.

Apply it to the face and neck and leave it on for at least 15 minutes.

You’ll see how plump and hydrated your skin will look after using this.

So, get this one right now, before it’s too late. Take action now and your skin will thank you for it later.

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6. COSRX Aloe Soothing Sun Cream

  • Product: Sunscreen
  • Size: 50 ml
  • Price: $$

The last product on the list. This is a sunscreen that has all the basic needs for a beginner.

It works for all skin types and fits perfectly into the Korean skincare routine. It’s extremely lightweight and many Koreans use this on a daily basis.

This is the sunscreen that I have been using for about 3 months and it’s by far the best one.

The bottle looks small at first, however, you don’t need much. So, it’ll last you about 2 to 3 months depending on how often you use it. If you use it every single day, then it will probably last you about 2 months.

Make sure to apply this sunscreen for at least 30 minutes before going out.

This way it will be fully absorbed into the skin.

The main ingredient in this sunscreen is Aloe Arborescens Leaf Extract [4].

It’s often used in many skincare products to relieve redness, burns and assist with healing wounds. If you have sensitive skin, then this is perfect for you.

The only downside of using this is that it’s a bit more expensive than the other sunscreens on the market.

But other than that, this is a great choice for beginners.

Give it a try, and you won’t regret it.

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Buyer’s Guide: 6 Step Korean Skin Care Routine for Beginners

This is the only buyer’s guide you need when you’re starting out with Korean skincare.

How to Start Korean Skin Care?

Start by looking at your skin type.

You can use the skin type chart to determine what your skin type is.

Once you know your skin type, it’ll be much easier to find the right products.

  • If you have dry skin, then look for products that are hydrating and moisturizing.
  • If you have oily skin, then look for products that are light and non-greasy.
  • If you have sensitive skin, then look for products that are hypoallergenic and fragrance-free.

The next step is to find a cleanser that suits your skin type.

Once you’ve found the right cleanser, use it twice a day – in the morning and at night.

After cleansing, use a toner to balance the pH level of your skin. Then, apply an essence to help with hydration and nourishment.

Follow up with a moisturizer to lock in all the nutrients and prevent them from evaporating.

Finally, apply sunscreen to protect your skin from harmful UV rays. There’s no perfect routine since everyone has a different skin type.

The key is to find the right products and create a routine that works best for you. Don’t be afraid to experiment until you find the perfect combination.

What Are the 6 Steps for A Korean Skincare Routine?

  • Cleansing Oil
  • Exfoliator
  • Essence
  • Moisturizer
  • Sheet Mask
  • Sunscreen

These are the most important products for a beginner Korean skincare routine.

Are These 6 Products Essential?

Yes, all of these products are essential for a Korean skincare routine.

  • Cleansing oil is used to remove makeup and dirt from the skin.
  • Exfoliator is used to remove dead skin cells.
  • Essence is used to hydrate and nourish the skin.
  • Moisturizer is used to lock in moisture.
  • A sheet mask is used to brighten and hydrate the skin.
  • Sunscreen is used to protect the skin from the sun’s harmful UV rays.

So make sure to add all of these products to your skincare routine.

How Much Does It Cost to Get All These Products?

All the products added together cost about $120, and it’ll last you 2 to 3 months. So it’s not extremely expensive, but it’s not cheap either.

You can find all of these products on Amazon or at your local Korean beauty store.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. How long does it take to see results?

A. Generally, it takes 2 to 3 months to start seeing results. However, using all of these products will speed up the process by at least 300%.

Q. How can I get Korean skin naturally?

A. There’s no one answer to this question since everyone’s skin is different. However, using all of these products will help you get extremely soft and glowing skin.

Final Thoughts

After all, is said and done, these are the 6 most essential products for a beginner Korean skincare routine.

If you want to get started with Korean skincare, then make sure to add all of these products to your routine.

You won’t regret it, and your skin will thank you for it.

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    About The Author

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    Jason Park

    Jason has been living in Seoul for over 4 years, and during that time, he has experienced many of the city's hidden stores. He loves to write about his experiences and share them with others. Jason has been quoted and referenced by different major media companies like Mashed, Distractify, ThePrint and TastingTable. In his free time, he likes to watch Korean dramas and learn more about Korean culture.

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