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10 Step Korean Skin Care Routine for Sensitive Skin: Definitive Guide

Jason Park
Published by: Jason Park
Last updated:

Considering getting a new skincare routine? Go for it.

Just don’t be surprised when those skincare products will cause irritation, redness, and breakouts after 4 weeks.

Or when the products are marketed the way, it’ll save all your skin concerns.

Or when you feel like the products don’t give the results you want, and feel like it was a waste of money.

Today, I’ll talk about the 10 Step Korean Skincare Routine for Sensitive Skin, and which products actually work.

Don’t waste your time, money, and energy on products that’ll never work. It’ll make you feel empty inside (the same feeling after watching a K-drama)

Let’s get started.

Cleansing Oil
iUNIK Calendula Complete Cleansing Oil
iUNIK Calendula Complete Cleansing Oil
  • Deep cleansing oil
  • Infused with 94-percent plant oils
  • Leaving the skin feeling soothed
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Water-Based Cleanser
Dermalogy Real Flower Cleansing Water Calendula
Dermalogy Real Flower Cleansing Water Calendula
  • Nourishes sensitive skin
  • Formula contains real calendula
  • Cleanse skin quickly and efficiently
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AHA, BHA, PHA 30 Days Miracle Truecica Clear Pad
AHA, BHA, PHA 30 Days Miracle Truecica Clear Pad
  • Highly-concentrated cica essence
  • Reducing sebum and minimizing pores
  • Blend of naturally-derived AHA, BHA, and PHA
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COSRX Refresh AHA BHA Vitamin C Daily Toner
COSRX Refresh AHA BHA Vitamin C Daily Toner
  • Formulated with Golden-RX
  • Contains 16 types of essential ingredients
  • Rejuvenate your skin
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COSRX Galactomyces 95 Tone Balancing Essence
COSRX Galactomyces 95 Tone Balancing Essence
  • Fermented component
  • Fast absorption
  • Affordable
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Pure Vitamin C 21.5% Advanced Serum
Pure Vitamin C 21.5% Advanced Serum
  • Pure Vitamin C 21.5%
  • Replenish and retain moisture
  • Hydrated and absorbed
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Sheet Mask
Dear, Klairs Sheet Mask
Dear, Klairs Sheet Mask
  • Enriched with white willow bark extract
  • Cooling ingredients such as erythritol
  • Low irritating
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Eye Cream
COSRX Advanced Snail Peptide Eye Cream
COSRX Advanced Snail Peptide Eye Cream
  • Nutrient-rich eye cream
  • Contains snail secretion filtrate
  • Absorbs instantly into skin 
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Pyunkang Yul Nutrition Cream
Pyunkang Yul Nutrition Cream
  • Soft textured, nutritious facial cream
  • Protects skin from external irritations
  • Glowing complexion
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Anessa Moisture UV Sunscreen Mild Milk A SPF
Anessa Moisture UV Sunscreen Mild Milk A SPF
  • Hypoallergenic design
  • Environmental damage block
  • Moist and comfortable
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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 Sensitive Skin

1. iUNIK Calendula Complete Cleansing Oil

  • Essential: Yes
  • Product: Oil-Based Cleanser
  • Size: 200 ml

Looking for a cleansing oil that actually works for sensitive skin, this is it.

I’ve been testing out many cleansers lately, and 99.99% of them don’t work. Well, it may work for dry skin. But this skincare routine is solely focused on sensitive skin.

After using this oil-based cleanser for about 3 weeks, I saw some big improvements. My skin barrier got stronger while preventing redness.

Most cleansers cause redness or irritation. Unlike those, this one actually doesn’t. The reason being is this cleansing oil is infused with plant oils, which are backed by many studies.

It shows improvements in many skin types, but specifically sensitive skin.

I wear a lot of makeup myself, and this cleansing oil is strong enough to remove everything at once. No need to double cleanse, which adds another expense to the routine.

It’s by far the most powerful cleanser for sensitive skin. And the best part? No irritation after cleansing the skin.

If you haven’t been using this already, you’re missing out big time. Not only will this solve your main problem, but it’ll also save you a lot of money. The bottle will last you about 3 to 5 months, which makes this very affordable compared to other cleansers.

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2. Dermalogy Real Flower Cleansing Water Calendula

  • Essential: No
  • Product: Water-Based Cleanser
  • Size: 300 ml

Have you ever used a water-based cleanser, well, I have, and it’s not essential

Unlike many other articles on the internet, that promote this. It’s overrated.

However, it does speed up the process by at least 200% to achieve perfect skin. So, if you’re interested in that, it may be very helpful. I used this for about 3 months but didn’t find it essential after.

It did improve my skin. It’s like cleansing your face again after the first one.

It’s formulated with real calendula petal extracts, which are proven to improve the skin.

Also helps with removing dead skin cells. If you feel like your skin is very sensitive, then it might be worth giving it a try.

Most people with sensitive skin types really like this water-based cleanser. It does feel very soft and smooth on the face, also making it very refreshing.

So, maybe it’s worth giving it a try, chances are, it’ll improve your skin.

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3. AHA, BHA, PHA 30 Days Miracle Truecica Clear Pad

  • Essential: Yes
  • Product: Exfoliator
  • Size: 70 pcs

Acne-prone skin. Oily skin. Dry skin. All of that doesn’t matter.

This exfoliating pad works for all skin types, including sensitive skin.

It comes with 70 pcs, which will last you about 1 month when used twice a day. After using this exfoliating pad during the test, I found that using it twice is way more effective than once.

Using it once is also fine, but cine the cotton pad is highly concentrated. You’ll see better results when used once in the morning and once at night.

Are you tired of having breakouts when you wake up, well, this prevents that from happening.

Every morning you wake up, you’ll feel like a newborn. That’s how I felt every time I used this exfoliating pad.

The only downside is the price, it’s quite expensive when used monthly.

However, if you’re serious about taking your skincare to the next level, you can’t leave this out. The people that included this in their skincare routine, and the ones that didn’t see huge differences.

The people that did achieve perfect skin almost 150% faster.

So give it a try, you won’t be disappointed.

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4. COSRX Refresh AHA BHA Vitamin C Daily Toner

  • Essential: Yes
  • Product: Toner
  • Size: 150 ml

Toners are essential for people with sensitive skin. It calms skin redness, while it also protects the skin.

It’s a must.

The toner is formulated with a Golden-RX complex, which massively improves the skin. Not only is this backed by many experts, it also is very affordable.

That’s the best part.

I’ve been using this for about 14 days now, and it’s by far the best toner for sensitive skin. You can call it the best skin-strengthening toner on the market.

Toners feel like cleansing your face with fresh water every morning. It contains 16 types of essential ingredients.

Yes, you’ve read that right. 16 types.

That’s more than any other toner, so if you want to improve your skin fast, then this is the one you must use.

Glowing skin, that’s what you’ll achieve when you start using this. However, keep in mind that it may take up to 14 days before you see any results. So, don’t give up after a few days, give it some time, and it’ll be worth it.

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5. COSRX Galactomyces 95 Tone Balancing Essence

  • Essential: No
  • Product: Essence
  • Size: 100 ml

The Galactomyces 95 Tone Balancing Essence is by far the best essence for sensitive skin.

Not only does it protect your face from stripping the natural oils. It also contains galactomyces ferment filtrate.

This keeps the skin soft and smooth, while also giving it a brightening effect.

Many studies have shown that using an essence will massively improve your skin. You might have a weakened skin barrier if your skin is extremely sensitive.

No worries.

This essence will protect the skin, unlike many others that don’t deliver on their promises. This one actually does.

I started using this essence about 13 months ago, and still to this day I use it.

It really helps with wrinkles, dull skin, and irritation. Make sure to try it out, if you can afford it.

The majority of people that start using this essence see better and faster improvements in their skin than not. It’s because this essence contains many skin-repairing ingredients.

It’s not essential in the skincare routine, but I do highly recommend it.

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6. Pure Vitamin C 21.5% Advanced Serum

  • Essential: Yes
  • Product: Serum
  • Size: 30 ml

Healthy glowing skin is what you’ll get by using a serum.

Serums are essential for people with sensitive skin, making them one of the most important products in this skincare routine.

This serum contains 21.5% pure vitamin C, which is scientifically backed to improve the skin. While many Korean beauty products don’t do this, this one actually does.

Also prevents dead skin cells from sticking to the skin.

You must use this serum if you want brighter and smoother skin, it’s much better than using an essence alone.

Using the two products combined will create a synergy.

I’m not saying that this will work for everyone, however, if you’re really serious about your skin. It’s a must.

Take your Korean skincare for sensitive skin very seriously, it’ll show later in your life. When everyone has saggy skin, you’ll be happy that you started using this serum.

So, give it a go, chances are, you’ll never use another serum again.

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7. Dear, Klairs Sheet Mask

  • Essential: No
  • Product: Sheet Mask
  • Size: 5x 25 ml

Looking for the best sheet mask for sensitive skin, this is it.

Most people with sensitive skin types often use the wrong products.

Using this face mask is like heaven, your face will feel softer than after. That’s why I’ve been using this every week for the last couple of months.

At first, I was a bit skeptical about this. It is quite expensive. However, after I saw the results and improvements in my skin it was a no-brainer.

This sheet mask contains 5 types of ceramide, which is backed by many studies to improve the skin. Not only that but it also is infused with aloe vera leaf.

Aloe vera leaf is by far one of the best ingredients for sensitive skin. And it works for all skin types.

It doesn’t matter whether you have irritated skin, oily skin, or acne-prone skin. This sheet mask will work for everyone, which I loved.

The thin mask should be applied in the morning or at night, this will give the best results. I noticed that my skin got stronger, so it’s definitely worth giving it a go.

If you aren’t using this already, then you should try it. If you never try out new products, it’s likely you’ll never find your ideal skincare routine.

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8. COSRX Advanced Snail Peptide Eye Cream

  • Essential: No
  • Product: Eye Cream
  • Size: 25 ml

Eye Cream… is it really necessary? Well, for most people it’s not.

However, if you have extremely sensitive skin, then it might be worth trying it. This eye cream will calm down the skin around your eyes, plus it’ll tighten the pores.

Most eye creams don’t have any active ingredients that repair damaged skin. This one does. It’s the eye cream that I have been using for 2 weeks now, and my skin around the eyes is softer than ever.

This eye cream contains snail secretion, which is scientifically backed to calm skin redness.

The only downside is that it is not cheap. But if you can add it to your skincare routine, it’ll benefit you greatly.

There are many natural healing nutrients for sensitive skin types. Ingredients like peptide complex-5, which is made out of 5 highly concentrated peptides.

Peptide has many expert studies, which all say that peptides are essential for skin.

Your best choice is to buy this product if you have sensitive skin. It will improve your skin significantly without too much work.

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9. Pyunkang Yul Nutrition Cream

  • Essential: Yes
  • Product: Moisturizer
  • Size: 100 ml

Moisturizers are essential for every skin type, including sensitive skin.

This is my go-to moisturizer for many years, and still to this day I use it.

It’s great because it calms the skin very well. Ever feel like your skin gets irritated from using products? Well, this one fixes all of that, and the best part?

It has a very soft texture. Normally moisturizers make your skin oily, but this one doesn’t.

The cream is lightweight and smells amazing. It’s basically extra protection for your face. It’ll keep your skin moisturized throughout the whole day without feeling oily or sticky.

It’s also infused with 21 EWG ingredients, which are known to prevent skin damage.

I know that some of these ingredients are quite expensive, but they’re worth the money for this product.

So, give it a try, chances are, you will never try another moisturizer.

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10. Anessa Moisture UV Sunscreen Mild Milk A SPF

  • Essential: Yes
  • Product: SPF
  • Size: 60 ml

Always getting sunburned because of your sensitive skin.

Well, I had exactly the same problem.

Until I finally found a sunscreen that worked. This mild sunscreen is made of milk, which is very comfortable on the skin.

It doesn’t feel greasy or heavy after applying it.

And the best part? It’s fragrance-free.

Most people with sensitive skin types will notice instant improvements in their skin. Especially you that has been dealing with sensitive skin for a long time. This is a must-have, and therefore it’s essential.

Don’t come home with stressed skin, which causes breakouts. Start using this SPF, and know that your skin is always protected against the sun. Even during the winters, it’s very handy.

I started using it back in university (about 2 years ago). And still to this day it can’t be left out. It’s a must-have for people with sensitive skin.

Give it a try, and never deal with irritated skin again.

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Buyer’s Guide: 10 Step Korean Skin Care Routine for Sensitive Skin

This is the only buyer’s guide you’ll ever need when buying products for sensitive skin.

How To Choose The Best Products for Sensitive Skin

Choosing the best skincare products for sensitive skin can be hard and time-consuming. However, it’s important that you take time when choosing the best products.

These products will last you about 3 to 4 months, which is a big investment. Don’t waste your money on products that will never work. Follow the routine above to get the best products for sensitive skin.

If you have to stay within a budget, then it’s better to only choose the essential product.s However, knowing that it might slow down the process, which can be a problem for some.

Using all the products that are listed above, will certainly speed up the process by at least 300%. So, if you have the chance, make sure to go off it before it’s too late.

What Ingredients to Avoid

Ingredients you must avoid at all costs are:

  • Ammonium Laureth Sulfate
  • Sodium Laureth Sulfate
  • Tea Lauryl Sulphate

These are known to be irritants for your skin.

Because they’re chemicals, it makes them very aggressive towards the skin which can lead to irritation and redness.

So, don’t even bother using it because it will do more damage than good.

Does The Korean Skincare Routine Work?

Yes, the Korean skincare routine works. However, staying consistent is key. If you can’t stay consistent with a routine, then it won’t work.

The people that use Korean skincare consistently see the most results, therefore it’s important that you give it at least a couple of months.

Don’t give up after a few weeks, that will burn a hole in your wallet. And you’ll only be disappointed.


Q. How often should you use Korean Skincare?

Korean skincare products should be used daily. Once in the morning and once in the evening.

You must use sunscreen only in the morning, using it in the evening won’t do anything.

Q. Can men use Korean skincare?

Yes, men can use it as well. Especially the facial masks are great for any skin type.

Q. How long will it take before you see any results?

It’ll take about 3 to 4 weeks before you see any results. Including the time to heal your damaged skin.

Q. Is the 10 step skincare routine better than the 3 or 5 steps?

Yes, the 10 step skincare routine is better than the 3 or 5 steps. It’s vital for people with sensitive skin because it gives the skin more room to breathe.

Q. What is the best store for Korean skincare for sensitive skin?

The best store to buy Korean skincare is Restyle. Its prices are affordable, and you’ll get the best deals.


After all, the Korean skincare routine for sensitive skin is a fantastic routine that you can do on a daily basis. It doesn’t require a lot of work, and it saves you a ton of money.

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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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