Korea, Can Ten Steps Make My Skin Clear?

Living in the city of Seoul as a teenager, you are most likely exposed to different advertisements that promote perfect, glassy skin. Having clear skin is an attribute that is universally desired by young Koreans. However, because students are preoccupied with school and sports, they may have difficulty setting time aside to care for their skin. In response to this issue, Charlotte Cho, founder of Soko Glam, invented this 10 Step Skincare routine. Inspired by Korean skincare philosophy, Cho developed her own unique routine under the belief that healthy skin corresponds with a healthy lifestyle. In this article, I have listed out all 10 steps of the routine and included some of my personal products that can be incorporated into the routine. 

1. Makeup Removing/Oil cleansing

The initial step is to remove all makeup from your face by using an oil cleanser. According to Bustle, an online beauty magazine, one product that can help to remove makeup is Banila Co’s “Clean It Zero”. This product is targeted towards those with sensitive skin, and it can remove all of the makeup on your face. Renee Jacques (The Klog) claims that the product leaves your skin feeling plump and moisturized and using it to remove makeup. “Clean It Zero” retails for $17.12 on Amazon . 

2. Water-based cleansing

The second step is to wash your face with a water-based cleanser. Double-cleansing, a method in which you clean your face twice with, is recommended by many dermatologists because it can help prevent breakouts. One of my personal favorite products is the “Low-pH Good Morning Cleanser” from COSRX. This cleanser can be used during any time of the day and does not have to be used exclusively in the morning. It leaves your skin feeling refreshed and works with any skin type. This cleanser retails for $12.00 on the Soko Glam website . 

3. Exfoliating

Next is the exfoliating step. Exfoliators are not supposed to be harsh on your face and should leave your skin feeling soft. They helps remove dead skin cells, which can also brighten your complexion. One product that I like to use is Kiehls’  “Clearly Corrective Brightening & Exfoliating Daily Cleanser”. This cleanser-exfoliator reduced the size of the pores on my nose. This product can be purchased for $29.00 on the Kiehls website . 

4. Toner

Toning is essential to moisturizing your skin before applying any lotions. In addition, it can help remove excess dirt or dead skin cells from your face. One product I have used in the past is the “Calendula Herbal-Extract Toner Alcohol-Free”, which is from Keihls as well. This product is recommended for those with oily skin, and it has real calendula extract at the bottom of the bottle. This product costs $21.00 on the Kiehls website . 

5. Essence

Essence can help with anti-aging and moisturizing. One product recommended by Soko Glam is the “First Treatment Essence Mist” from MISSHA. Made with fermented yeast extract, Soko Glam claims that the product will renew and revive the skin by moisturizing it. This essence retails for $20.00 on Soko Glam. 

6. Treatments

Even though you might follow a skincare routine that works well in general, your skin might break out every so often. Therefore, it is important to use products that treat pimples or breakouts before they increase in size or number. By using treatment products, such as Mario Badescu’s “Drying Lotion” you can minimize your zits and whiteheads overnight. I have purchased this product multiple times because of its efficiency and amazing results. In addition, celebrities such as Kylie Jenner (Keeping Up with the Kardashians) and Lili Reinhart (Riverdale) have endorsed this product. The Drying Lotion can be purchased for $17.00 on the Mario Badescu website. 

7. Sheet Masks

Sheet masks are an amazing way to relax after a long day at school or a sweaty sports match Similar to the essence, sheet masks can rejuvenate your skin by adding more moisture and calming down inflammation or acne. I purchase my sheet masks from a store called Innisfree. Innisfree has a wide variety of masks with different benefits. One trick that I use is to put the mask inside of a refrigerator so that it feels refreshing on your face when in use. The “My Real Squeeze Mask” retails for $1.80 on the Innisfree website. 

8. Eye creams

Eye creams reduce swelling, dark circles, and puffiness. The skin around your eyes is extremely sensitive and thin, so eye creams are more gentle than the average moisturizer or face lotion. Though I do not use eye creams in my everyday routine, Soko Glam recommends the “Royal Honey Eye Cream” from Skinfood. This product costs $30.00 on Soko Glam. 

9. Moisturizer

The second to last step is to moisturize your skin. Although products such as essence, toners and sheet masks can help retain moisture in your skin, using a lotion or moisturizer can further improve the quality of your skin. They can also be used to smooth out face wrinkles. One product that I have been using for quite a while is the “Aloe Vera Oil-free Moisture Cream” from COSRX. This product can be found on Amazon for $16.98.

10. Sun Protection

The final and most important step is sun protection. This includes using sunscreen to protect yourself from harmful UV rays from the sun. Too much sun exposure is very destructive to your skin, and can result in peeling, dryness, and even cancer. As an athlete, I personally use sunscreens that are more protective than the average day-to-day products. The brand that I prefer is Coppertone, and I use their  “Coppertone Sport Sunscreen Lotion”. This lotion is SPF 50, and it does not wash off while sweating, making it the perfect product for any other person. A bottle retails for $7.57 on Amazon. 

This 10 step routine can also be found on the Soko Glam website. There are many products listed for every step of the skin plan, which makes shopping very convenient and easy to navigate. Students who do not usually prioritize keeping their skin healthy can benefit from this routine just by getting used to cleaning their face on a daily basis. By starting small, you can work your way up to all 10 steps. Though these exact 10 steps are highly recommended by Soko Glam, modifications can always be made. No two people have the exact same skin. The 10 step routine might not work perfectly for your skin, so you should be mindful of your skin type, and use products accordingly. 

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